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I lead the family law team at our Birmingham office. I specialise in all aspects of family law/separation including financial matters and cases concerning children.
I have particular experience in helping clients, and their families, who are in the police or work within the sporting world.
I am also a qualified collaborative lawyer and an experienced advocate.
A "leading individual" in family law within the West Midlands area - Legal 500
As a young child I was fascinated by courts, barristers and TV programmes about the law in general. After studying law at university I considered joining the police but soon realised working night shifts was not for me!
I enjoy being able to support people through challenging times. As a lawyer you have many opportunities to showcase all sides of your personality from the tough negotiator through to the sympathetic friend and confidante.
Irwin Mitchell enables me to offer a holistic service to all clients which is not just restricted to my subject area. The expertise within the firm also allows me to advise in greater detail on aspects of my cases involving businesses, trusts, complex property issues and so on.
I am a mother-of-three so understand the challenges of family life. I sit on the Board of Trustees of a local nursery and whenever possible, I try to find time to keep fit and enjoy time outdoors away from a desk. I enjoy travel and spending time at our little wooden chalet in the Austrian Alps.
“The divorce rates show that the average age of divorcees is continuing to rise partly because the attitudes of modern society towards divorce have become more relaxed in the past 10-20 years. Most divorcees are now in their 40s. People are recognising that they don’t have to stay in unhappy relationships and the number of dating websites and groups that are aimed at older people show that it is possible to build new relationships no matter what age you divorce.
“Having said that the stats show that once a marriage lasts 20 years, there is a much greater chance the couple will stay together. The first 10 years remain the most likely time that a divorce will occur.
“Long term, the statistics show that divorce rates generally are continuing to decline which may reflect the fact that more people are cohabiting first which could mean their relationships are stronger when they come to get married or they are simply choosing not to marry in the first place particularly if one or both parties have had a previous relationship and/or are wealthy in their own right.
“Same sex marriage was first legally allowed in 2014 so in the next batch of statistics for the years following this we may start to see same-sex divorce reported on for the first time.”
“A divorce is a challenging experience for all parties but when children are involved and their future is at stake then a resolution must be sought, however difficult this may be, as they should always be the priority.
“This appeared to be the case when Madonna and Guy Ritchie separated and agreed to joint custody of Rocco but her subsequent move to New York complicated the agreement and has led to claims and counter claims that cannot have helped a young man growing up in the media spotlight due to his parents’ fame.
“It is becoming more and more common in custody cases that one parent wishes, or is required to relocate, often thousands of miles away. The best case scenario is that parents will be able to agree what is best for their child, either directly, through mediation, collaborative law or negotiation using solicitors.
“This has not been the case here and it likely comes down to a breakdown in trust between the parents which can then cloud the bigger picture - the happiness of their son.
“Mr Justice MacDonald’s ruling suggests that an agreement may finally be reached, and whilst this is a positive step, the length of time it has taken and the media attention the case has received will not have been easy for Rocco.
“As the judge stated “this is a case born out of circumstances that arise for countless separated parents the world over” and this is why we work closely with Kids in the Middle to make sure children affected by either a separation or divorce are aware of the help and support which they can access.”
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