Miray Wahba, BLM

Name: Miray Wahba

Firm: BLM

Position: Trainee solicitor

Degree: LLB (Hons), BPTC, LLM in Medical Law, LPC

University: School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), BPP, King’s College London, BPP

Hobbies: Sport, eating good food, going to the theatre

Current department: Healthcare

Number of TC applications made and interviews attended: 2/2

Why did you decide to train as a solicitor?

I initially wanted to practice as a barrister; I completed the BPTC, but quickly changed my mind and cross-qualified to train as a solicitor. I knew from a young age that I wanted to do something law-related. I had always been fascinated by the law and lawyers; in particular, I was often impressed by how opposing lawyers could both convince me by their submissions. After being called to the Bar and working as a paralegal, I quickly realised just how much I enjoy working with others and the regular client contact that comes with being a solicitor.

What were the biggest challenges you faced when trying to secure a training contract?

Finding a firm that would best suit me and that ticked all my boxes. It took me a long time to identify and ascertain the ethos and main legal areas of firms. Many firms’ websites are aimed at their clients, so it was often difficult to get past the legal jargon and understand exactly the kind of work a firm does. Having been focussed on pupillages instead of training contracts, I was not particularly familiar with firms and their reputation.

What was the toughest training contract interview question you were asked (at any firm) and how did you answer?

The toughest aspect of a training contract interview, for me, was not a question, per se, but was a group assessment. They sat me in a large room with seven other applicants to discuss a topic while two partners sat at the end of the table watching and assessing us. I struggled to voice my opinion within a big group of outspoken people.

As I did not wish to interrupt anyone, unfortunately, the assessment was over before I could contribute much. I learnt from this experience and during my next assessment day, I made sure I contributed without interrupting.

Tell us a bit about the type of work handled by the department you’re in at the moment

The Healthcare team at BLM comprises of the Regulatory and Claims teams. Within the Regulatory team, we defend healthcare professionals, namely doctors, nurses and dentists, in relation to regulatory matters. We also often represent healthcare professionals at inquests. The Claims team defends clinical negligence cases.

What are the most enjoyable aspects of your job?

Job satisfaction. Our lay clients are mostly doctors who have worked very hard for most of their lives to get to where they are. Assisting a doctor, or any healthcare professional, to achieve a good outcome relating to their career always feels great.

What about your job didn’t you expect before you started?

I was surprised by how many opportunities I am given as a trainee to boost and raise the firm’s profile. Before starting my training contract, I felt I would be at the bottom of the food chain and without much relevance to such a large firm’s profile. But I have been pleasantly surprised by how much my opinion has been considered and how many opportunities I am given, such as this, to talk about and raise the firm’s profile.

Who’s the most recent email in your inbox from, and what’s it about?

An email from my last seat supervisor asking how I am, wishing me luck in my next seat and asking when I will go over to visit.

Where’s the best place to go to get your office’s gossip?

By the printers or the kitchen.

Describe your training partner in three words.

Encouraging, resilient, inspiring 

Tell us two truths and one lie about yourself (in any order).

  • I love vegetables
  • I was once a county-level javelin champion
  • I have an eleventh toe

If you had not decided to become a lawyer, what career would you have chosen?

An events planner. I love organising events and particularly loved planning my own wedding. I would definitely specialise in weddings. Unfortunately, I rarely get to use my creative side doing this job.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to pursue a career in law?

  1. Work hard and persevere.
  2. Be sure it’s what you want to do and choose your area of law carefully.
  3. Be nice to people along the way.