I am retiring from the practice on 30 June 2018 after more than 46 years. As a regular contributor to CBP Focus, this will be my final contribution.
It has been a privilege to have had a career with the one practice (particularly one as prestigious as ours) over that period and to have served a broad range of clients predominantly in the property area of the law who have offered a wonderful spectrum of interesting and challenging matters.
I have also been fortunate to have built so many lasting relationships with people both within Colin Biggers & Paisley and its client base.
Having a little time to reflect on the last 46 years, the extent and pace of change is the thing that stands out the most for me.
When I commenced at Colin Biggers & Paisley in 1972, the only means of communication was mail and you got two mail deliveries a day. The practice of law, compared to today, was quite genteel in that clients were quite happy for you take a month to draft a document and you had plenty of time to thoroughly consider issues due to client expectations and the fact that technology was not constantly demanding your attention and immediate response.
Nowadays, of course, we are all use to and addicted to technology which offers opportunities in relation to working beyond the way that one did in 1972 (only sitting behind a desk from 8.30 am to 5.30 pm).
The practice of law itself has changed markedly.
The law has evolved from a profession which just delivered to clients what the law applicable to a situation was to a profession which now (quite rightly) has to concentrate on practical solutions in the context of the client's business objectives. All firms nowadays also partner with their clients in so many ways (including charitable endeavours) that the relationship between lawyers and client bears no resemblance to what it was when I commenced practice.
In the 1970s the practice of law was more focused on individuals but nowadays it is more focused on servicing corporations, government instrumentalities and the community. However, individual client legal needs and requirements are still important and with the amassing of family wealth, blended families and other sociological changes means that the needs of the individual client are significantly more complex and require the focus of lawyers to assist the clients in these areas.
I would like to record my thanks publicly to the partners and staff of Colin Biggers & Paisley over 46 years for the support that I have received as well as the many clients who have entrusted their legal affairs to myself and my team. I know that those clients will, following my departure, be well cared for by the wonderful Property, Commercial and Wills and Estate Planning teams which this practice has across all three states.
As many of you know, I am taking the opportunity, while I am able, to spend time helping those less fortunate than myself in this next phase of my life. I feel I have had a fortunate life and that the little charity work that I have done does not repay the good fortune that I have been granted. I am pleased that the partners of Colin Biggers & Paisley have asked me to remain associated with the practice in relation to some of the CBP Foundation activities and in other administrative functions, but I am also looking forward to spending more time with family and trying to learn how to slow down (probably a totally futile endeavour).
I wish you all a long, healthy and successful life.
Farewell and may your God care for you.
This is commentary published by Colin Biggers & Paisley for general information purposes only. This should not be relied on as specific advice. You should seek your own legal and other advice for any question, or for any specific situation or proposal, before making any final decision. The content also is subject to change. A person listed may not be admitted as a lawyer in all States and Territories. © Colin Biggers & Paisley, Australia 2020.