Frazer Hunt, a transport & insurance partner in the Sydney office of Mills Oakley, takes five to tell us about his strange encounter with the Mafia, and why he loves law.
What made you decide to become a lawyer?
My father was a successful barrister who was appointed to the Supreme Court of NSW on the same day that I started studying law. However, I found my own path in the law by focusing on the transport sector and specialising in marine insurance.
How long have you worked at Mills Oakley for and what brought you to that position?
I moved to Mills Oakley with my transport/insurance team in November 2014 as a result of the growing trend for insurers to consolidate their legal panels and give more work to a smaller number of panel firms. Joining a national team of talented specialised insurance experts across multiple lines of insurance was an easy decision.
What’s the strangest case you’ve ever worked on/been involved with?
I was in Sicily taking a statement from a skipper of a fishing vessel involved in the attempted salvage of a Greek tanker that had caught fire and sunk off the coast. After obtaining the “official” version of how much water had been used in the operation, I was then approached by the mafia who kindly offered to give me as much water as I needed, on terms to be negotiated. I returned to London on the next available flight!
If you could invite three people for dinner, dead or alive and excluding family and friends, who would they be and why?
The Dalai Lama, Paulo Coelho (author of The Alchemist) and Bill Bryson (travel writer). Many insights into life and laughter.
You’re based in Sydney – where’s the best place to go for a drink and/or dinner after work?
Fix St James in the CBD has good food and great wines. Egg Of The Universe (my local yoga studio and café in Rozelle) does a sensational brunch.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given (work or personal)?
Your reputation and your integrity are everything in this profession.
Do you have any hobbies/interests outside of work?
Yoga (which keeps me grounded), skiing (bring on Lawski 2015!), travel (daughters studying in Germany and England provide an excellent excuse) and music (I will go back to my guitar one day).
Complete this sentence: If I wasn’t a lawyer, I would be…
…re-inventing myself to be a coach/mentor to spend more time helping people realise their potential.
What do you think will be single biggest issue facing the legal space in Australia in 2015?
Remaining relevant to our clients as their needs and demands change.
What do you love about your job?
The variety of our work constantly challenges me to find solutions and present them in a way that makes it easy for the client. Seldom does a day pass without needing to research the law to find new solutions. Working in such positive environment at Mills Oakley is the icing on the cake.
What would you change about your job right now if you could?
Changing firms in 2014 was enough change for the time being!