On 29 March 2019, 200 people gathered together at The May Fair Hotel in London for a glamorous gala dinner to celebrate the achievements of paralegals from across the UK. This is the first awards to take place in the UK which focuses on rewarding the Paralegal Sector. The event started with a champagne reception sponsored by Orion Legal Marketing.
The winners from the 12 categories, covering a variety of legal sectors were announced [see list below] and an Outstanding Achievement Award was presented to Baroness Diane Hayter by the Professional Paralegal Register for her support to the paralegal sector.
Rita Leat, Managing Director of The Professional Paralegal Register, the host of these awards, said “The night could not have gone better. We were delighted with the response to these awards. Celebrating the achievements of Paralegals has been long overdue, they are the back bone of the legal sector. The event was a sell out and we are already looking for a bigger venue for 2020. Recognising both winners and finalists was important to us. We had all the finalists on stage as well as the winners which created an atmosphere of true celebration and recognition”.
The judging panel shared their comments when announcing winners relaying the reasons why they had chosen the winner. On the night judge Amir Ali, Chairman of the CCUA said “The event has been amazing, and I was delighted to have been able to judge these awards. The talent was exceptional, and it is great to see Paralegals being recognised”.
Mark Solon, solicitor and Chairman of Wilmington Legal said: “The paralegals are coming! Paralegals specialising in particular fields can do the work of traditional lawyers but need the right training and experience to do as good a job. The awards rewarded the best of the best and provided a place to celebrate paralegals who have done what it takes and more.”
The evening raised £1800 for the Young Citizens, a charity which specialises in helping young people become active, engaged and motivated citizens, who are able to contribute positively to their communities.
Treethorpe were the headline sponsor of the event, Michelle Aldous, Head of Operations and General Manager said ‘We wanted to be the headline sponsor the minute these awards were announced as this is very aligned with our values as a business and it has been fantastic to be able to show our support’
The awards were also sponsored by The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, Heslewood and Grant Solicitors, Institute of Paralegals, Clerks Room Direct, Central Law Training, Lawyer Checker, Golden Leaves, Which Legal, F-Lex, Stephen James Partnership and Auscript.
Best Family Law Paralegal – Dawn Gore, Trethowans LLP
Best Trademark Paralegal – Rebecca McBride, Pinset Masons
Best ADR Paralegal – Maria Arpa
Best Employment/HR Paralegal – Michael Coe, Dimensions 888
Best Conveyancing Paralegal – Kay Liddle, PM Property Lawyers
Best Pro Bono Paralegal – Ashleah Skinner
Best Probate Research Paralegal – Lauren Geary, Treethorpe
Will Writing Organisation of the Year – Heritage Will Writers
Paralegal Recruitment Organisation of the Year – EJ Group
Best Law Firm – Paralegal Development – Dentons UK and Middle East LLP
Paralegal Business of the Year – Fraser and Fraser
Paralegal of the Year – Leah Caprani, Winckworth Sherwood LLP
2019 Highly Commended
Best Pro Bono Paralegal – Lyn Berry
Best Probate Research Paralegal, Neil Fraser – Fraser & Fraser
Paralegal of the Year
Caroline Spencer Boulton