Women win advocacy rights in High Court

EDGE & Ellison partner Jayne Willetts and College of Law lecturer Suzanne Fine have each broken new ground in gaining High Court rights of advocacy.

Willets is the only woman solicitor in England and Wales to have been granted rights of audience in High Court civil proceedings while Fine, who qualified a few days later, is the first law lecturer to receive advocacy rights.

Willets was among the first batch of solicitors to successfully complete the Law Society's rights of advocacy residential course and exam.

Fine has gained her rights, for civil and criminal proceedings, through exemption which takes into account her previous advocacy experience, much of it for the CPS.

She says: “It will be very good to get the personal experience which will help my teaching.”

Willets, a commercial litigation specialist, is the second partner at the Birmingham firm to win High Court rights of audience.

She says: “I am delighted to be granted the privilege to appear in the High Court and the opportunity to handle cases from start to finish.”