We have wide experience of representing people in all matters relating to children, whether following separation or divorce or where social services have intervened.
Children and social services
Sometimes it is necessary for the state, through your local authority represented by a social worker, to become involved in the life of your child. We have a wealth of experience of representing parents, children and family members within such care proceedings.
Where care cases are concerned, we believe it’s important that you have the same lawyer representing you throughout the court process if at all possible. This is why we do most of the advocacy work ourselves.
Proceedings between parents – contact and residence
Where couples have separated, there may be a dispute about where the children should live and with whom (residence). There may also be disagreements about whom they should see, when and for how long (contact). Whenever we are instructed in this area, we always adopt a conciliatory and constructive approach, working closely with our clients. We recognize that this is a difficult stage in any separation and we try to reach agreement on as many issues as possible before court proceedings are commenced.
We can provide help and assistance in all aspects of adoption and have represented prospective adopters, foster carers and step parents in obtaining adoption orders.
Special Guardianship Orders
We have represented many family members who seek Special Guardianship Orders, and have also been instructed to do so by relevant local authorities. SGOs came into force on 30 December 2005 and their objective was to fill the gap between residence orders, long-term fostering and adoption by providing a long-term care option similar to adoption which allows children to maintain links with their birth families.
Children and financial support
You may find that you require assistance after a separation in order to obtain financial assistance for your child. We are able to advise you and to apply to the court for a lump sum and/or property adjustment order for the benefit of your child.
Jonathan Diamond is the partner leading the team and a High Court Solicitor-Advocate who is qualified to represent his clients as advocate in family and civil law proceedings in the Higher Courts. This used to be the preserve of barristers. A relatively small number of solicitors have obtained this prestigious qualification. This means that he can now appear in all courts including the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court and has the same rights of audience as a barrister practicing civil law.
If you would like to have the assistance of a family lawyer who can provide expert legal advice while keeping your costs to a minimum then click HERE for the information on what is called “Unbundled Legal Services.”
As legal aid for most types of disputes in family and matrimonial law disappeared on 1st April 2013, please click HERE for more information on the type of legal aid that may be available and click HERE for details of fixed fees for divorce and initial advice.”