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Meet the Team: Harry Johnston-Sluka, Community Care Team

Now part of the Community Care Team, Harry Johnston-Sluka also completed his training contract at Invicta Law, qualifying as a solicitor in April 2021. During his training, Harry worked across a number of teams, gaining experience in a wide range of areas. Before joining the Community Care Team, Harry practised in both commercial and public law dispute resolution/litigation acting on behalf of local authorities. Harry has been recognised by clients for his helpful and responsive approach to legal advice and is a valued member of the team.

As part of our Meet the Team series, we caught up with Harry to find out more about him and his work at Invicta Law.

How did you become a solicitor?
I studied history at university and while trying to work out what I wanted to do after that, I did some work experience at a criminal defence law firm in London. I had always found true crime and courtroom-based dramas interesting and considered it would be exciting to work in those areas. Although being a lawyer is not like it is depicted on television and in films, I found the work very interesting and got to assist with and sit in on some interesting court cases. I became keen on qualifying as a solicitor through that work experience. After doing some more research about different areas of law and talking to solicitors practising in other areas of law, I decided it was something I would pursue once I finished my undergraduate degree.

What drew you to working at Invicta Law?
I was attracted to working at Invicta Law because of the types of work the firm is involved with and the firm’s client base. Working for local authorities and public sector clients more generally in areas such as judicial review and other public law related claims, as well as being involved in working in adult social welfare cases and on Coroners’ inquests, was what attracted me to working for the firm initially and staying on past qualification as a solicitor.

What do you like about working in the Community Care Team?
I am very interested in the work we do in this team and find it rewarding. I also enjoy working with my colleagues at the firm who are friendly and helpful, as well as talented lawyers. I have always had an interest in politics and history, and this in particular can feed into the main area of work I do here, advising local authorities on their duties towards Unaccompanied Asylum-Seeking Children (UASC).

In addition to this, there is the opportunity to be involved in cases that go to various types of courts and to experience these different court arenas. I oversee cases in the High Court and Upper Immigration Tribunal when representing local authorities in judicial review challenges to age assessments of UASC. I also work on cases in the Court of Protection and at Coroners’ inquests which allows me to experience quite a range of different courts and tribunals and different interesting areas of law.

What’s your favourite thing about the work you do?
The part I enjoy the most about being a lawyer is being able to use the expertise we garner in different areas of law to help our clients manage difficult situations. It is very rewarding to be able to offer guidance and assistance to your client, particularly when it is clear they appreciate that guidance and assistance. This is especially true of local authority clients who often have to navigate a minefield of potentially costly legal pitfalls in the work they do on behalf of the public and some of the most vulnerable people in society and it is rewarding to feel you can help to guide them on how to do this in a way that is expected by the courts.

When you get a break from work what do you most like to do?
When I do have time off from work it is generally to go on holidays, and I am keen on travelling to experience different places and other cultures. I also enjoy going camping and hiking, particularly if a dog is coming along, and spending time with friends in the local pub. Football and cricket are also keen interests of mine, although these days I watch a lot more than I play.

Just finally, what would people be most surprised to know about you?
I’m half-German but can only speak about 20 German words, to my shame.

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