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A Global career


Celia Richardson

I was seconded to HFW's Shipping team in Dubai for six months, and experienced both contentious and transactional work. I acted on the sale and purchase of vessels, and was also involved in two interesting arbitrations. I was encouraged to take on higher levels of responsibility and enjoyed the challenge of learning about the UAE's legal systems (including those of Dubai's numerous free zones).

HFW's presence in Dubai has been growing quickly. It was exciting to be able to witness this first hand. During my time there, the office expanded into a fresh and open space next door, with a new reception, kitchen, and state-of-the-art meeting rooms. Several associates, paralegals and a senior disputes partner all joined during my secondment. The Dubai office is now one of HFW's biggest international offices, and a key presence in the Middle East.

Dubai has a lot to offer those who live there. Before I arrived, I was added to a mailing list of secondees from a variety of law firms, and it was not long before we were all making the most of the city's numerous brunches, beaches, yachts and malls. For those looking for something a little more cultural, the UAE has plenty of art, architecture and history too. The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi is incredibly beautiful, whilst the Burj Khalifa has some impressive views, and Dubai's old town offers souqs and picturesque boat rides. For those who enjoy travel, Dubai has excellent access to countries such as Oman, Jordan and Sri Lanka, all of which I was lucky enough to visit during my secondment.

My seat in Dubai was a fantastic experience and one that will help shape my legal career. 

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