ULaw student moots way to victory
19 February 2016
ULaw GDL student Otis Graham, has won the first annual Bristol PSU Mooting competition.
Competing against representatives from the University of Bristol, the University of West of England and BPP, it was Graham’s first moot outside the classroom and, he says, he was ‘appropriately nervous.’
The case set for competitors involved an application for a Non-Molestation Order, and an Occupation Order under the Family Law Act 1996 – what was essentially a domestic abuse case. Here, Graham shares his experience of the day.
‘This area of law was totally unfamiliar to me,’ says Graham. ‘In the week leading up to the moot I benefitted hugely from the guidance of a barrister from a local set of Chambers who suggested avenues of inquiry and set me straight on the finer points of court etiquette!’
By the day of the moot, Graham realised he was well prepared for the challenge. He sees confidence and preparation as key components in his victory – making it essential to explore what you don’t know beforehand.
'I felt I knew my case well, and was able to engage with the questions that were put to me. The judges indicated that this engagement was a big factor in their decision, and if I have any advice to give to other mooters it would be to focus on the apparent weaknesses in your case when preparing, as your responses when these issues are raised will make or break your performance. Obvious perhaps, but important!
‘By the time my ten minutes were up I was happy with the way my submissions had gone. Still, I was wholly surprised when the judges announced I had won, as the standard of the competition was extremely high. I’m thrilled to have brought home the trophy, immensely grateful to PSU and everyone from The University of Law who supported me, and looking forward to making the most of my prize – a mini-pupillage at Guildhall Chambers!’
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