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February 12, 2020

A day in the life of a Summer Clerk

Hot sandy beaches, chill with ice-cream, festivals and long light evenings are just a few of the things that say “summer”. For Alicia, however, and for many other law clerks like her, it’s been a couple of months of cramming in as much learning about law firm life as possible, before heading back to uni.

As a follow up to the post (way back in November), we caught up with Alicia to get the lowdown on her time with us.

What have you been up to and any highlights?

I have been lucky enough to be involved in a whole range of different things during my time here such as trade mark filing, management and research, company law issues, drafting and negotiating contracts, and litigation. This is where I experienced my first sojourn into discovery. Research was another area where I hadn’t had much exposure to, as an example, looking into new and exciting technology and how the law can work around this.

I’ve really enjoyed learning the processes relating to trade marks and behind the scenes of litigation. Also, seeing a range of other issues which come up long before anything reaches the court rooms. It has also been really cool to see technology products that I had researched becoming available to the public. Oh and I also got paid to go shopping for one of the firms' international clients.

The team here are great, really inclusive and relaxed. I’ve had a lot of fun on the HGM netball team, although the realisation that none of the team was about to get a national netball call up took some accepting!

What advice would you give others seeking a summer internship?

Dispel any misconceptions that law firms aren’t approachable. Everyone is friendly and open to answering any questions that I had (partners included). They all took time to share their knowledge - the hardest part was asking the questions! The other piece of advice would be to get involved with as much as possible with everything a firm does, to get a taste for all the different areas of law the firm engages with.

We are going to miss you Alicia, thanks for being such a trooper both on and off the court!

Summer clerk recruitment with us

Clerking at law firms can be a daunting experience. As a boutique firm, we pride ourselves on our culture, the team and the extraordinary clients we have the pleasure of working with. As finalist in the 2019 NZ Lawyer awards for Employer of Choice category, we aspire to offer everyone that comes through our doors a great experience.

Applications will open in mid-March for this years' programme - keep posted on our website and social media for updates. In the meantime we're more than happy to help if you have any questions about the programme - get in touch.

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Recently a court in Shenzen, China, awarded damages to the tech giant Tencent as a result of a finding of copyright infringement – the work in question was written by Dreamwriter, an automated news-writing system developed by Tencent.

However, as AI applications become more autonomous, and make creative decisions with minimal human input, a question arises as to whether this is the right outcome. 

Our Copyright Act is currently under review and one of the questions MBIE has posed relates to whether the current rules relating to computer generated works are still fit for purpose and whether any changes are required. The first round of submissions are now closed, but watch this space if you would like to keep up to date on where we land on this issue.       

If you have any questions relating to adoption or use of AI technology, please get in touch.

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