You are currently not logged in. Please log in here.

Alumna of the month – May 2012

Dawn Oliver
LLB Law, 1990

Robert Humphreys

After completing her Law degree at LSBU in 1990 and LPC in 2003, Dawn has been busy setting up her own employment legal practice. Dawn has represented a number of high profile cases and offers yearly placements to LSBU law students.

Dawn started studying at LSBU on a direct access course in 1986 and having always had an interest in law, she decided to embark on LLB Law course. “I am very pleased I chose to study at Southbank, I loved the course and found the lecturers very supportive and approachable.”

As soon as Dawn completed her course she secured a job as a Solicitors Clerk and started partaking in voluntary work at Lewisham Law Centre and note taking at the Employment Tribunal. During this time Dawn returned to LSBU part-time to complete her LPC.

Whist at Lewisham Law Centre Dawn actively got involved with a variety of cases, one victimisation claim in particular stood out to her. The individual had contacted the centre seeking legal advice for a claim against their employer. Dawn reviewed the case and took the evidence to the practising Barrister at the centre. “I had gained quite a lot of experience by this time, the Barrister agreed with my arguments and encouraged me to take on the case myself.” Dawn proceeded with the claim and took the organisation to a tribunal, and won the case. “I didn’t think twice about leading on the case, although I was nervous my experience from Southbank helped me to become confident and assertive. I was delighted when we won the case; it encouraged me to set up my own practice.”

Dawn studied Employment and EU Law whilst at LSBU and having gained work experience in this field, realised it was an area of interest.  Dawn completed her LPC in 2003 and set up her own legal practice, Employment Advocacy Services Ltd  in 2004. The practice specialises in employment law issues, advising and representing employees on legal matters concerning unfairness or illegal treatment in the workplace.

Although the practice mainly focuses on the welfare on the employee, Dawn has recently started running training courses and seminars for employers. Guest speakers such as a QC Andrew Hogarth QC 12 KBW (12 Kings Bench Walk)  attend the seminar to educate organisations on employment law. “Often small start-up companies are not always aware of the legalities involved and can often end up with a claim against them, potentially leading them to close the company”.

Since setting up her organisation Dawn has taken on a number of high profile cases and has secured the majority of her contracts through recommendations. Dawn is still actively involved with LSBU and in 2007 she started offering placements to LSBU law students, and is still doing so now. “It is my way of giving back to the University and saying thanks you for all of the help and support I had at LSBU when I was studying.”

Plans for the future
Dawn plans to develop her company by expanding the number of employees and services she offers. Her aim is to organise a series of seminars, running at least three a year and offering CPD points. Dawn mentioned she would like to explore the opportunities of expanding legal advice to family and housing and would like to be in a position to provide training contracts for LPC graduates.

We wish Dawn the best of luck for the future and look forward to hearing how her practice develops and grows.