What is it like to be part of a trial?
In this week’s trainee solicitor blog, the team caught up with Sarupe Uppal. Sarupe gives us an insight into what its like preparing for and attending a trial.
Within the first two weeks of my commercial disputes seat I was involved in a trial at the Commercial Court in the Rolls Building. I did not realise, in the modern world of Alternative Dispute Resolution, how rare it is to get to trial.
The trial was split over three days and involved a great deal of evidence over what was a relatively simple matter: who owned a particular asset. The law firm representing the other side was a well known international firm.
To prepare for the trial I assisted Counsel with research into the evidence produced and prepared trial bundles. Additionally, I liaised with the court before the trial to set up a laptop with internet access. The day before the trial I worked late and was in work early the next day to help make sure everything was in order.
There was some late disclosure of evidence. This meant making the journey from our offices in Tunbridge Wells to the Courts with three large boxes. I think passers by were trying to figure out where exactly we were off to in our suits!
On the day
Our witness gave his evidence from abroad via video link and there was an interpreter situated in the courtroom. The court was equipped with microphones and recording equipment to enable this to happen. This meant that our client was able to give real-time evidence from another country.
During the trial I assisted by making a detailed attendance note. I also helped the interpreter find the correct evidence Counsel referred to in the trial bundles. I even managed to find myself in the witness box! Thankfully this was only to aid the interpreter.
The trial was a public hearing and I would recommend anyone interested in studying law or currently studying law to watch some trials. Just be careful not to shout out “I Object!”