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Trainee Katharina
Katharina Theil Solicitor International Department
I first came across Leigh Day when I was doing my LLM at SOAS. One of the partners in the International Claims Department came to give a talk about a case against a Peruvian mining company. I had been interested in Corporate Accountability for a while and was very impressed by what the partner said about the case and how passionate she was about achieving justice for the affected individuals. I was also attracted to the firm because it seemed to be a place where you could combine legal work and activism. However, at that stage I had not even done the GDL yet, as I had moved to the UK to do the LLM. When the opportunity came to apply and I was taken on as a short term paralegal I was absolutely delighted. The work was specific to one case and I left the firm once the case had settled. After working at Leigh Day, I found it hard to find any other roles that I felt passionate about, so I decided to enrol on the GDL part-time and eventually was given the opportunity to come back to Leigh Day.  
 
I’d been a paralegal for Leigh Day for a few years before I applied for a training contract, as I had to finish my GDL before applying. For anyone applying externally, I think it is important to mention that every applicant is judged on an equal basis regardless of whether you’ve worked at the firm or not. It’s key to demonstrate your commitment to the principles and values Leigh Day stands for, including access to justice for each and every one no matter what their background is or where they come from.
 
I am currently doing my first seat in the Medical Negligence Department where I am involved in a number of cases. I have had the opportunity to go to conferences with counsel, clients and experts, which has given me an insight into strategic considerations of how cases are run. This has been an invaluable experience. The cases that I’m working on are all at different stages. I have been able to assist on some from the beginning, which has been really interesting.

Leigh Day is an incredibly friendly place to work. Everyone from the most senior lawyers to support staff are highly committed to the work we do and that is very noticeable. People also like to spend time with each other socially and there are a lot of activities and events to get involved in.

Working in litigation is fascinating as no day is like another. Cases take unexpected turns and you get to be involved in the nitty-gritty of it all. I particularly enjoy meeting clients, understanding how they’ve been wronged and establishing the best way of helping them resolve their legal issues.
 
Favourite Quote:
“Stand up for what you believe in even if you are standing alone.”
― Sophie Scholl