Construction law a rich learning experience for Judge's Associate

Melbourne Law Masters student Rami Marginean’s passion for construction law was something he discovered by chance.

Melbourne Law Masters student Rami Marginean

Enrolling in construction law electives as part of his JD studies, Rami found the subject to be particularly rich, spanning  so many bodies of law – from contract and tort to envornment and planning law.

“I discovered that construction law is not at all how I thought it would be. Most notably, it is not niche at all – it’s a very broad field of law. You see every aspect of law within construction law.”

Now working as a Judge’s Associate in the Supreme Court of Victoria, Rami is successfully combining his career with further study in the Master of Construction Law.

“I love being  a student and learning from those who have a wealth of experience behind them,” he says.

“I would say that the construction law academics I have had the opportunity to study and work with are the most inspirational  - Professor John Sharkey, Mr Matthew Bell and Mr Wayne Jocic.”

Given the variety of issues that arise in this area of the law, Rami believes that practitioners of construction law must have both high-level theoretical and practical experience.

“The most distinguished practitioners and counsel who commonly appear before the Court consistently make invaluable contributions to academic discourse while also maintaining successful commercial relationships with their clients,” Rami says.

As part of his associateship at the Supreme Court, Rami is able to put some of his learnings into practice.

“I assist the Honourable Justice Vickery with research tasks and co-ordinate the activity of the Technology, Engineering and Construction (TEC) list.”

“The associateship is a unique opportunity to learn from the most experienced members of the legal profession, both in Court and in Chambers.”

Looking forward, Rami would like to experience private practice at the end of his associateship. However, he is adamant that he will always maintain a presence in academic circles.

“I use every opportunity I can to attend conferences and will continue to be involved in the university setting, in whatever form that might take.”

In an era where firms stress the importance of understanding the everyday concerns of the client, Rami says the opposite is also true: that practitioners should also have an in-depth academic understanding of their discipline.

“The good lawyer in the future is one which does more than work in a firm. They must understand how the law is being treated in the courts – and where it is going in the future.”

By Blake Connell

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