Alan started his working career in the South African Police Service. During his ten years with the Commercial Crimes Unit he completed his B.Juris, LLB and LLM degrees. He then took up a position at the South African Reserve Bank before taking a sabbatical to do articles for two years.
Six years ago Alan opened his own law practice and has recently purchased new premises. “Your biggest challenge is to satisfy your clients,” he says. “It’s always a good feeling when a difficult matter is satisfactorily resolved.”
On the flip side, dealing with difficult situations can be a little hair-raising at times and the occasional verbal threat keeps you on your toes.
The work hours may be long but the advantages are many. Alan says the one thing he enjoys most about his profession is meeting new people and making a difference in their lives. “When a client comes to you for help and advice, he has a real problem and looks to you for answers,” he explains. “To play an important role in helping to alleviate those problems and bring your client peace of mind is worth the effort.” You have to be diligent in your studies and at the start of your career, but the financial rewards later are a good incentive to keep you going.
A legal degree can open up opportunities in many sectors, not only within the law but also in commerce, banking, mining and the retail sector. Even within the law opportunities are excellent as people’s rights will always be infringed and disputes arise in all aspects of society. “I would encourage all Grade 10, 11 and Matric learners to visit places of employment and spend time learning more about their chosen career,” says Alan. “If you have the qualities we have mentioned and find the law fascinating, a career in the law is worth pursuing.”
Published By: Bronwyn Kemsley