With the ‘five questions for’ series individual RMSC members get the opportunity to introduce themselves to the network. In this edition Sophie Stein talks about her role as as a lawyer at DOCK Legal Experts.
What does a typical day for you look like?
To be honest, when working as a lawyer there is no such thing as a typical day, since the type of work varies depending on the type of cases you’re working on. However, unless I have a hearing, the order in which I execute the various works each day is generally the same.
Normally, I come into the office at 9:00 in the morning. I have a coffee and then start checking and answering my emails. The rest of what I do depends greatly on the content of my inbox. If there are no urgent matters, I start working on my to do list for that day.
The work can vary from preparing for a hearing to doing legal research in order to draft a legal opinion or meeting with clients to discuss a new matter. If an urgent matter has arisen, or arises during the day, this will take precedence, which results in me dropping whatever I am working on. This for instance happens when a client wants to arrest a vessel, which is due to leave the Netherlands on short term.
My workday usually ends around 18:30, unless it is very busy or I am working on an urgent matter. So my day ends when the work is done.
What was the best advice (workwise) someone gave you?
A former colleague of mine advised me to always record everything you discuss or agree upon in an email, in order to prevent discussion about the content later on.
How could you be of help to others in the industry or RMSC?
I can offer others in the industry or the RMSC legal advice about matters concerning transport law, maritime law, insurance- and liability law and environmental criminal law if this would ever be necessary.
Furthermore, I am part of the global community ‘Lean in’, which is dedicated to helping women achieve their ambitions. I am part of a ‘Lean In-circle’ in Rotterdam, which consists out of a group of 11 women who have been working for about 5 years at a variety of companies in the Netherlands. We provide support to each other on topics like career growth, combining career ambitions and family life etc. I would be able to introduce likeminded women to the global community ‘Lean in’ community and possibly my ‘Lean In-circle’, if there is space.
And lastly: What’s in the news which relates directly to your profession?
Most recently I would have to say the news about the ‘EVERGIVEN’ blocking the Suez Canal. A blockage of this caliber results in huge damages all around the world. Not only for the cargo interests but also for shipowners dealing with i.e. damage due to delays. When damages run this high, lawyers generally tend to become involved. After all, when it comes to maritime claims legally the Owners of the vessel have the right to limit their liability by setting up a limitation fund. This has also happened here. If there are losses suffered by cargo interests then legal representation will be required to lodge claims within the limitation fund as part of any recovery action.