The Lawyer Inquiry: Suzanne Fine

Suzanne Fine was born in London, where she currently lives. She is a practising barrister and head of the Bar Vocational Course at the College of Law in London.

What was your first job?

Prosecuting for the British Transport Police in 1976.

What was your first ever salary as a lawyer?

£20 for that first brief, which I received about a year later!

What would you have done if you hadn’t become a lawyer?

I would have made more direct use of my Maths degree.

Which law could you live without?

Anything to do with wills. For some years I was a “legal eagle” on a London radio phone-in show, and almost every other call was a problem to do with wills.

What was your most embarrassing professional moment?

My client was giving evidence at Barnet Magistrates’ Court when suddenly his ex-wife leapt out of the public gallery and stabbed him in the chest. I was actually struck dumb, which doesn’t happen very often!

What car do you drive?

Fiat.

Which famous person would you like to go out with?

Bob Dylan.

Where would you go to eat?

The Vegetarian Garden, Wanchai, Hong Kong.

What’s the best thing on TV?

Frasier.

Which movie do you wish you’d appeared in?

Something Wild with Melanie Griffiths.

What’s your most often-worn piece of clothing?

A navy trouser suit.

What book(s) are you reading at the moment?

A Civil Action by Jonathan Harr, Super Teaching by Eric Jensen.

What is your all-time favourite record?

With a Little Help from My Friends – Joe Cocker.

What piece of advice would you give to anyone entering the profession now?

Make sure you apply for a course which is likely to help you succeed in your career. Go and look for yourself at the different institutions.

What do you like about yourself?

When something has to be done, I do it straight away.

What do you hate about yourself?

My compulsive need to keep busy.

Where would you most like to be right now?

On the beach in Greece, which is where I’ll be when this is published.