“Continuous learning, adaptability, seeking mentorship, and maintaining integrity are the keys to building a successful and fulfilling legal career” From In-House Counsel to India’s Top Lawyer – Nitin Jain, Partner at Agama Law Associates

This interview has been published by Namrata Singh and The SuperLawyer Team

Nitin, we are extremely delighted to have you with us for this interview. Could you please introduce yourself and share the key milestones in your professional journey that led you to become a Partner at Agama Law Associates?

Corporate law firms are a testament to the spirit of finding lateral solutions. Being one of the partners managing an established yet ever-expanding corporate law practice, I embrace business agility and dynamism. And I think, serendipitously, every milestone in my professional journey set me up for it. 

Even before ALA, I have seen legal problems not just through the lens of arguing notable cases, but also through strategic contributions, ultimately culminating in my current role. I was fortunate to wear both hats. It helps to see legal issues from 360 degrees which my role in the house lent itself to Day-to-day contractual and compliance issues, transactions as well as disputes going hand-in-hand at all times leaves very little to be overwhelmed with. Corporate systems are the added icing on cake, demonstrating how everything can be tackled so long as there are systems. On the other hand, being a practitioner I had a front row view to the action in court, the understanding of procedures, the art of drafting was absorbed from the best – the solicitor chambers. Everything has been imperative to now being capacitated to work out client solutions that are not half-baked or with gaps on the practical perspectives.     

Your professional journey includes senior management positions in various industries, blending in-house and external legal counsel roles. How has this diverse experience shaped your approach to handling commercial disputes, compliance, and regulatory matters at Agama Law Associates?

A lot of business has to do with expectation management, and there’s nothing better than watching the interplay of multiple sectors as one from within them, to understand various concerns. My journey as In-house Counsel working with logistics, automobiles, chemicals and nutraceutical industries has provided me with a holistic understanding of varied business dynamics. This, coupled with my legal expertise, enables me to approach commercial disputes, compliance, and regulatory matters at Agama Law Associates with a strategic and business-oriented mindset. I strive to align legal strategies with overarching business goals, fostering effective resolution.

What can readers learn from your extensive experience navigating the international arbitration domain?

Certainly, one standout moment was successfully representing a client in a high-stakes international arbitration. Navigating intricate cross-border legal nuances and securing a favorable outcome not only showcased the depth of my expertise but underscored the importance of meticulous preparation and a strategic approach in the realm of international arbitration and specially when we have not only got a favourable result for our clients but made a win -win for both parties, which made a memorable moment.

Beyond your legal prowess, you’ve been acknowledged as India’s Super 50 Lawyer by Asian Legal Business and listed in the 100 Top Lawyer A-List by India Business Law Journal. How do you stay grounded amidst such accolades, and what role do these recognitions play in your professional journey?

I remain cognizant of the fact that accolades are a reflection of collective efforts of the entire team and not of an individual. These recognitions also serve as reminders to stay committed to excellence and continuous learning. They reinforce the responsibility to uphold high standards in the legal profession and inspire me to contribute to the legal community at large with fostering a positive impact on clients.

In your role at Agama Law Associates, you focus on developing legal strategies for corporate clients’ new ventures and acquisitions. How do you strike a balance between legal diligence and fostering business growth, especially in the context of complex corporate disputes?

With Agama’s varied sector experience and having seen challenges for mid-size legal entities to large corporate’s, have a repository of the issues faced by the clients and providing them timely legal strategy and solutions, by anticipating their challenges I actively collaborate with stakeholders, aligning legal strategies with business objectives. This synergy ensures that corporate disputes are addressed strategically, promoting not only legal resilience but also contributing to the overall success and sustainable growth of our clients’ businesses.

Your involvement as a speaker and author reflects your commitment to thought leadership. What drives you to share your insights, and how do you think such knowledge-sharing events contribute to the legal community’s growth?

I’m driven to share insights because knowledge-sharing is integral to professional growth. By participating in speaking engagements and authoring content, I contribute to the collective wisdom of the legal community. These exchanges foster a culture of continuous learning, enabling practitioners to stay abreast of industry trends, best practices, and innovative approaches. Ultimately, such knowledge-sharing events serve as catalysts for the legal community’s growth, nurturing a dynamic and informed professional landscape.

You’ve successfully handled cross-border disputes, insolvency restructuring, and business regulatory advisory. Can you share a challenging situation you’ve encountered in your career and the key strategies you employed to navigate it successfully?

Cross-border disputes are challenging because of the web of regulatory intricacies – regulation is a fluid beast to foresee and plan for and when it involves international angles, it also weaves in inconsistencies between the approaches of the regulators of all jurisdictions involved. The only strategy that stands a chance is one which considers as many variables as is possible to imagine.  The starting point is always  a comprehensive risk assessment. And the fulcrum that drives the process forward to fruition is to engage in, and maintain, proactive communication with all stakeholders. Collaborating with international legal experts, we crafted a tailored resolution approach that factored in both legal and business considerations. This integrated strategy proved effective, leading to a successful resolution while minimizing potential regulatory hurdles and preserving the client’s business interests.

Away from the legal arena, what are some of your personal hobbies or interests that provide a break from the complexities of your professional life? How do you unwind and recharge outside of work?

Outside of work, I find solace in reading, particularly exploring diverse genres to broaden my perspective. Recently finished reading Atomic Habits by James Clear and How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. Engaging in outdoor activities, whether it’s hiking or simply spending time in nature, helps me unwind and recharge. 

Considering your extensive experience, what advice would you give to young legal professionals entering the industry today, especially those aspiring to build expertise in commercial disputes resolution and international arbitration?

For young legal professionals entering the industry, my advice would be to cultivate a robust foundation in legal fundamentals while actively seeking diverse experiences. Patience and perseverance should be their Mantra, since there is no shortcut to success. Embrace continuous learning, stay abreast of industry and legal developments. Building expertise in commercial disputes resolution and international arbitration requires a combination of legal acumen covering various laws and a deep understanding of business dynamics. Actively seek mentorship and be adaptable to change. Lastly, maintain integrity, as it is the bedrock of a successful and fulfilling legal career.

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