This month, we continue our series on communication and the media. Following our articles on “The Art of Strategic Communication”, and “Legal Profession & Working with the Media”, Julia Jensen from the law firm Eurojuris Aalborg in Denmark shares her experience with us.
Julia Jensen, the owner of Eurojuris Aalborg, practices in Criminal Law, Real Estate Law, Immigration Law, and Litigation. The law firm has specialists with working knowledge in English, Pусский, Nederlands, Français, Svenska, and Suomi. With her multi-lingual skills, Julia advises various foreign clients, focusing on international relations.
In 2017, Julia pleaded a number of high profiled cases attracting media attention. First, the case of a Somali refugee. Julia’s client was able to leave the status of “refugee” because of his high income as a worker in a factory. His income exceeded the required income limit, which tends to disqualify people without higher education. In short, he was able to apply for a work permission and residence despite lacking higher education.
“The case was the first of its kind. The Danish minister of integration, Inger Støjberg, meant to close the loophole in the system and went as far as changing the law.” Because of its human and political dimension, the case caught both public and political interest. Julia appeared in the media on a weekly basis, on the radio and in the newspapers. More will come as the case is still in progress.
Second, Julia had high profile criminal cases related to police violence. All cases dealt with complaints about police officers and professional conduct. One case is even subject of a documentary: “My client was a very sick young man, who somehow managed to take a police officer’s loaded gun. He shot himself in the head, twice, and survived.”
The case received considerable media attention causing heated public debates. Julia was part of a specialist panel on television discussing claims against police officers. With no interest in pleasing anybody, Julia’s clear voice and straightforwardness turned out to her advantage. “I had only this one case. But because of a pre-interview, they decided to have a go with me.”
Following her first appearances in the media, Julia has been contacted numerous times for interviews. “In Denmark, the rules related to the criminal cases and cases with refugees that I work on are changing fast and often.” And even though media relations were not one of her tasks, Julia plunged in when the media attention came as a surprise.
Prior to an interview, Julia receives the questions and a briefing. “They basically tell me to keep it short and simple.” In her interviews, Julia speaks frankly, with the voice of both a lawyer and a private person, “I have sympathy for my client’s situation – and that is reflected in my answers. I am not trying to sell my law firm or me by presenting all my legal knowledge. I prefer to communicate my client’s story, focusing on the case.”
Despite the controversy over her cases, she has never worried about being portrayed incorrectly. “Should I be worried? The media has been very loyal, and I have never been quoted wrong yet. Maybe because I represent the “little man” against the big system?”
Overall, Eurojuris Aalborg is benefiting from working with the media. “For one thing, the law firm gets very good press, which clients and potential clients seem to notice. On top of that, my cases receive the much-needed attention to help my clients who are stuck in the system. It is a win-win situation.”
Eurojuris Aalborg: eurojuris-aalborg.dk
Documentary ‘I politiets vold: Betjentens ord mod dit’: www.dr.dk/tv/se/moerkt-og-mistaenkt-dr2-dokumentar/-/i-politiets-vold-betjentens-ord-mod-dit