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Partner Profile: Flo Mitchell

Partner Profile: Flo Mitchell

We ask a law firm partner a series of rapid-fire questions about their career. This time: Flo Mitchell from Etheringtons Solicitors.

 

Which firm are you with?

Etheringtons Solicitors

 

When did you join that firm?

2005

 

When were you made a partner of that firm?

2014

 

Which firm were you at most recently prior to this?

Appleton & Co

 

What practice group are you with?

Head of Litigation

 

What has been the most significant change to your practice area during your career?

It’s the change led by businesses and individuals to get more ‘bang for your buck’ in the post GFC era.  There are not many clients who want to follow the “litigation warfare” model that was once popular.  Instead, there is a strong shift towards early mediation of disputes, with clients much more focused on a swift resolution and the cost and time benefits that this brings.

 

What has been a major career highlight for you?

When I was at the Bar, I appeared in the House of Lords in proceedings challenging the legality of Emergency Law provisions. Even using the robing room was exciting, as it was in a private room in Westminster and I had an ‘access all areas’ pass!  What surprised me about the hearing was how their Lordships were not robed, but in suits, yet Counsel was robed. They were very pleasant to appear before and it was extraordinary to be there.  More recently, I have been involved in a Royal Commission hearing (into Trade Union corruption) which has been very challenging as it all has happened at lightning speed.

 

What do you like about being a lawyer?

Helping people solve their disputes and being able to give not just advice about the law, but also advice on how to best achieve the outcome they desire and what is best for their business as a whole.

I love getting a case strategy right. When it all goes to plan, it’s a great feeling of satisfaction.

I also really enjoy doing Court work.  Being able to persuade a Judge or Registrar to accept your position is a great feeling, and I like being able to persuade others to agree with me.

 

What do you find challenging?

Probably the most challenging thing is when there is a clash of several cases at critical stages and trying to stay on top of everything.  It can be difficult when you are in a hearing and still have to keep the wheels turning smoothly with the team back in the office.  As a partner, I am now also coming to terms with the extra demands of looking at the firm as a business, becoming pro-active in marketing, managing staff and planning ahead, whilst still having time for a personal life.

 

What do you enjoy doing when you are not working?

It would have to be spending time with my sons Ryan (7), George (5) and Max (3) and my husband.  Having three boys close in age keeps me going from morning until midnight!  We are very lucky to live near beaches and a National Park, so we spend a lot of time outdoors. I am also very social and love BBQ’s and a fine wine – I am Irish after all!

 

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