Fiona Allison is a qualified law accountant and accredited paralegal working at Sprang Terras Ltd in Ayr, and a member of the Society’s Accredited Paralegal Committee

What made you pursue a career as a paralegal?

I was made redundant in 2008, post-credit crunch, from a conveyancing secretarial/cashier job. The next available opportunity was as a cashier for my current employers, so I studied to become a fully qualified law accountant and part qualified management accountant. Private client work seemed to cross over nicely with the cashroom role, and my employers encouraged me to undertake the Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners Diploma. Now, dual qualified, I wear both hats in the office.

Why did you decide to join the committee?

Always up for a new challenge, I opted to sit on the Society’s Education & Training Subcommittee as a lay member for a few years, to get out of my comfort zone rather than getting involved with more familiar areas of work. Despite my lack of expertise in education, the whole experience has been fantastic. When the opportunity arose to join the Accredited Paralegal Committee, I jumped at it.

What have been the highlights for you personally?

I am newly appointed to the committee, but as an accredited paralegal, having the opportunity to train and join the Society’s mentoring programme was a real highlight for me.

What’s your top tip for accredited paralegals?

Unless you want to be, don’t be pigeonholed! Never say no to an opportunity to try something different and get out of your comfort zone.

If you could change only one thing for accredited paralegals, what would it be?

Just general recognition within the profession, and respect for the work that they do, across all areas of law. Many of us know our value and I think the Accredited Paralegal Committee and AP status go a long way in achieving that recognition.

What keeps you busy outside of work?

I am an NFL (American football) nut, and when I’m not watching or Googling for news, I am secretary to the committee of Glasgow Tigers youth American football academy. I love to travel and experience new things. Other than that, I’m a busy working mum.

 

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