Freshfields launches fintech-focused virtual work experience programme

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By Thomas Connelly on

Students help fictitious client acquire crypto business

Freshfields has joined the growing list of law firms embracing virtual work experience, with the magic circle giant launching an online programme that sees students complete tasks typically undertaken by its junior lawyers.

The virtual offering, dubbed ‘Law and Fintech’, sees participants help a fictitious client overcome a series of legal hurdles as they look to acquire a crypto asset business.

The tasks include a due diligence exercise, advising on a share purchase agreement, considering the antitrust aspects of the transaction, addressing the client’s financial services regulatory concerns, and helping the client manage a dispute.

The firm, which typically recruits around 80 trainees each year, says the programme aims to give students “a taste of life as a commercial lawyer” while enabling them to build their knowledge and understanding of the legal profession.

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Claire Wills, Freshfields London managing partner, commented:

“Increasing access to opportunities across the legal profession is not only the right thing to do, it’s essential for our people, our business and for society. By launching the programme, we hope to provide the tools to enable anyone to explore a career in commercial law.”

The free programme is open to everyone and has no application criteria. It is run in conjunction with Forage, a remote internship provider.

A raft of law firms have launched virtual schemes this year. Slaughter and May created an insight programme, again in conjunction with Forage, while Clifford Chance has one too aimed at sixth formers. More recently, Macfarlanes launched a free app that gives wannabe lawyers a flavour of life as a trainee.

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