"From a relatively young age, I always wanted to become a lawyer. I loved watching re-runs of 'Perry Mason' as a kid."
For Jacquie Knowles, a childhood influenced by an iconic television show blossomed into a lifelong passion for practicing law. And, like any television show worth watching, Jacquie's story is one that's been nicely navigated. At the age of 18, Jacquie was living on her own and working toward an undergraduate degree in criminology from Carleton University. Without financial support from her family, Jacquie went to school on a part-time basis and waitressed in order to cover the cost of her courses. With student loans also unavailable to her, Jacquie needed to catch a break. Fortunately, one was just about to find her.
Halfway through her undergraduate degree, Jacquie met a group of lawyers who frequented the restaurant she worked in. They were looking to hire a new secretary/legal assistant and Jacquie implored them to give her a shot. Soon enough, Jacquie had the job and spent the next two and a half years working at the firm, while finishing her undergraduate degree. Here, she didn't just make money for school, she also earned valuable experience in the field of real estate law.
By 1987, Jacquie was accepted to the Osgoode Hall Law School. She'd go on to graduate in 1990, before being called to the Bar of Ontario in 1992.
"I started my law career working for a mid-sized downtown law firm in Toronto," recalls Jacquie. "Like everyone else in law school, I got caught up thinking that success meant a job on Bay Street instead of thinking about my original goals."
After experiencing dissatisfaction on Bay Street as a commercial litigator, Jacquie took a breath and re-evaluated what she wanted from her career. In 1993, real estate law would unexpectedly emerge as one of her primary disciplines.
"I never set out intentionally to practice real estate law, but as I started doing more and more of it, I realized that I enjoyed this area of practice more than anything else," offers Jacquie. "There wasn't a lot of arguing with other lawyers like there was on conducting litigation files. And, for the most part, it was "happy law," as I like to describe it. You get to meet a lot of lovely people doing happy things like buying a new home."
At JMK Law Barristers and Solicitors, Jacquie and her exceptionally experienced team set out to deliver personal service with professional experience. In addition to handling residential and commercial real estate transactions, the firm also works on wills and estates, powers of attorney, incorporating companies, preparing shareholder agreements, the purchase and sale of businesses, contractual preparation and interpretation, and much more.
"Clients can feel confident that their files will be expertly handled and that any issues will be resolved to their satisfaction," concludes Jacquie. "My team and I are here to make sure they have a great experience working with us."