What The Experts Say

What The Experts Say

Our family law team is regularly ranked highly in leading independent guides to the legal profession. Find out what Chambers & Partners and the Legal 500 say about our expert team.

Chambers & Partners 2016

Chambers 2016 

Yorkshire

What We’re Known For: “Nationally recognised brand covering all aspects of family law for a range of clients. High net worth matrimonial finance remains a core focus, as does private children law including international relocation and adoption.” 

Our Strengths: "Without a doubt they are excellent; one of the top firms in the area."

Notable Practitioners: Sources describe Martin Loxley as "absolutely fantastic" as well as "nationally known, pragmatic, and a hard negotiator."

South West 

What We’re Known For: "A respected group, taking its place among the market leaders in the Bristol area after receiving impressive levels of market approval." 

Our Strengths: "I think they are a top-level outfit. They are very effective, they know the law and are very up-to-date."

Notable Practitioners: “Alison Hawes heads the team and enjoys an outstanding reputation in the family law space, most notably excelling in complex matrimonial finance matters.”

Manchester 

What We’re Known For: "Superb full-service family team supported by additional firm-wide strength in tax, real estate, trust planning and insolvency." 

Our Strengths: "They are prepared to take on cases that others might regard as unarguable and then win them. They are brave but with the appropriate measure of judgement."  

Notable Practitioners: “Ros Bever heads the Manchester family group and receives praise for her handling of child cases and complex financial matters.” She is "very experienced, personable, down to earth and a fighter."

Birmingham 

What We’re Known For: "Admired for its strong matrimonial finance practice, fielding expertise in areas such as wealth protection, ancillary relief and international assets."

Our Strengths: "They have all the expertise, really high-quality advice and are delightful to deal with – central London quality at regional prices."

Notable Practitioners: “Nicola Walker is noted for her expertise across all areas of family law, including litigation and alternative dispute resolution.” Sources describe her as “highly intelligent and highly focused,” highlighting her “strong and well-deserved reputation.”

London 

What We’re Known For: We’re recommended for our work in “complex financial matters, often involving jurisdictional, tax and trust issues.” 

Our Strengths: “They are extremely good, incredibly efficient, thorough and very professional.”

Notable Practitioners: “Elizabeth Hicks heads the firm’s London family team. Her practice includes matrimonial dissolution matters with international finance issues, and she is recommended for her ‘really clever, tactical’ and ‘very caring’ approach.”

Legal 500 2015

Legal 500 

North West

“Led by ‘incredible talent’ Ros Bever, the team at Irwin Mitchell ‘will go the extra mile for clients’ and has ‘achieved monumental success’, acting in a range of high profile disputes and complex money cases.”

Birmingham

“The well-regarded Nicola Walker is head of the team at Irwin Mitchell, assisted by Sarah Balfour, who is ‘one to watch for the future’.”

Yorkshire

“Irwin Mitchell’s team comprehensively covers the family sphere, with expertise in financial remedies and complex children cases, including high-net-worth schedule 1 matters.”

South West

“At Irwin Mitchell, Alison Hawes brings ‘a detailed and up-to-the-minute knowledge of law and procedure’ to multinational and complex VHNW ancillary relief claims.”

London

“Elizabeth Hicks was the lead partner in the Court of Appeal case Ahmed v Mustafa (2014). Hicks’ ‘expertise and drive rubs off on the team, which is outstanding’.”

Chambers & Partners 2015

Legal 500 Leading Firm 

North West

What We're Known For: Increasingly well reputed in the Manchester market for its capabilities across the gamut of family law issues, with the ability to handle complex international children's work. Commands respect in more niche areas of mediation and cohabitation agreements.

Our Strengths: "Very caring and detailed approach - literally 24/7 client care." and "An amazing team - I fear for anyone who goes up against them."

Notable Practitioners: Ros Bever is highly recommended for her responsiveness, with clients reporting that she is "available all day and night, in the UK and abroad." She specialises in medium to high net worth cases, often with international elements, and favours a collaborative approach. Our client enthuses: "She oozes empathy and her advice was spot on."

Legal 500 2014

Legal 500 Leading Firm 

North West

Irwin Mitchell’s team is ‘prepared to go the extra mile' and noted for its work for high-net-worth individuals, including cross-border divorce cases and complex children issues. Team head Ros Bever is ‘incredibly skilled and delivers excellent client care'.

West Midlands

Irwin Mitchell’s family law practice is ‘strong, professional and efficient', and acts for many professionals, such as doctors, dentists, accountants and solicitors. Nicola Walker is ‘an excellent negotiator with a good bedside manner'. The team’s experience includes matters at the intersection between personal injury and family law. 

London

The ‘excellent' team at Irwin Mitchell ‘always returns calls in a timely manner', and gives ‘professional and calm advice'. John Nicholson is ‘extremely knowledgeable in high-net-worth cases and complicated cases involving pre-nuptial agreements in various European countries'. Elizabeth Hicks also has a superb reputation for financial remedy cases. 

Yorkshire

Leeds - Irwin Mitchell’s team is led by Peter Morris. Ashlie Prescott also joined from Gosschalks. 

Sheffield - At Irwin Mitchell, team head Martin Loxley is ‘tactically astute and has first-rate knowledge'. A qualified arbitrator, Loxley leads on highly complex and valuable asset cases involving professionally sensitive and international elements.

South West

Irwin Mitchell is ‘excellent in terms of its strength and breadth of experience'. Alison Hawes is ‘second to none', combining ‘an excellent brain, a sharp eye for detail and a common humanity in her dealings with people'.

Chambers & Partners 2014

Chambers 2014 Leading Firm 

North West

What We’re Known For: Building a strong reputation for its family practice in the region. They regularly handle significant and complicated financial proceedings, prenuptial agreements and children matters, such as contact and residence issues. Continues to show expertise in handling the division of complex assets, and international implications.

Our Strengths:

Client service: "Their unwavering support both morally and professionally was their strongest point."

Efficiency: "Their strengths were their attention to detail, good humour and a total thoroughness."

Notable Practitioners

Ros Bever continues to be highly regarded in the region for her expertise in both complex financial matters and children's issues. She is highly praised by her clients, with one noting that "Ros Bever was outstanding: intelligent, diligent, willing to go beyond the call of duty - and thoroughly nice with it."

Midlands

What We’re Known For: Continues to have a presence in this region, dealing with a variety of complex family cases, including an increasing number of international disputes and unusual relationship breakdown and maintenance matters.

Our Strengths:

Pragmatic approach: "They strive to achieve a fair outcome for the client and the family, and to work together to reduce hostility and encourage an amicable and cost-effective solution in the best interests of the clients."

Bench strength: "Their particular strength is the depth in numbers of skilled and experienced solicitors who all work closely together and have a working knowledge of each other's cases so they are very good at supporting each other."

Notable Practitioners

Nicola Walker is collaboratively trained and specialises in particularly complicated family disputes, often involving additional medical or international issues. Her peers regard her as "a tough opponent when required but always good humoured and helpful."

London

What We're Known For: Advises on a range of high-value matrimonial finance disputes, prenuptial agreements and private children law matters. Noted for its capacity to assist on multi-jurisdictional cases, and matters involving investments and trusts.

Our Strengths:

Responsiveness: "Dedicated and extremely hard-working - you can get hold of the person you would like to speak with."

Client service: "Their client service is superb - they genuinely put me first and did everything within their power to make the process as easy as possible for me."

Notable Practitioners

Elizabeth Hicks is a leading figure for matrimonial finance and private children law matters. Sources praise her "extraordinary memory for every detail" and the fact that she "thinks outside the box."

According to sources, John Nicholson "has superb people skills - he can make clients feel relaxed and confident in his judgement." He specialises in matrimonial finance disputes, and is noted for his capacity to handle complex international cases.

Yorkshire

What We're Known For: Strong presence across the region, with a particular focus on complex, high net worth matrimonial finance cases, as well as handling private children law disputes. Frequently instructed on cases involving significant cross-border aspects.

Our Strengths:

Strategic Planning: "I would say their strongest points are their understanding of the law, the negotiation skills between the parties, and their commitment to the cause and resolution."

Measured approach: "I admired their calmness, experience, and that they were not capable of being bullied."

Notable Practitioners

Martin Loxley heads the national family department from the firm's Sheffield office. He is regularly instructed on complex, high-value cases, and he is also recognised for his skills as an arbitrator. Sources note that "he certainly knows his way around the family law scene."

Peter Morris heads the family law group in Leeds, and regularly handles high-value financial disputes, complex pensions issues, and children matters, included contested adoption.

South West

What We're Known For: Offers advice on high-value divorces and financial remedy cases, as well as a variety of children law issues. Also noted for its work with the firm's Court of Protection lawyers, offering advice on bespoke prenuptial or cohabitation agreements for brain-injured clients, as well as matrimonial finance matters.

Our Strengths:

Industry knowledge: "They are excellent at big-money cases - they understand business and finance."

Market standing: "They are recruiting and building up a very successful department."

Notable Practitioners

Alison Hawes handles significant high-value financial disputes, often further complicated by pensions and farming issues. One source notes her "warm, unhurried manner and gift for making complicated concepts sound simple." She often works alongside the firm's Court of Protection team to advise clients with brain injuries on matters concerning relationship breakdown.

Nicky Howarth has recently joined the team, and continues to draw widespread respect for her advice on complex financial proceedings, cohabitation disputes and prenuptial agreements.

0345 604 4911