James Harvey

Partner, Corporate
University of Oxford – Law

After studying law at Oxford, I seized an opportunity that took me all the way to New York. There, I completed my Masters in US Corporate Law. For me, it was a chance to pursue a dream career in law while really challenging myself. Pushing yourself to learn more is an important quality for a lawyer and it’s something I’ve continued to do throughout my career.

I trained elsewhere and joined Weil in 2006 as an associate, after being attracted to the firm’s unique working culture. I was drawn to Weil’s energy and forward-thinking – in terms of their practice areas, how they work with clients and the overall working environment. There’s no hierarchy here, so everyone works collaboratively and equally as hard. You feel as if you’re all in it together – it’s a great way to work.

At Weil, we believe in long-term hiring. Everyone we hire is a potential partner and this is reflected in our training programme. Trainees are given high levels of responsibility while still receiving extensive support throughout their time with us. This level of focus is made easier by our smaller trainee intake, allowing trainees to develop and reach their full potential.

In my 10 years at Weil, I’ve worked on a variety of different deals. A particularly memorable one was acting for Alstom, a huge French corporate. They were selling part of their business and I was required in Paris for a few days to help work on a document. I stayed to work on the deal which became a very high profile transaction making headlines on both the front and back pages of the newspapers in France. Although it was demanding it was also very exciting. I think that’s something that’s in the DNA of the kind of people who want to work here – you have to thrive in what would be very stressful situations for some people.