When did you know that you wanted to be a lawyer?
My mum told me when I was about 12 that I had a strong sense of justice and would make a good lawyer. I have pursued law ever since.
What attracts you most to the profession of law?
Mostly, it’s the interpretation of law and application of law to facts that I love. Criminal law in particular is a very fast-paced environment, and I thrive under pressure. I enjoy the thought that what I do will make a difference in someone’s life in a meaningful way.
What are your passions outside of the law?
My family (my husband and two children). I don’t have time for anything else!
If you had your time again, would you choose to practice in law? If not, what else would you choose to do?
I ask myself this question every time I have a tough day! Personally, I wouldn’t choose anything else; I love what I do and for me the sacrifices are worth it. I probably would have become a teacher if I didn’t practice.
If you could only give one bit of advice to new lawyers, what would it be?
It is the same steep learning curve for everyone. Ride the wave and accept that the longer you practice and the better you become, the more you will feel you have to learn.
What would you say are the hazards of this profession?
Burnout is the greatest hazard. It comes in all forms: long hours, stressful working conditions, clients who expect the world of you.
What is your best tip for maintaining sanity in the law?
Accept that you can’t do everything and be everywhere at the one time.
Emma Turnbull is the principal solicitor at Turnbull Lawyers. Holding a Bachelor of Law (LLB) and currently studying her Masters in Law, Emma is committed to ongoing commitment professional development. Emma is a solicitor advocate who appears on a daily basis in the Magistrates’ and County Court as advocate. Emma also maintains a large practice as instructing solicitor in serious indictable trials, including homicides, drugs and crimes of violence.