Internship Experience @ Kochhar & Co., Delhi: Case Law Research Work, Preparing Case Notes

NAME, COLLEGE, YEAR

DVS Yasaschandra, National Law University Odisha, 2nd Year

ORGANISATION AND ADDRESS

Kochhar & Co., Tower A, 11th Floor, Tower A, DLF Towers, Jasola, New Delhi, India.

DURATION OF INTERNSHIP

1 Month – 6th May to 4th June 2019

9.30 to 6.30 (5-day week)

HOW YOU APPLIED?

Early email to hr[at]kochhar.com and occasional follow-ups. The slots get filled in real fast. Make sure you apply early.

FIRST DAY FORMALITIES, FIRST IMPRESSION

On my first day, I was asked to report by 9:30 AM. The office is situated in the 9th, 11th and 12th floors of the building. The reception and the main office are on the 11th floor. I was asked to fill out a form and was given a worksheet and feedback form.

In the worksheet, I had to fill in the details of the work, date wise along with the names of the Associate/Partner I worked under. They would, later on, sign on the same.

I then proceeded to the intern workstation on the 12th floor. My workspace had a PC. We were not allowed to use our laptops, even as much as bring them to the office.

Kochhar takes confidentiality very seriously. I was then told that the associates start coming in at 10:30 AM and that I can go to the 11th floor to get work after 11:00 AM.

The end time for interns is 6:30 PM. You might have to stay back after that if you have work, but that is not the case usually. This is because most of the associates only come to the office at 11.00.

Usually, the assignments have to be submitted to them only after 12:00 PM (unless there is a paucity of time or if the work needed to be done on the same day itself).

So, interns always have the option of coming back the next day at 9.30 and complete the assignment before 12:00 PM. I only had to stay back till 8:00-8:30 PM twice in the 4 weeks there.

MAIN TASKS

The tasks assigned depends on the associate/partner you approach for work. Associates give clerical work like printing documents or typing, a few ask for research on a particular proposition, case laws or research notes (where you have to explain the position of the law on the same, arguments in their favour).

I was mostly assigned case law research and preparing research notes though I had to do two full days of the print job (which is not great).

Here, unlike other firms, the interns were not divided into teams, so, you have to be ready to work for all the departments, even simultaneously sometimes. You get work only if you ask for it. Interns had to go to the 11th floor 5-6 times a day to get work from the Associates.

Once assigned, the quality of the work has to be outstanding to get more work from the same associate/team. I noticed that the word about the interns goes around in the office, especially after when I was called for work from an associate I have never approached.

So, if you do a good job in the first few assignments, you automatically get called for more challenging tasks. From my second week onwards, I didn’t have to go to the 11th floor get work. I’d either have my plate full or get called for work.

There are no court visits for interns at Kochhar, unless you work with the associate on a particular case, help him with case law research and the date falls within the period of the internship.

I once researched on a particular proposition, the matter was listed for the next day. Luckily, the Associate asked me to join him for the court. It was a very good experience. Unfortunately, by the time the next date for the hearing came, my internship ended. That was the only case for which I had researched and attended the proceedings.

Towards the end of my internship, the interns were shifted to the 9th floor since the corporate team was shifting to the 12th.

That was the first time I went to the 9th floor, only to realise that the IPR team works there. So, for those IPR enthusiasts who might want to intern here, do drop by the 9th floor.

GOOD THINGS

The associates there are very welcoming toward interns who wish to learn. I had one of the best interactions with the litigation team there.

I once had to go to the office on Saturday for an assignment which needed urgent attention. That was the best day of my internship. Besides the fact that I had to come to the office on a Saturday, the interactions with the litigation team and the chai breaks we took were amazing.

The environment there is very healthy conducive to learning and is probably the best thing at Kochhar.

BAD THINGS

The interns were asked not to get their laptops to work. There were only 6 PCs on the 12th floor. I was the third intern to join, so I didn’t have a problem with getting hands on one of the PCs but as the number of interns grew, it became increasingly difficult to adjust.

The interns were asked to share PCs. That arrangement only worked when at least one intern was free. There was a time when all the interns had time-bound assignments. That day was a circus there.

Alternate arrangements were made and two new laptops were given by the IT team. But there were 10 interns with 8 PCs. I only had to share my PC on the last three days of my internship and that too was a huge problem for me.

I can only imagine how difficult it would have been for the others who have been sharing since the beginning. So, if you are the 6th intern to join there, you are in soup.

STIPEND

No

ACCOMMODATION AND COMMUTE TO THE OFFICE

The office is situated in Jasola. The nearest metro stations, which are a share auto ride away are Jasola Apollo and Jasola Vihar. I stayed in Govind Puri (two metro stops away), affordable PG for one month. You can also try adjoining places in Kailash Colony, like East of Kailash.

CONCLUSION

This was my first law firm internship and was a very good one. There was a lot of learning in the process. If you are an enthusiast, willing to learn, Kochhar is undoubtedly a good internship.

Pro tip: Never say no to any Associate/Partner when they ask you if you are packed with work. I was once doing 4 assignments for 4 different Associates at a time.

Remember that the word about the interns goes around in the office. The more you work, the more work you get.

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