ByrneWallace LLP Emma O'Hara
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Emma O'Hara

Job Title:Trainee Solicitor
Trainee Placements:Property

LLM Trinity College Dublin 2018

LLB Manchester Metropolitan University FE1s - 2021

Due to Qualify:2025

Why ByrneWallace LLP?

ByrneWallace LLP stood out to me as it is a large, leading Irish law firm, and yet it maintains a collegiate and friendly atmosphere. The Firm’s breadth of practice areas is a huge bonus for Trainees, as it means that we get exposure to so many different and contrasting Departments throughout our Traineeships. We are lucky that each day, we get to work with and learn from top-rated lawyers in the industry, and solicitors at all levels are always open and approachable. 

ByrneWallace LLP is regularly involved in high value and/or high profile transactions and cases, and so it is great experience as a Trainee to be involved with this sort of work, and to see how a file operates from its inception to its completion. 

The work is fast-paced and you are expected to get involved and show initiative, but it is very rewarding when you are able to apply your skills and obtain a good outcome for your team. 

The Firm is also keen promote work/life balance and a healthy lifestyle and regularly facilitates a variety of social events, including hikes, charity 5km runs and golf tournaments. These events are a great opportunity to get outside and to spend time with your colleagues away from your desk. 

When researching potential law firms, another criteria I looked at was gender equality within the firm itself, and I was delighted to learn that ByrneWallace has achieved Partner gender parity. This is important to me because as a young woman in law, I want to feel that there is no glass ceiling in terms of my career progression. It is encouraging that multiple Departments are now headed by women in the Firm, and I feel that this sends out a strong and progressive message.   

Describe your rotations to date

I am nearing the end of my pre-seat in the Property Department, before I go to Blackhall Place in September for the PPC course. 

These last few months have provided me with invaluable experience and a great start to my career as a Solicitor, including attending a closing with a Client on my very first day, and working on a really diverse range of matters. As a Trainee in ByrneWallace, you are encouraged to be curious, proactive and to ask questions, and I find that this fosters a positive learning environment in the Firm where everyone is keen for you to grow and learn and for you to get the most out of the experience. 

Partners and Fee Earners are keen to involve Trainees in projects and a wide variety of matters to give us as much exposure as possible, and I have consistently been involved with interesting, intellectually stimulating work. 

I enjoy being given the responsibility to draft legal documents and correspondence, while having the full support of the Partners and the team at large behind you. It is satisfying to then see those documents issued, and to feel that you are making a contribution to the team. 

Future at ByrneWallace LLP

I am looking forward to Blackhall, and then experiencing three more rotations on my return to the office. It will be great to get more experience across the Firm’s broad range of practice areas, and to figure out what Department I would like to practice in going forward.