In August, Maxwell Livesey was part of our legal team – an intern who is gaining legal experience literally around the world due to his international background. In the interview, he talked about why he decided to study law in England, what experience he had gained from our internship, but also why everyone should try to live abroad.
How would you introduce yourself in a few sentences?
I am Maxwell Livesey and I am a 20-year-old Law LLB student at the University of Bristol. I am originally from the United Kingdom; however, I have also lived in Switzerland and the Czech Republic.
In which of these countries do you feel most like home?
I feel most at home in the UK, as that is where I spend most of my time, however when I come back to Switzerland for the holidays, I also feel very comfortable and at home there.
Why did you choose to study law, especially in the United Kingdom? Please, add the reason, why did you choose to study in the UK.
I chose to study law as it was a degree that was related to the subjects I was interested in at school, such as history, economics, and English.
I also felt like law was a good degree to have as aside from becoming a lawyer, a law degree opens lots of doors to work in other interesting professions.
I chose to study law in the United Kingdom for a couple of reasons. As I am originally from the UK, I wanted to go back there for university. I also wanted to study English common law due to the length of the course, as well as the fact that it is used internationally and by lots of the top law firms.
What qualities do you think a good lawyer should have?
I think a good lawyer needs to be analytical and a good problem solver to be able to identify issues and assist clients with their various needs.
The ability to be flexible is also very important as lawyers must adapt to changes in their clients’ problems, and effectively and efficiently alter their strategies and approaches when needed.
Why did you decide to do an internship abroad?
I chose to do an internship abroad as I believe it is important to be able to work with people from different social and cultural backgrounds, especially as today’s working environments are becoming increasingly international. I also really enjoyed living in different countries and learning more about different places and an internship abroad provided me with that opportunity.
Do you have experience with advocacy from the UK?
Last summer I had the chance to do some work experience with Pinsent Masons LLP in London.
How does the experience from the UK differ from the experience gained in the Czech Republic?
The experience in the UK was different as the firm I worked for was a lot larger than Peyton Legal and I worked in a specific department of the firm, as opposed to experiencing work in lots of different practice areas.
The working environment in the Czech Republic was also more relaxed and casual compared to the UK.
What experience do you get from your internship?
I got to experience working in a smaller firm, where lawyers have the chance to work in lots of different areas of law. I also learned a lot about arbitration and the arbitration process, which was interesting and very beneficial given that next year at university one of my optional units is transnational arbitration. It was also a great experience to work with people and a firm outside of the UK and to learn about legal practices in the Czech Republic.
What did you like most about the internship in our office?
I enjoyed working on lots of different tasks during my internship. The arbitration summary I was tasked with writing over the two weeks was really interesting, however, it was nice to be given additional smaller tasks by other lawyers in the firm so that I got to experience work in a range of areas of law.
Would you like to work in advocacy after graduating from university?
I am not entirely sure what I would like to do after graduating from university, however, I am thinking about training to become a lawyer.
In what country would you like to pursue the law, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, or the Czech Republic?
I would pursue law in the United Kingdom, as I have studied English law and speak English fluently.
What are the main reasons why law students should go to study abroad or gain work experience across multiple countries?
Law students should go to study abroad or gain work experience in multiple countries to get out of their comfort zones, and experience and learn more about different countries, cultures, and people.
As the world becomes increasingly international, I believe it is important to be open-minded and be able to work with people from other cultural and social backgrounds to your own.
Eliška Vetýšková, legal assistant – firstname.lastname@example.org