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Day in the Life of an Akin Trainee, James Lack

By Akin
Book open Reading time: 3 mins

Departments to date: Incentives (first seat), Hedge Funds (current seat)
University: The University of Manchester, The University of Law
Degree: Nuclear Engineering (MEng), GDL, LPC LLM



Arrive at the office. I check my emails for any developments on client matters, as well as market news and knowledge management updates from the BVCA, AIMA, and The Lawyer. Recent interesting updates have covered a prospective court case regarding taxation of carried interest, and the progression of AIFMD II.


Hedge funds departmental daily catch up. All of the team members talk briefly about an interesting matter they’re working on in the coming days, then the partners share any client and firm news, as well as technical know-how.


Send follow up emails on various matters and other administrative tasks. I also draft the agenda for today’s 5 p.m. weekly catch up call with one of our clients.


I start work on drafting tasks. These comprise the majority of my work in hedge funds, and I’ve worked on fund offering documents, subscription documents, procurement agreements, investment advisory agreements, AIFM agreements, CPO delegation agreements, side letters, directors written resolutions, fund launch minutes, and limited partnership agreements – basically the entire suite of fund documents. Sometimes I’m making amendments to existing documents, others I’m creating totally new documents for a fund launch. Being trusted to work on the most important agreements and seeing your work approved by seniors is definitely a highlight of the job.


Lunch with other trainees in the staff cafe. A few of us usually meet, depending upon who’s in the office and available, and chat about our work and seat rotations, as well as current affairs and what’s going on in our personal lives.


Chat with my supervisor or other team members to ask questions about the work I’m doing and about funds law generally.


I continue my drafting from the morning. Often, if my supervisor has calls with clients during the afternoon, I listen in to these too – funds law involves a lot of problem-solving, so it’s interesting to hear issues being discussed and decisions being made, and you learn a lot about specific regulatory issues when you hear them come up in a practical context.


Coffee run with hedge funds team colleagues.


I finish drafting the documents I’m working on. I then run ‘redlines’ – a colour-coded comparison – against the base precedent or previous draft, and print those out and review them, which I find makes it easier to spot any small errors or corrections, to make sure it’s perfect.


I draft an email to the client, explaining what I’ve done, listing all of the documents I’m sending, and asking for review/approval. I send this to my supervisor to review the documents and the email before it goes to the client. Seeing amendments made to the work you’ve done by more experienced lawyers I find to be a great way of learning and improving.


Weekly client catch up call – this is usually led by the partners, so I attend to listen and take notes. It’s interesting to listen in on how all of that client’s matters are progressing, and there’s often something new to learn, particularly from the US partners when they talk about US regulatory issues.


I send out my client email, with any amendments from my supervisor, with the documents I’ve drafted during the day.


I discuss today’s work with my supervisor, for any feedback and advice he might have, and talk about prospective projects I might work on next. I finish off by filing my emails from the day.


Funds group social – we have regular events with the private equity team, as well as with clients, offshore law firms, and charitable events. Today, we’re going Go-boating near Canary Wharf, with go-karting, rounders, and drinks events having featured in the past.