Career Paths

At Ellis Jones we strongly believe in encouraging all of our staff to develop and fulfil their potential. We provide opportunities for you to progress within the firm and support you in your career aspirations.

Many of our legal support staff choose to progress their careers with us by studying for a CILEX qualification. Our Paralegals have progressed to become Trainee Solicitors and many of our Trainee Solicitors have progressed to becoming Associates and then on to become Partners.

Even our Managing Partner was a Trainee Solicitor at Ellis Jones.

“I started at the firm 30 years ago in 1986 as a Trainee Solicitor (Articled Clerk back then!). I was keen to progress and was given the opportunity to do so. At the tender age of 28, I became one of the youngest Equity Partners in the country and from day 1 was very much part of the management of the firm. I assumed the role of Managing Partner in 1999 and have been allowed to develop into that role. I am committed to creating an environment where everyone is encouraged to achieve personal excellence and to giving everyone in the firm the opportunity to further their careers in the same way in which I was. That philosophy is reflected in the fact that more than a third of the Partners and half of the Associates in the firm started here as Trainees. Long may that continue!”

Nigel Smith, Managing Partner.

Lauren Day (Partner) also started at Ellis Jones as a Trainee Solicitor in 2007.

“After completing my training contract with Ellis Jones – which was both engaging and challenging – I qualified into the firm’s Dispute Resolution team. Having received excellent support and training I was made an Associate in 2012 and a partner in December 2013. I feel that my rapid progression to partner reflects the firm’s commitment to support and development for their staff. I doubt that I would have had such opportunities at other firms”

Lauren Day, Partner & Head of Dispute Resolution.

Our Head of Employment, Kate Brooks, has also worked her way up from trainee.

I started my training contract at Ellis Jones in 2009, I qualified into the Employment Department in September 2011. I was promoted to Associate and Head of the Department in 2013. I had a baby girl in September 2015 and was promoted to Senior Associate while I was on maternity leave at the start of 2016. Ellis Jones supported me in a flexible return to work in 2016, I currently work flexibly from each of our offices, remotely from home and have flexible hours so that I can spend time with my daughter. I have recently been promoted to Partner (effective from January 2018). I really appreciate the support that Ellis Jones has given me through the years, particularly in relation to my return to work following maternity leave and supporting me to become a Partner”

Kate Brooks, Partner & Head of Employment Law/HR Services.

Gina Emerson started at Ellis Jones as a Placement Student in 2016.

“I joined Ellis Jones in August 2016 as a placement student whilst studying an LLB Law Degree at Bournemouth University. I gained experience in a range of different departments to include Marketing, Family, Personal Injury and Banking & Finance Litigation. I instantly felt part of the Ellis Jones family and gained invaluable legal experience. On my return to university, I secured a part-time paralegal role in the Banking and Finance litigation department of the Firm. This enabled me to continue to gain further experience and develop my legal skills. In September 2018, whilst continuing to work part-time as a paralegal, I embarked on the LPC at the University of Law. The Firm have been extremely supportive during this time and the hands on experience I have gained to date certainly gave me an advantage and head start on the course. I am lucky enough to be continuing my career progression with Ellis Jones and will be commencing a Training Contract in September 2019. With the supportive nature and robust training framework provided by Ellis Jones, I feel I will one day become the successful solicitor I have always aspired to be”

Gina Emerson, Paralegal (Banking & Finance Litigation).

Hannah Roberts, who currently works as a Paralegal in the Employment Department, shows clear progression.

In February 2013 I was employed by Ellis Jones as the secretary to the Head of the Employment Department. In December 2014, after showing an active interest in employment law and asking for additional work to gain experience and knowledge, the firm both encouraged and supported me in pursuing a legal qualification through the CILEx route. In April 2016 I was promoted to paralegal and I became an Associate member of CILEx in May 2017. I am currently working towards my Level 6 qualification. I am very grateful to the firm for their commitment to my training and career development, particularly as I didn’t think I’d ever have the opportunity to study and practice law having not attended university”

Hannah Roberts, Paralegal (Employment Law).

Katie Taft (Partner) started at Ellis Jones as a Trainee Solicitor in 2008.

“After completing my training contract with Ellis Jones in 2010 I qualified into the firm’s Family team. I had spent almost 9 months in the department during my two year training contract and knew that family law was my passion. Ellis Jones have consistently provided me with support, encouragement and mentoring throughout my career which has allowed me to pursue my career goals. I was promoted to Associate Solicitor in 2013 and to Senior Associate Solicitor in 2016. In January 2018 I was appointed as a Partner of the firm joining a team of Partners, many of whom also trained at Ellis Jones. The firm’s commitment to “growing their own” is unrivalled by other firms in the local area and in turn, creates an environment of loyalty, teamwork and trust throughout the partnership and across the firm generally”

Katie Taft, Partner (Family).

Victoria Batstone started as a Paralegal in our Family Department in 2012.

“I started with Ellis Jones as a Paralegal in their Family Department in 2012 during my placement year from Bournemouth University. Following this, I carried on working for Ellis Jones part-time across all their departments until completion of my degree. After completing my law degree I came back to Ellis Jones fulltime as a Paralegal and began the CILEx Graduate Diploma in Law in 2014. Ellis Jones supported my career progression and I enrolled at University of Law in Guildford in 2016 to study the Legal Practice Course part-time together with a Masters. At this time, I was aiming towards qualifying as a Chartered Legal Executive and then converting this to become a Solicitor. I completed the Legal Practice Course with a Distinction and a Masters in Law. I qualified as a Chartered Legal Executive in January 2019 and as a Solicitor on 1st March 2019. Ellis Jones have been instrumental in my career progression and have supported me at all times all the way. I am looking forward to having a long and happy career within the firm”

Victoria Batstone, Paralegal (Family).

Maria Redman started as Solicitor in our Dispute Resolution Department in 2018.

“I am a Solicitor in the Dispute Resolution team, specialising in dealing with commercial litigation disputes, insolvency and debt recovery work. I have worked at the firm since May 2018. My legal career began at a local regional firm, working as an Administration Assistant and within a year, I was promoted to a paralegal. During this time, I decided I wanted to pursue a career in law. I completed all of my studies whilst working full time and eventually qualified as a Chartered Legal Executive in 2015. After qualifying, I decided to continue my studies to become a Solicitor. I was required to undertake part of the Graduate Diploma in Law (with partial exemptions) and the Legal Practice Course, but due to being a Chartered Legal Executive, I was exempt from the requirement to undertake a training contract. I qualified as a Solicitor in September 2017. During my time at the firm, I have received excellent support and training from my colleagues and the firm invests heavily in encouraging its staff to learn and develop their skills, which is fantastic. There is also a great amount of support for junior lawyers with the firm’s mentoring scheme, providing skills that you don’t necessarily get taught during your legal studies, such as time recording and networking skills.”

Maria Redman, Solicitor (Dispute Resolution)

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