Beata qualified as an associate in our Commercial Litigation team in September 2020, after joining the firm in 2015. Having studied law in a number of jurisdictions, Beata’s qualification path has been unusual.
Beata completed her LL.B. degree in International and European Law in the Netherlands. She also did an exchange semester at the University of Edinburgh, following which she completed her LL.M. degree at University College London.
From the beginning of her legal studies, Beata knew that she wanted to pursue a career in law. The law inspired her due to its complexity and the fact that it represented a constant intellectual challenge. This is why Beata decided to pursue a career in complex commercial disputes and was attracted to Stewarts as one of the leading law firms dealing with such matters.
Beata joined the firm as a paralegal to assist with the high-profile RBS Rights Issue Litigation, in which a team at Stewarts advised 313 financial institutions on recovering their losses arising from RBS’s £12bn rights issue. Even as a paralegal, Beata had great exposure to the substantive issues in the case and conducted key investigations and analyses in the matter. In this regard, Beata comments:
“Paralegals at Stewarts are unlike other paralegals on the market. From day one, you get to have a high degree of responsibility and involvement in your cases. This helped me develop my legal skills from early on and showed that I am able to become a solicitor one day.
“As Stewarts recruits its trainee solicitors from its paralegals, showing that you are able to deliver a consistently high-quality work product is essential. At the same time, this model offers paralegals the chance to experience working at the firm before deciding to pursue a training contract here. Not many firms offer this opportunity.”
Before commencing her training contract at Stewarts in September 2018, Beata completed her Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) while working as a paralegal. She also completed her Legal Practice Course (LPC), achieving an 88% final average while working full-time as a paralegal and later trainee solicitor.
“I cannot express highly enough the support which I received from associates and partners at Stewarts while I was completing my GDL and LPC,” she says. “It was not always easy to juggle work and studies. Having an understanding and supportive team really made a difference.”
How to stand out as a trainee
As a trainee solicitor, Beata had seats at the firm’s Aviation and International Injury, Personal Injury and Commercial Litigation departments, and says:
“Being used to the commercial litigation world, moving departments as a trainee while at the same time stepping up in terms of responsibility was a challenge and a steep learning curve. However, stepping outside my comfort zone allowed me to develop my legal skills even further and ultimately mature as a lawyer.”
During her training contract, Beata also obtained her Civil Higher Rights of Audience, becoming a solicitor-advocate with rights to represent clients in the Senior Civil Courts of England and Wales.
Beata returned to the Commercial Litigation team for the second year of her training contract and qualified in the team in September 2020. She has worked on a number of the department’s complex and high-profile matters, including the Tesco litigation arising under FSMA in connection with Tesco’s accounting irregularities and misstatement of profits, and the SKAT litigation, an international fraud litigation against more than 80 defendants arising out of cum-ex trading and refunds made for withholding tax.
Beata says: “To all those whose ambition is to qualify as solicitors or barristers, remember what Lincoln once said:
‘If you are resolutely determined to make a lawyer of yourself, the thing is more than half done already.’”
To view Beata’s profile, please click here.
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