Name: Max Evans
Chambers: Fountain Court Chambers
Position: 2nd six pupil barrister
Degree: Medicine and Law
University: University of Cambridge
Studied BPTC at: BPP London
Hobbies: Hiking, long-distance running, supporting Harlequins
How many rounds of applications did it take to get pupillage? 1
Number of interviews attended: 13
Why did you decide to train as a barrister?
I enjoy persuading people, and that is the bread and butter of a barrister’s job. The work is so varied – it difficult to think of an average day – and there is always something new and interesting to think about in the law. I was also attracted by the flexibility of being self-employed.
What was the toughest pupillage interview question you were asked (at any chambers) and how did you answer?
I was asked how I would bring clients with me to chambers if I was given a pupillage offer. Still being at university and not knowing any clients at that stage, that was a slightly difficult one to answer!
Tell us a bit about the type of work you’re doing at the moment…
I am currently drafting a Proposed Formal Complaint for the Financial Reporting Council. It’s similar to a Particulars of Claim. The case involves two huge businesses and is of enormous financial and reputational importance to them. One of the challenges is the unusual nature of the document – it is law-light, and accountancy-heavy. It is a fascinating case to be working on.
What are the most enjoyable aspects of your job?
There is very little which is not enjoyable – I find the people interesting and the work fascinating.
What aspect of the job have you found most difficult to get to grips with?
Chambers is always busy, but one aspect is sometimes how unpredictable the demands of the job can be. Occasionally work will appear seemingly from nowhere and you need to be in three places at once. But to be honest, I’d much rather it that way – then you can really enjoy your holiday!
What about your job didn’t you expect before you started?
Just how brainy but equally how welcoming and helpful everybody is in Chambers – even to the pupils!
Who’s the most recent email in your inbox from, and what’s it about?
It’s from my clerk and it is in regard to secondments. At Fountain Court we have the chance to be seconded to law firms or clients. For someone like me who came to the Bar straight from University, it’s a fantastic opportunity to learn about what life is like on the other side of the profession. It’s also a chance to meet and impress current and future clients.
What’s your best ‘in court’ anecdote so far?
There was a memorable moment when a judge asked the opposing side’s barrister what he thought his best point was. The transcript records his response as “several inaudible words”.
Which member of chambers (barrister or otherwise) would you want to be on the run with in the event of a zombie apocalypse, and why?
Jamie McClelland. He is the most effortlessly diplomatic person I have met. He would persuade the zombies that Mars is actually a much nicer planet to invade. They’d leave saying how grateful they were for his help.
Tell us two truths and one lie about yourself (in any order).
- I accidentally parked my car on the Tour de France route. It was then impounded by French police.
- I was an amateur child actor and twice appeared on CBeebies.
- Last year I ran from London to Cambridge in a day.
If you had not decided to become a lawyer, what career would you have chosen?
I studied Medicine at university for two years, so I would have been a doctor.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to pursue a career as a barrister?
I think applicants can sometimes think that there is a single route to the Bar. There definitely isn’t – of the three other pupils in my year, one had been a solicitor, one a consultant and one a teacher. Whatever your background, provided you perform well on the day, you have a good chance of getting an offer.
And finally, barristers tend to have a lot to say, so please feel free to add any extra words of wisdom here:
Work hard and keep your fingers crossed – it will all come good in the end.