News & Views

As an Associate Trainee in the Dispute Resolution Team

What types of matters does the Dispute Resolution team handle?
A typical matter for the Dispute Resolution team, or DR, is acting as counsel to clients in legal or arbitral proceedings regarding different disputes. The clients are, almost without exception, businesses that operate in very different fields. Disputes often concern alleged breaches of contracts and claims for damages, but on a general level, matters can relate to almost any branch of law. The disputes handled by the Dispute Resolution team are typically associated with acquisitions, shareholder agreements, building projects, claims for damages associated with competition law, or questions related to management responsibility. The team handles both national and international trials and arbitral proceedings.

The Dispute Resolution team also handles matters related to insolvency law, where the team assists clients acting as, for instance, creditors in insolvency procedures. Furthermore, the team assists clients on substantial business-related criminal law matters, such as comprehensive criminal trials related to trade secrets, bribery, and environmental matters.

The matters the Dispute Resolution team handles can be associated with almost anything business-related, but disputes concerning intellectual property and tax are handled by teams that specialise in those areas particularly. Matter work often starts with drafting or replying to legal briefs even before the start of any proceedings. The job also includes assisting clients on drafting limitation of liability clauses or dispute resolution clauses and training and counselling, for example, on compliance-related matters. The team also co-operates with other BA groups quite a bit.

What types of tasks does a trainee have in the Dispute Resolution team?
A trainee’s tasks include legal investigations and drafting or assisting in drafting documents, such as memoranda and legal briefs. The tasks can also include managing large quantities of documentation. As representing clients in court is an essential part of the Dispute Resolution group’s job description, the goal is that trainees also have a chance to attend court proceedings every now and then. The working language in the team is more likely Finnish than in other BA groups, but knowledge of English is also required.

What qualities does your team value in a trainee and when recruiting a trainee?
Obviously, interest in dispute resolution is greatly appreciated. The team’s work requires logical thinking and ability to analyse different situations and detect what legal aspects these situations include. Since matters can concern almost any field of law, a general knowledge of different fields of law is an advantage. Qualities that are valued in a trainee also include precision, diligence, a good command of written and spoken Finnish and English, and argumentation skills. A good trainee also dares to think and bring up their ideas.

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