Listening and patience, coupled with hard work, grit and a staggering intelligence, are what won this 27-year old legal entrepreneur the Partner of the Year Award at the recent African Legal Awards.
It is an affirmation that was completely unexpected, Joselynn says, mostly because she is fairly new in the game and still young. But, what the award recognised is how the legal world is in dramatic transition as lawyers grapple with the “new normal”. Fresh and inspiring ways of addressing old problems and the vibrant and innovative young minds finding solutions are what the judges were looking for.
Joselynn’s ability to absorb the frustrations of her clients and then understand how they can be resolved in the context of the broader traditional legal system is what has set her apart so early on in her career.
The motto of her firm, Fember Attorney’s Incorporated, is “Results. Not Hours”. Billable hours, she says, are inefficient, punitive and susceptible to abuse and do not serve the best interests of the client.
“Many clients get little or no satisfaction from traditional or and outdated systems of legal practice.
“To enable better access, the firm works to make legal information more available to the public and clients we serve,” she says.
Fember Attorney’s Incorporated’s structure was built around addressing client need with an organised and digitised system of “onboarding” that manages the expectations from the outset.
Joselynn's legal specialities are commercial, criminal and family law. She has assisted multinational companies, handled complex high-profile cases and has been invited to speak on several media platforms to advise on different aspects of the law, including criminal law, child law and business law.
In the interview she tells Africa Legal’s Tom Pearson a little of her own journey to becoming a lawyer as someone from a background hobbled by poverty and alcoholism.
She is the first in her family – including her extended family – to achieve a university degree (from the University of the Witwatersrand) which she funded through part-time work and applying for bursaries.
This is a landmark interview with one of Africa’s emerging legal minds. Joselynn reflects a way of thinking that is building across the continent where lawyers are tenacious, hungry and refuse to accept old ways of doing things.
It is a conversation that will put a spring in the step of all young African lawyers. Her message is clear: challenges are there to be faced head on, obstacles are there to be overcome and no boundary cannot be crossed.
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