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This week in our MHC Life series, we speak to Michael Lagan from our Competition & Antitrust team. Michael talks us about how he got into Competition law and his favourite holiday destinations.​

Tell us a bit about you and your career journey to MHC – what inspired you to get into this career?

I had an excellent English and history teacher when I was in secondary school that my interest in these subjects. This motivated me to decide to study Law & Business in Trinity College Dublin. I enjoyed the law modules more and the experience of studying abroad on Erasmus in Madrid made me realise that I wanted a career in law with an international dimension. This was further confirmed when I completed my LL.M. in European Law in Leiden University, where I developed my keen interest in competition law during the completion of my master's thesis.

After passing the FE1 exams and graduating, I completed my training contract with a big law firm in Dublin. Competition law was by far my favourite practice area during my training and seemed to be a good fit for me. So, I chose to specialise in this area after I qualified.

Favourite thing about your role?

I very much enjoy my role as an associate on the competition team.

Everyone on the team is a pleasure to work with and I very much enjoy the varied nature of the legal work in this field. For example, I enjoy learning more about different industries in-depth when advising clients on merger control.

Further, competition law is a fascinating, constantly evolving body of law, so it is also great to be able assist clients with cutting-edge legal challenges such as those presented by the Digital Markets Act and the new Screening of Third Country Transactions Act.

The net result of this is that I am in the fortunate position to advise a wide range of clients on a broad range of pressing issues. All of this makes the role worthwhile, rewarding and very engaging to me.

Talk us through a typical day for you

Most days, I cycle to work after a light breakfast.

One of the great things about being a Competition and Antitrust Associate is the variety. This means that the projects and workstreams I am involved in change a lot from day to day, and week to week. That said, I most frequently assist with client queries to do with merger control, investment screening, and the Digital Markets Act. I tend to spend a significant chunk of time each day performing desktop research, chatting through queries with the team, and drafting email advice in relation to niche competition law-related queries. Our team also has weekly meetings which presents a good opportunity to catch up and run through what everyone is doing.

After lunch, when I have time, I enjoy going for a walk to get some fresh air, even when the weather is not the best!. I also like to do some form of exercise in the evening, such as, playing 5-a-side football, exercising in the gym or occasionally go bouldering.

What tv shows have you binge watched recently?

I very much enjoyed watching Succession. One of the best shows I have seen in a long while! In general, I enjoy watching thrillers and dark comedies.

One thing most people don't know about you?

I'm a fairly decent table tennis player and I have represented Munster in interprovincial tournaments.

What's your idea of a perfect holiday/favourite place you've ever visited?

I enjoy visiting places which are culturally very different to Ireland and to see as many different things as possible while on holiday. For example, I really enjoyed visiting Japan last summer. While there, I travelled on the bullet trains (and highly recommend getting a JR Pass!), starting in Fukuoka on Kyushu Island and travelling to Hiroshima, Kyoto, Osaka, Tokyo and Komatsu over a 10-day period.

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