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I am a solicitor in the Divorce and Family Law team based in Birmingham, specialising in a variety of family-related issues from straightforward divorce cases, to complex financial claims concerning business assets.
As well as resolving financial matters arising from a separation, I am regularly instructed to represent clients within the context of Children Act litigation, child abduction and claims concerning property trusts.
In addition to assisting Nicola Walker on her highly complex cases involving business assets, both in the UK and overseas, I have, as a registered lawyer with the Football Association, specialist expertise in cases involving professional footballers and have built up a niche practice advising families within the Asian community.
Dealing with the legal, emotional and practical consequences in the immediate aftermath of separation is very difficult. I believe strongly that the right advice at an early stage is crucial to minimising any emotional impact, whilst ensuring that the legal position of my client is preserved and advanced in a cost effective way.
I wanted to pursue a career which was, not only intellectually stimulating, but also rewarding. Family law has not failed me on both of these fronts.
I know it is a cliché, but for me the most rewarding part of the job is seeing my client at the end of the process, knowing that I have made a difference in possibly the most important aspect of life - family life.
Being surrounded by truly brilliant lawyers and people who genuinely care about their clients on a human level.
As a proud father, and uncle to many nieces and nephews, I am a typical family man and immensely enjoy spending my spare time with the children - though by the end of each weekend, you may find me in the allotment trying to grow a money tree and getting some sleep!
Aside from the kids and growing vegetables, I play non league football to a semi professional level and as this goes to press I have been offered a directorship on the board at my club. I am deeply passionate about using sport to provide a positive influence in the lives of young people.
Asian Today (The Value of a Nikah Nama in Divorce) - www.mhfamilylawblog.blogspot.co.uk
“There is an endemic failure to recognise mental health issues amongst footballers and the emptiness caused at the end of a career, which has a direct and indirect impact on family life.
“At a time when they need support from their partner they end up pushing them away and relationship worries then add to the strain felt after stopped doing the only thing they’ve known since they were teenagers.
“Yes, for many people being a footballer is a dream job but hundreds of professionals do not enjoy the money and fame that is associated with ‘the beautiful game’. Footballers from the lower leagues don’t earn enough money to support them once their career ends and therefore spend countless hours worrying about what to do when they retire and how they’ll continue to live the lifestyle they’re accustom too.
“Players are often advised to settle down and marry whilst they’re young so they’re away from the well-publicised distractions that can harm their career. But not enough is done to provide them with financial guidance and explain why prenuptials may help avoid some of the problems that could come later down the line.
“Unfortunately we’ve seen first-hand that often the first time a player speaks freely about their emotions and starts to get the support they need is in the first appointment with their divorce solicitor.
“Tony Cascarino’s words should not be ignored and it is worrying to hear his admission that “no wonder marriages fail at this point (after retirement), everything changes and the players feel lost and isolated”. Players may well become coaches and pundits but that may not make the transition any easier.
“Football is a unique industry. It is often assumed that splits are financially motivated and there is a distinct lack of empathy amongst the public when often a range of reasons are involved in the decision – ones that could have been prevented.
“Despite being modern day celebrities (whether they like it or not) we should not lose sight of that fact that these players have relationship challenges just like many of us do and the football clubs, the governing bodies and everyone with a vested interest in protecting footballers should work together to help prevent so many divorces taking place so soon after retirement.”