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Firstly, what is your role?
My role is Head of the Residential Conveyancing Department at Timms Solicitors, a four partner firm with offices in Derby, Swadlincote, Burton and Ashby. I am responsible for the day to day management of the conveyancing function across the Firm whilst managing a varied caseload of residential conveyancing files.
Why did you choose a career in conveyancing and What attracted you to your particular specialism?
I started my legal career at a High Street law firm which also dealt with personal injury claims for members of a large trade union. So initially I handled an unusual mix of personal injury litigation and residential conveyancing work. I preferred the faster pace of residential conveyancing and enjoyed being able to see a transaction through from start to finish in a relatively short period of time whilst having a good deal of client contact. Also having studied for my legal qualifications whilst working full time in administration roles, I found conveyancing to be a specialism where I could combine my past skills and experience with my legal qualifications.
What is the most enjoyable part of your job?
I enjoy the fact that every day is different and take great pleasure in seeing the results of good teamwork.
What particular challenges are you or have you faced in these tougher times?
I took over the role of Head of Residential Conveyancing in January 2009 just as the impact of the financial crisis and the downturn in the property market hit. The constant need to restructure, embrace changes in technology/law/practice and adapt to a volatile property market has been a challenge as has been the balancing act between managing risk and driving the department forward.
What do you think will be growth opportunities for the conveyancing profession over the next couple of years?
I believe that equity release is an area which is likely to continue to expand due to an ever growing ageing population, many of whom are “asset rich” and “cash poor”.
What’s been your most enjoyable or high profile recent piece of work?
Winning the East Midlands Conveyancing Finalist of the Year at the LFS Awards in Coventry this September was definitely the highlight of the year!
What inspires you when it comes to your work?
The hard work and determination of the conveyancing team is a constant inspiration to me.
Do you work by a particular mantra or motto in your business life?
My favourite “tongue in cheek” mantra’s are “Keep Calm and Carry On Conveyancing’ and ‘Onwards and Upwards’.
Can you give one piece of professional advice to your peers?
I would recommend membership to The Bond Group to any conveyancing professional. The willingness to share information between member firms, the regular updates from the founder Rob Hailstone and the power that comes from law firms joining together has been invaluable benefit to me over the last few years.
I’m on the right accepting the award with my colleague Rachel Hughes.
Anyone interested in joining should contact firstname.lastname@example.org