Get to Know Us | Jan Lilius, Specialist Partner, Restructuring & Insolvency
18 August 2020
You have just recently been appointed as a specialist partner. How did you first become a lawyer at Hannes Snellman?
"I started working at Hannes Snellman in 2005. I had worked in a few other law firms before joining and felt that it was time to seek new challenges from a large and international law firm. There has indeed not been any lack of challenges – in a positive manner! I guess that is the reason I have enjoyed my time at the firm for more than 15 years."
You work with insolvency and restructuring matters. Have you done any active career planning, or how have you ended up working with these areas?
"When I started my legal career as a trainee at small law firm in 1992, Finland was in the middle of its probably severest recession ever. That is why my work was very much bankruptcy-related. The basis and interest for insolvency work was born then.
There was a long time I did not work with insolvency matters that much, but when I moved to Hannes Snellman, the bankruptcy of Töölön Matkatoimisto (at the time the largest bankruptcy in Finland) started almost immediately. I was asked by Mr Antti Heikinheimo whether I would like to assist him in administering the bankruptcy estate. I have been fortunate to grow my special interest for insolvency-related work at Hannes Snellman ever since."
You head our insolvency practice in Helsinki. What kinds of leadership principles do you have piloting your team?
"I have always been a team player. I like to discuss complicated matters and share experience with my team members. I have learned that it is the best way to find the right solutions for our clients. I also like to give responsibility and counselling to the younger team members. I believe this is the most efficient way for the whole team to learn and understand complex insolvency matters."
What is the best part and what is the most challenging part about your work?
"I would say that the best part of my work is also the most challenging. I like to analyse complicated structures and situations and consider best ways for our clients to proceed."
Do you have time for any free-time activities?
"Absolutely! I enjoy doing sports (cycling, running, gym, and hockey), spending time outdoors, and life with my wife and dog. During winter time, you will regularly find me at Nordis (the home arena of the hockey team HIFK). During summer time, I try to spend as much time as possible at our summer cottage in Porvoo."