A day in the life of a Paralegal: Tosin Babalola

Tosin Babalola, a Paralegal in our Commercial Property department, describes a particular day at Shulmans.

8:45 - 10:00

I arrive at work, check my emails and review my to-do list. I wrote this the previous day to alow me to easily prioritise which tasks need to be completed when I arrive. I have a meeting with my supervisor to discuss a grant of a lease at 10:00, so I print it out, and read and review the title documents and the Heads of Terms for the lease to ensure I am fully prepared.

We are expecting money in from a client for a SDLT (Stamp Duty Land Tax) payment today so I set a reminder for myself to be on the lookout for this.

10:00 - 11:00

During the meeting with my supervisor, she gives me a brief background of the property and explains the process of granting a lease from beginning to end. I take notes which I can refer to in future and create a list of what I need to do at each stage. My role in the process includes contacting the landlord’s solicitor, establishing if the old lease in the title will be removed and requesting the service charge budget from the landlord. These tasks help me develop my knowledge surrounding commercial property and also allow me to gain more confidence when next assisting my supervisor with the grant of a lease.

11:00 - 12:30

I go back to my desk, check my emails and review my tasks for the rest of the day. My role involves supporting a large team and therefore my priorities can often change. In my inbox I have an urgent email from a team secretary asking for a lease and an agreement for a lease to be proofread. After reviewing my list, I respond to the email confirming that I have the capacity to take this on.

12:30 - 13:30

It’s lunchtime. Usually, I bring in my lunch and sit in the Apex and eat it. On some days, I go across to a restaurant that is a stone’s throw from the office with colleagues or, if it is a Friday, I go to the Wellington Place Choir.

13:30 - 14:30

There is a team meeting led by the head of the Commercial Property team, Simon Jackson. Each member of the team gives updates on our work load and priorities so we all have a sense of what everyone else is working on at any particular time. Part of this meeting includes Simon asking what we think could do to make our team more efficient. All of us are encouraged to give our ideas which are noted and reviewed by Simon. I appreciate being asked, as it shows that my opinion is valued within my team.

14:30 - 16:00

I prioritise the proofreading task which came through this morning, making relevant changes and handing it back to the secretary for processing. I check my emails and see that the SDLT money I was waiting for has arrived from the client. I arrange for it to be paid out to her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

16:00 - 17:30

I use this time to go through my emails which have arrived during the day. These range from various tasks from colleagues within the team, asking for my assistance with drafting a rent deposit deed, cancelling a unilateral notice and registering a lease. I deal with some of these immediately and add more substantial tasks to my list for later in the week.

I set a reminder in my calendar to phone Her Majesty’s Land Registry (HMLR) tomorrow to respond to a requisition I received from the Land Registry regarding an application to cancel a unilateral notice.

Before leaving the office, I make a list of what I need to do tomorrow and then go home.