Internship Experience @ VJ Mathew and Co., International Law Firm, Kochi: Case Law Research and Drafting Work, Court Visits

Name, Year and College

Anagha Nair, 3rd-year VIT, School of Law.

Name of the organization and city

VJ Mathew and Co., International Law Firm, Level 2, Johnsara’s Court, Gandhinagar, Kadavanthra, Kochi, Kerala 682020, India.

Duration/Timings

June 01- July 01, 2019. 4 weeks.

Mon-Sat (Saturdays are half working days, which means you have office only till 1:00 pm).

Second Saturday is a non-working day.

Office timings otherwise are 9 am – 5 pm.

This varies slightly if you are scheduled for court visits.

Location/Team Size and Directions:

Kadavanthra is a prime location in Ernakulam. Therefore, you will not find it difficult to locate the office. Please note that the office is actually a residence cum office, wherein the second floor is converted as the office.

If you are intending to use public transport, take a bus to Kadavanthra junction or Kadavanthra stop (ask for the stop near a temple) and from there you may take an auto and tell them North Giri Nagar (even though the address reads Gandhi Nagar).

While I interned here, tasks were mainly given to me by  Advocate Vipin P Varghese (one of the partners of the firm) and Advocate Dhanya Mallar, and I had a great amount of interaction with Adv. Adarsh Mathew (who is another partner of the firm), who is also the son of Advocate VJ Mathew.

The interns are provided with a separate workstation on the third floor which is kind of an extension of the second floor.

Application process

Send an email attaching your CV to cochin[at]vjmathew.com. They will revert back to your mail in case of you being selected for the internship.

First-day formalities

On the first day, as I didn’t want to be late for the office, I reached at around 8:45 am (work time is 9 am- 5 am). I was asked to wait in the waiting area. Advocate Adarsh J. Mathew greeted and briefed about the working specifics required from interns.

I was asked to fill a form for attendance and had to affix photographs alongside our personal details. Interns are required to enter their time of entering the office and leaving the office on this sheet.

Any days of leave will also be marked on the same sheet. You are allowed 2 casual leaves. Then I got to meet Advocate VJ Mathew sir and had a brief talk with him. After which I was shown to my workspace and was directed to Advocate Vipin who we interns are supposed to approach for work and tasks.

Main task

The main tasks involved researches and finding relevant case laws, case studies, translations, drafting. in fact, work here didn’t seem like work but rather a fun way of learning things that I wouldn’t learn otherwise. You are also required to visit the court along with the associates.

This allows you to stay with the matter, as you would be researching and working on different smaller aspects of the case, and thus accompanying for the hearing gives you a more whole idea and helps you understand the actual working of the legal world. Also, this will enable you to have an insight on further research required of you.

It would be a great help if you maintain a small list of the works that you do, on a daily basis, including reports on court visits. This will help you draft a better report, on your internship, which you need to submit towards the end of your tenure, here

What the lawyers looked for were not pages of research and case laws, rather they looked for precise statements of the existing laws and how well one could answer the question asked.

The focus always remained on the question that was asked and what was expected. So, unless you’ve been specifically asked, don’t submit a 15-20-page document filled with citations and case law. What they look for is a clear picture of the law and rules in a concise and coherent note.

Work environment

The working environment is super friendly. All the associates are very accommodative and intern friendly. They are very amicable and you can approach them with the minutest and dumbest doubt you ever have and still be reassured that you won’t be judged or anything on the basis of it.

You have to get your own laptops for working on the days you are scheduled for office work and a notebook to take down things on your court visits.

The best part of your days at the office is the amazingly delicious coffee that you get twice a day (11:00 am and 4:00 pm). They are super refreshing. You can also ask for tea if you aren’t a coffee person.

Best things

Following are some of the perks of interning here:

  • The fabulous learning experience.
  • The aquatic-themed office with lively fishes at the entrance.
  • The occasional informal meetups.
  • The dining space culture where everyone at the firm has lunch together.
  • The prime location of the firm enabling us to go to chill cafes post-work or for lunch.
Bad Things

In my intern period here for 30 days I haven’t come across anything that I could term as a drawback of interning at this place.

Stipend

No stipend

Accommodation

I stayed in a PG named ‘Rosh ladies’ hostel’ in Lissie. You can google it up to find it. I would not say it’s far off but I chose it over other accommodations that were offered nearby as they are super clean and amazing food at minimal rates.

Editor’s Note: You can read an internship experience of VJ Mathew and Co., International Law Firm here. 

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