The Blue Pencil: Did you always plan on studying law?
Sonia Chauhan: Hehe, no. I am an average Indian kid – I let my parents choose the subject of my higher studies. My parents wanted me to be a Dentist so I took up science at school. Somewhere in my 12th standard, my father had this epiphany that ‘law’ would suit my outspoken personality more than dentistry. He got me the Universal prep guide and I set to work.
TBP: How was your time at college? Are there any memorable experiences that you could share with us?
SC: How does one put it – college was a mixed bag. I met some really awesome people there. The students of AIL are hands down it’s shining armour. The crowd of AIL makes it way more interesting than any other local college and truly gives the feel that it is a national level college.
There are many memorable experiences in my mind, but it wouldn’t be right to spill the beans on so many people! So, yeah, I’ll pass this one time.
TBP: What were your major interests while you were at college?
SC: I was very interested in Human Rights. Though I majored in Corporate Laws but I closely followed the subjects taught to the Human Rights students through friends and seniors.
Another interest of mine was to intern at differently structured entities practicing law in India. AIL gives this wonderful opportunity of quarterly internships to students, which is mandatory in your senior years. The Placement Cell helped us with email addresses and contacts for law firms and companies. So, I interned almost everywhere ~ Law Firms, Senior Advocates, Company Legal Departments, PSUs, Insurance Firms, NGOs, you name it.
Internship helps a law student immensely because it really teaches you how to be at a workplace. Your time at an internship is you planting yourself in a completely alien environment, and make your place there in a short span of time. If you are a good intern, rest assured, you will be a great employee.
TBP: You’re currently working with Talwar Advocates, what does your work entail?
SC: Thanks for asking this question! I am a senior member of the TA team. We are an independently operating legal division of a popular Intellectual Property Search Firm – TT Consultants. We general look after the legal requirements of domestic and international corporates as well as individual inventors who wish to either set up their business in India or want to file for Intellectual Property in India and the US.
My work entails supervising the drafting and filing of IP ~ Trademark, Patents and Copyright. I also file and look after the Indian IP litigation of major international corporates and law firms. I also build corporate and funding strategies for start-ups.
You can learn more about TA and our services at www.TalwarAdvocates.com.
TBP: Describe your experience at OSC Export Services Pvt. Ltd., in what ways did working there help you?
SC: Yes, definitely. OSC works for the lawyers of Clifford Chance and its various global offices. I used to work with the guys at London (Head Office) and Singapore, and also went there and worked at the CC offices (London & Singapore) for several months. This opportunity gave me great international exposure and I really got the hang of what makes a great law firm tick. I learnt work ethics and research parameters from the best lawyers in the World.
My clients at TA usually are international bodies. My time at CC as a Junior Lawyer when I watched my seniors work with major clients, helps me so much now in client liaison and to understand their expectations.
TBP: Anything on the college bucket list that was left undone?
SC: Getting drunk at a college party. No, I never did that. N.E.V.E.R.
Get a Scholarship for a full year
Settle some scores (or maybe not)
TBP: What’s next? Any major future plans?
SC: My future plan, work wise, is to build a solid team of lawyers at TA. I am here for good so I am going all the way through to secure this plan. As we grow in the profession, we constantly learn that managing people is as important as managing projects.