UK (University of Chichester) Supreme Court judge Lord Briggs offers inspirational words to Chichester’s aspiring lawyers

Justice of the Supreme Court Lord Michael Briggs has offered words of advice to future lawyers at the University of Chichester.

Lord Briggs, who has presided over several high-profile legal cases, was speaking as part of an event intended to get more young people interested in law.

The Right Hon Lord Briggs of Westbourne urged students from the University’s law degrees to “consult your own conscience” and not to “refuse a case outside of existing experience” to get ahead in the profession.

The Supreme Court Justice, the first lawyer in his family, was appointed in 2017 following a historic career at the forefront of law, and is commonly known for his reform work intending to create more affordable dispute resolution procedures.

He advocated for equity within law, adding: “Equity is why I love the law; it changes it from a set of rules to something more coherent. Our law would be greatly deficient if equity was not there.

During the talk, which also included pupils from nearby schools, Lord Briggs described his journey from earning his undergraduate degree in history, before finding a passion for law and eventually becoming a Supreme Court Justice after years of hard work and dedication.

The event was part of a University initiative giving law students access to high-profile guests and professionals to prepare them for their future careers.

Lord Briggs also promoted the use of technology in the industry, including the use of cameras in the Supreme Court, adding that it “serves access to justice”, and spoke strongly about how the law is not keeping up with the issues surrounding global warming.

The talk and subsequent networking event allowed students to question Lord Briggs as well as other industry experts and legal professionals in the Law department’s latest initiative to take learning outside of the lecture hall and gain relevant real-world experience.

Senior Lecturer Dr Amy Elkington, who oversees the Law programmes, said: “We were so pleased to welcome Lord Briggs to the University. We pride ourselves on giving our students occasion to hear from some of the great legal minds of our time, as well as opportunities to develop wider knowledge and employability skills. Lord Briggs gave such an insightful talk about the role of the English courts in ensuring global corporate social responsibility and the immeasurable importance of having a fair and accessible civil justice system.”

Closing the event, Lord Briggs offered his biggest piece of advice to students, and said: “Keep the balance of your life right. I’m still a happy lawyer because of it. Burn the midnight oil when you need to, but make time for your family and for your social life.”