Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
Click here for more details

United Kingdom > East Anglia > Private client > Family > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Index of tables

  1. Family
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next Generation Partners
  5. Rising stars

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1

Birketts LLP is well known for its mediation, collaborative law, arbitration and litigation expertise in family law matters for high-net-worth clients in East Anglia and beyond. Ipswich-based practice head Oliver Gravell saw the practice in Norwich grow with the hire of associates Lisa Cornish and Denise Findlay from Hansells. Newly promoted partner Katie Beaven in Norwich is best-known for complex and high-net-worth financial settlements and Children Act matters. Senior associates Roopa Ahluwalia  and Elisabeth Sneade are the key contacts in Cambridge.

Practice head(s):Oliver Gravell

Other key lawyers:Katie Beaven; Lisa Cornish; Roopa Ahluwalia; Elisabeth Sneade; Deborah Lloyd; Denise Findlay; Ginny Colman


'Very professional. I was represented by Lisa Cornish who is calm and knowledgeable. My ex-husband's solicitor was very unprofessional and Lisa remained cool at all times.'

Work highlights

  • Dealing with assets in excess of £2m and a complicated family trust structure whereby trustees were eventually made third-party interveners.
  • Acting for a partner with Ernst and Young.
  • Advising wife where assets were principally in her name in trust format.
  • Advising husband in financial dispute where there were unvested share options and total assets of approximately £1.5m.
  • Client came from using Russell Cooke and was unhappy that the millionaire's defence had been used within a Schedule 1 Children Act claim.

Staffed entirely by partners, Cambridge Family Law Practice is not only a leading firm in the Cambridge area, but also has a busy caseload for clients across East Anglia, London and beyond. It frequently handles high-value cross-border matters. The firm now has six partners with the recruitment of Jeremy Ford from Setfords Solicitors to join leading lights Simon Bethel, Gail Marchant-Daisley, Sue Varty, Tricia Ashton and Adam Moghadas. Ford has specific expertise in surrogacy law, child abduction and the medical treatment of children disputes, and often appears in the High Court.

Other key lawyers:Simon Bethel; Tricia Ashton; Gail Marchant-Daisley; Sue Varty; Adam Moghadas; Jeremy Ford

Work highlights

  • Representing the father in complex Children Act proceedings involving issues of parental alienation of three children aged 12, 10 and 6, where the two elder children have not had contact at all for almost a year, and contact with the six year old recently resumed following a successful interim application before a Circuit Judge.
  • Representing the husband in a multiplicity of proceedings, involving loss of resources and children proceedings.

Mills & Reeve LLP advises on the full range of family law issues from cross-border finances matters involving business assets and trusts to complex children cases. It has the largest practice in the region and frequently acts for high-net-worth individuals locally, nationally and internationally. Practice heads Caitlin Jenkins in Cambridge, Nick Stone in Norwich and consultant Roger Bamber call on the firm's leading agriculture, private tax, employment, conveyancing and corporate teams to provide a holistic service in complex cases.

Practice head(s):Caitlin Jenkins; Nick Stone; Roger Bamber

Other key lawyers:George Sprague; Frances Bailey; Rachel Brand


'The Cambridge family team are unrivalled in terms of client management, preparation and detail. They have practitioners who have expertise in all areas of financial remedies and are able to give clients excellent advice and representation from initial consultation to final resolution. Their advice is grounded on excellent legal knowledge and thorough grasp of the facts. It is given in a client friendly but firm manner.'

'A full breadth service in complex children cases with a focus on a solution orientated approach.'

'Caitlin Jenkins is a leader in her field with unrivalled knowledge and expertise.'

'George Sprague gives clear and focused advice; he has a wonderful client manner. A question of when, not if, for partnership.'

'Frances Bailey is a very detail orientated lawyer.'

'Ania Tarasiewicz has a fantastic grasp of law, facts and what makes her clients tick.'

'Hannah Wilson is a very clear thinker with an eye throughout on achieving, and making workable the solution to the problem desired by the client. Gives difficult advise with ease and provides unrivalled support to clients whilst maintaining the utmost professionalism.'

'The whole team is very helpful, kind and supportive.'

'The attention to detail in very complex cases is impressive.'

Sensible, practical advice is given kindly - good communication skills, particularly when communicating with hostile and difficult personality types.'

'Hannah Wilson is calm, kind, efficient and very sensible but also understands when her client might be finding things hard and has a lovely way with people.'

'Ania Tarasiewicz is a walking encyclopaedia on complex cases. Also very calm, kind, efficient and supportive.'

'Nick Stone and Frances Bailey are clear, ambitious, realistic and calm.'

'The Cambridge family team are unrivalled in terms of client management, preparation and detail.  They have practitioners who have expertise in all areas of financial remedies and are able to give clients excellent advice and representation from initial consultation to final resolution.  Their advice is grounded on excellent legal knowledge and thorough grasp of the facts.  It is given in a client friendly but firm manner'.

'Caitlin Jenkins (Cambridge) - a leader in her field with unrivalled knowledge and expertise. George Sprague (Cambridge) - George gives clear and focused advice; he has a wonderful client manner.  A question of when, not if, for partnership. Frances Bailey (Norwich) - a very detail orientated lawyer Ania Tarasiewicz (Cambridge) - fantastic grasp of law, facts and what makes her clients tick'.

Work highlights

  • Nick Stone acted for the wife to be in the negotiation and drafting of a pre-nuptial agreement in a case where the parties’ combined assets were c. £20m.
  • Acting for a husband in a High Court financial remedy case with substantial property portfolios and several businesses, and significant income, plus pensions and a family trust.
  • Acting in a case involving a senior executive in a global company with issues around multiple properties, complex income, and pension issues.
  • Acting for a husband, a founder of a listed company, on a financial settlement with complex trust structures and significant assets overseas.

Taylor Vinters is 'one of the top firms for family work and is increasingly making its presence felt in London, too', according to one client. Practice head Jackie Wells has 'massive experience of heavyweight family litigation and is more than capable of going up against any of the London Magic Circle firms'. The 'bright and able' Alexandra Gooden is also recommended. The firm acts regionally, nationally and internationally for entrepreneurs, family business owners, landed estate owners, City professionals and other high-net-worth individuals in the full range of high-value and complex family law matters.

Practice head(s):Jackie Wells

Other key lawyers:Alexandra Gooden; Rachel Bevan


'An experienced and friendly team with great client care skills and commitment to securing the best outcome for their clients.'

'Jackie Wells brings a depth of experience combined with outstanding client care skills.'

'Alexandra Gooden is excellent. I have recommended her to friends on many occasions and would not hesitate to do so again.'

Work highlights

  • High-profile divorce for clients based in London who retained business interests in Cambridge and the US.
  • Acting for wife in case involving her family company which is AIM listed, and complex arguments around provenance and a disputed inheritance. Case based in rural Lincolnshire and includes a substantial estate and assets in France.
  • Owner-manager divorce with arguments around post-separation accrual and assets worth circa £15-£20m.
  • Representing the wife in a high-profile divorce in marriage of long standing, involving assets in Cambridge, London and France.
  • Acting for a wife who had discovered documents suggesting that her husband was planning to divorce in his native New Zealand and that he had moved assets in anticipation of doing so.

Ashtons Legal has significant expertise in advising clients with very substantial assets and significant land and trust assets on family law matters, for which it is regarded as one of the best in East Anglia. Practice head Stephen Williams in Ipswich frequently handles family law matters with an international element for high-net-worth individuals, particularly those in the agricultural sector. Mary Pearce in Bury St Edmunds specialises in the financial aspects of breakdowns of marriages or cohabitation arrangements. Francesca Easter is also recommended.

Practice head(s):Stephen Williams

Other key lawyers:Mary Pearce; Francesca Easter


'Responsive, understanding and practical.'

'This team is very professional, helpful and polite. They work well together. Communication between myself and the solicitor was excellent and I was regularly updated. If the solicitor was on leave then the secretary would update me. The atmosphere was good and staff seemed happy. At any level, they were all professional. They are knowledgeable.'

'They are probably the market leaders in the area with considerable experience in the field and knowledge of how to put together a team with the expertise to deal with any case.'

'Stephen Williams is practical and understanding; he has sound legal knowledge, is good with clients and manages the team well.'

'Stephen Williams is exceptional with clients; clear, sensible and robust.'

Buckles Solicitors LLP has two greatly respected partners in Lyn Brisley and 30-year veteran Roger Gurney. The firm has extensive experience in dealing with complex financial issues including trusts, international matters, agricultural assets and high-value business interests. It handles a busy caseload of divorce, civil partnerships, pre-nuptial agreements, financial provision, children matters, injunctions and TOLATA. In 2018, the firm launched a new local Family Mediation Service, involving a network of independent financial advisers, valuers, divorce coaches, therapists and counsellors.

Practice head(s):Lyn Brisley

Other key lawyers:Roger Gurney; Helen Saggers


'The practice provides good attention to detail, good value and fantastic support for their clients.'

'Roger Gurney is first-rate at financial remedy family cases. He has great judgement and fights his client's cases with real determination.'

Butcher Andrews has a strong following in North Norfolk and continues to extend its reach further into East Anglia. Practice head Adney Payne, who is one of the most highly respected family lawyers in Norfolk, and key partner Julia Buckingham are both collaboratively trained, and Buckingham's background as a property lawyer gives her added insight into complex cohabitation disputes. They are supported by experienced litigation executive Jean Curtis who has specialist expertise in Children Act cases.

Practice head(s):Adney Payne

Other key lawyers:Jean Curtis; Julia Buckingham; Ava Bazley

Gotelee Solicitors has one of the leading family law practices in Suffolk and lead partner Helen Stuart is highly regarded for her advice to high-net-worth individuals on divorce, separation and other family law matters. In 2018, the firm recruited solicitor and Resolution member Juliet Gordon from Jackaman Smith & Mulley as part of an ongoing investment to grow the capacity of the practice. Legal executive Samantha Markham is recommended for her collaborative approach to family disputes.

Practice head(s):Helen Stuart

Other key lawyers:Juliet Gordon; Samantha Markham


'Gotelee offers a very personal service.  Everyone I dealt with was up-to-date on my case, approachable and understanding.'

'Samantha Markham provided clear and concise advice and was friendly, understanding and professional throughout the divorce process.'

Greene & Greene is 'a classy outfit that provides a level of service and legal vigour that can stand up against any firms in East Anglia and many in London'. 'There is nobody I would trust more', says a client of managing partner and head of family law Stuart Hughes. Associate Melanie Pilmer is a rising star. Both work closely with the firm's corporate and private client practices to provide a holistic service that encompasses financial and property matters, including asset protection in pre- and post-nuptial agreements.

Practice head(s):Stuart Hughes

Other key lawyers:Melanie Pilmer


'Firstly, the team is approachable and that compares favourably to other firms. However, they are also extremely knowledgeable, having a wide array of experiences in assisting other clients and within wider case law.'

'It is the "go-to" firm, as I know I can trust them to look after my clients' interests and provide a service that goes above and beyond.'

'Stuart Hughes is a standout individual. His approach to clients in what are clearly very testing times is outstanding.'

'This is a specialised and boutique department. Stuart Hughes is fearless and aggressive in the pursuit of the right outcome for his clients. Nothing and no-one scares him and he will interrogate information assiduously to find any hidden nuggets to help the case.'

'Melanie Pilmer is an experienced and user-friendly lawyer who undertakes in and out of court resolutions. Kind with clients, unflappable and never afraid to run a decent point, she is unfailingly polite but determined.'

'Melanie Pilmer has impressed us with her attention to detail, responsiveness and excellent cross-border knowledge and experience.'

'Stuart Hughes and Melanie Pilmer are both a pleasure to deal with professionally.'

"Stuart Hughes is a very good tactician. He fights very hard for his clients, yet is objective and able to take a detached view. He is an excellent team player with counsel, and a pleasure to work with.'

'The team has the strength of several layers of experience, headed by Stuart Hughes who has a wealth of experience in family cases, both as a traditional lawyer and as a mediator. With this level of skill set and experience it allows the team to adapt to the needs of the client – which is where they stand out from other firms.'

'Stuart Hughes has the incredible ability to retain the most complex and dense financial facts and arrangements for the duration of the case.'

Work highlights

  • Advised and prepared a complex £16m pre-nuptial agreement.
  • Acting for the applicant in a case where there were serious cross-allegations involving domestic abuse, neglect, alcoholism and violence.
  • Advising where the parties asserted beneficial interests in property located in the UK and France.
  • Advising on a collaborative basis in respect of divorce involving UK and overseas assets, including trust assets, of over £3m.
  • Successful application for a prohibited steps order to prevent children’s move and change in schools.

Hunt & Coombs LLP has a seven-lawyer family law practice based in Peterborough that also provides services to clients through the firm's St Neots, Huntingdon and Oundle offices. Practice head Farhana Butt and vastly experienced consultants Denis White and Edward Owen are strong advocates who handle complex and high-value cases. Butt is also well known as a family mediator. The firm excels in both public and private law matters. Senior solicitor Louise Ballantyne is a rising star.

Practice head(s):Farhana Butt

Other key lawyers:Edward Owen; Denis White; Louise Ballantyne; Sophie Scotcher; Giuseppe Pingerna


'A highly efficient and supportive team offering excellent care and guidance to clients, always with a view to sensible, realistic and good results.'

'Farhana Butt and Sophie Scotcher are impressively effective, great at understanding the needs of client's case and able to implement steps to a good result with great efficiency.'

'This is a busy high street practice with decades of experience in all aspects of family law. They have a detailed local knowledge and are well known in the local legal community as active and responsible professionals.'

'Farhana Butt has a long-standing and detailed knowledge of local issues. She has experience in all aspects of family law. She is not afraid to fight for her client's aims and objectives and is user-friendly.'

'Sophie Scotcher is organised and empathetic with a good legal knowledge. She presents beyond her years of experience and thinks outside of the box to get things done.'

'Farhana Butt is modernising and revitalising a long-established family law team, and working hard to build and grow a strong team around her.'

'Farhana Butt commands great loyalty with her client base, and applies a mixture of hard work and robust common sense to everything she does.'

'Sophie Scotcher is diligent, efficient, well-organised and unflappable and quickly establishing herself as an indispensable part of the team.'

'Denis White and Edward Owen are often the first choice "go-to" people if there is an urgent family case at court and a party needs a lawyer urgently. Both are very experienced and ideal for this type of case because of their calm and measured approach. Louise is particularly good on her feet.'

'An excellent firm with a very good reputation and it is always well received by other lawyers when they are involved in a case.'

'Always an organised sensible approach to advice, case preparation and representation', says counsel of the family law practice as Kerseys Solicitors LLP in Ipswich. The firm stands out for its expertise in public and private law children matters, as well as its expertise in financial aspects of divorce including business assets, farms and pensions. Practice head Clare Thomas, partner Elaine Webb and consultant and mediator Rosemary Carter are highly recommended. Victoria Cole is a rising star.

Practice head(s):Clare Thomas

Other key lawyers:Elaine Webb; Victoria Cole; Rosemary Carter


'The team was very prompt in dealing with all my requests throughout the process, keeping me up-to-date from start to finish. They were professional at all times and made me feel a priority.'

'Victoria Cole was my main contact and was an absolute professional at all times. She was helpful, responsive and very informative about a range of issues I faced.'

'Victoria Cole offered a personal feel to the meetings I attended and explained any advice she offered both in legal terms as well as laymen terms for me. I have recommended Victoria and Kerseys to a number of others who have also given positive feedback about their experience.'

The 'kind, helpful, cooperative and very reliable' Amanda Owens in Norwich leads the practice at Steeles Law, in which associate Emma Alfieri in Diss plays a key role. The small practice handles high-value and complex family cases and is highly regarded among referrers in Suffolk and Norfolk, most notably in Children Act and financial remedy cases.

Practice head(s):Amanda Owens

Other key lawyers:Emma Alfieri


'A very efficient practice. A very friendly office. Staff are always polite in person or when receiving calls.'

'Emma Alfieri is a very pleasant, approachable person. She is extremely efficient, very helpful and I felt I could trust her to look after my interests, which she did.'

'The team is amazing. Amanda Owens who has been my solicitor for three years, as always has been so supportive friendly and helpful.'

Nationally, Vardags is regarded as a leading matrimonial and family law firm specialising in high-net-worth and complex cases, often with an international element. The Cambridge office opened in 2016.

Work highlights

  • Represented the claimant in respect of her £1.7m claim under the Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act 1996.

Woolley & Co, Solicitors is a nationwide family law firm that has 23 partners, four of whom operate from East Anglia. Tamara Glanvill and Abby Smith in St Neots, Nick Wiseman in Great Yarmouth and Karen Agnew-Griffith in Thetford are all 'engaging and self-motivating individuals with a lot of experience'. They handle complex cases involving leave to remove, difficult child arrangements cases, cross-border divorce, and multimillion-pound financial disputes. Their clients include include expats, high-net-worth individuals, farming families, business owners and company directors.

Other key lawyers:Tamara Glanvill; Karen Agnew-Griffith; Nick Wiseman; Abby Smith


'Karen Agnew Griffith was superb from the initial phone call. She is a "no nonsense" person who explained everything very clearly indeed and without any waffle you get from many others.'

'All the way through the process, Karen Agnew Griffith was exceptional, whilst also keeping costs down with direct responses and advice only when really needed, unlike competitors.'

'Woolley and Co has a very good online presence which means that they are often a first port of call for legal services, despite not having a substantial office building in towns and cities across the country.'

'Tamara Glanvill is an excellent solicitor – she has an eye for detail and a soothing manner when crossing troubled waters with her clients.'

'A large team offering a collaborative approach on a national basis.'

'Karen Agnew-Griffith is a pragmatic and robust family litigator who is always on top of her cases.'

'I think one of the key strengths that makes them unique is that I felt that the solicitor working on my behalf always seemed available for me and responded very quickly to any issues that arose during my case.'

'From the first meeting I felt I was in safe hands at last.'

'Karen Agnew-Griffith was very honest and direct and it felt finally that someone was taking charge of the situation and she could see that I was a good father and deserved to have shared care of my children.'

'Karen Agnew-Griffith was very clear in what information she wanted from me and advised me throughout, I finally felt that someone believed that I deserved to be in my children's life. Throughout the case it always felt that I was her only client and she was always there for me and responded to any queries I had almost immediately.'

'Tamara Glanvill is very competent, polite and charming – a totally dependable and trustworthy solicitor.'

'Tamara Glanvill is very knowledgeable, skilled and empathetic towards her clients. I would not hesitate to recommend her.'

Work highlights

  • Tamara Glanvill handled a complex leave to remove application involving a blended family.
  • Karen Agnew-Griffith handled a complex cross-border divorce, child arrangements for a child with special needs, and a financial settlement.
  • Tamara Glanvill acted for an English client living in the USA, working in India and with assets in the Far East.
  • Abby Smith handled hostile Children Act proceedings, divorce and financial proceedings.
  • Nick Wiseman handled a section 37 contested Children Act case.

Clapham & Collinge Solicitors is 'a well established regional firm where client care is at the top of the agenda and it provides an extremely empathetic and dedicated service to its clients'. Practice head Neale Grearson 'clearly is highly regarded by top barristers and colleagues in the profession'. The firm advises on divorce and separation, financial relief, children issues, property rights for unmarried couples, cohabitation agreements, separation agreements and pre- and post-nuptial agreements.

Practice head(s):Neale Grearson

Other key lawyers:Caroline Eaton; Emerald Priscott


'This is a team that works well together: everyone's contribution is valued and there is a real sense of mutual respect, trust and a commitment to getting good outcomes for clients.'

'They are, rightly, proud of their achievements. They are unfailingly helpful and friendly when approached.'

'I am always impressed by their commitment to achieving settlements without going to court whenever possible.'

Fosters in Norwich deals with divorce and ancillary relief matters, private law children matters, domestic violence applications and public law children matters. Practice head Lucy Simpson acts for high-net-worth individuals, which in 2018 included clients with assets of up to £5m with business interests and significant overseas assets. Partner Clare Sharpe frequently represents parents in private and public law children matters including those with an international element and complex cases of substantial or conflicting medical evidence.

Practice head(s):Lucy Simpson

Other key lawyers:Clare Sharpe


'I am impressed by how closely the staff work together; phone calls and messages are passed on effectively and any promised return calls or emails are always honoured promptly.'

'The environment is professional whilst remaining welcoming. I have always felt looked after and valued, an aspect that I've found absent in other firms.'

'Lucy Simpson has been excellent in managing my case. I feel like we have received exceptional service from Lucy. I have found her to be highly knowledgeable, thorough with an enviable attention to detail, caring and kind whilst remaining factual and honest at all times.'

Work highlights

  • Representing an applicant wife in a complex high-value divorce where the husband had been diagnosed with terminal lung and brain tumours.  The matter involved a significant portfolio, overseas assets and two limited companies and required an unusual level of sensitivity in view of the issues involved.
  • Representing a mother in a highly complex private law children matter involving allegations of parental alienation and a fabricated illness.
  • Representing the children through their Rule 16.4 guardian in a complex private law children matter where the mother is actively alienating the children, one of whom has significant special needs.
  • Representing a disabled child in an application for discharge of a care order and an application for special guardianship in favour of his foster carers.
  • Representing a respondent mother in care proceedings in a complex case involving non-accidental injury to baby daughter.

The family practice at Fraser Dawbarns excels in complex financial matters thanks to the extensive knowledge of practice head Deborah Allen, who is 'well liked and respected, which has given the family team coherence and good morale'. Senior associate Rebecca Woodley, who is 'passionate about getting a good result for her clients, for whom she works tirelessly', handles financial matters and has a wealth of experience in complex children matters. Jackie Jessiman joined the Ely office from Woodfines LLP.

Practice head(s):Deborah Allen

Other key lawyers:Rebecca Woodley; Jackie Jessiman


'A solid department with a wealth of experience and expertise.'

'Deborah Allen is an experienced and able solicitor with a practical and determined approach to all her cases.'

'Rebecca Woodley is thorough and meticulous in her approach, yet sensitive and compassionate when dealing with clients.'

Work highlights

  • Representing husband in the preparation of post-nuptial agreement to protect inherited assets worth £6m including a farm and other business interests.
  • Representing the wife in a complex £9m divorce involving multiple properties both at home and abroad, family trusts and several large companies.
  • Representing the wife in divorce proceedings in which contributions and needs of both client and disabled child were key. Negotiations were lengthy but the matter was successfully agreed.
  • Representing the wife in divorce proceedings in which inheritance had been 'muddled' with marital assets but the client sought to preserve the inheritance. Pension provision was significant with a value of £900,000, with the respondent refusing to make relevant enquiries of the pension provider, making a court application necessary. Settlement was successfully negotiated in the wife’s favour.
  • Children Act proceedings involving a child with a world-class go-karting career and a dispute between the parents as to how his time should be allocated.

The family law practice at Howes Percival LLP is part of an integrated private client group that works across its offices in Cambridge, Leicester, Milton Keynes, Northampton and Norwich. Working closely with the estates and private client team, it focuses on wealth preservation where clients have business and land assets and other inherited wealth. Lead partner Amy Walpole and associate Sophie Key frequently handle divorce, financial negotiations, pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements, cohabitation issues and Children Act matters for high-net-worth individuals.

Practice head(s):Amy Walpole

Other key lawyers:Sophie Key; Laura Clay-Harris


'The team is approachable and responsive.'

'Amy Walpole and Laura Clay-Harris are both strong in communication and respond to emails promptly.'

'Approachable, determined and knowledgeable, they want to achieve best possible outcomes.'

'Amy Walpole's standout quality was her determination to achieve a fair result for her client even when difficult problems were obstructing progress. She persisted even when I felt like giving in to demands made by the other side. She gave me the confidence to carry on and achieve a good outcome.'

Prettys Solicitors LLP has outstanding practitioners in practice head and mediator Georgina Rayment and collaboratively trained head of private client Georgie Hall. Rayment has 20 years' experience at the firm and advises on all issues including divorce, financial resolution, children disputes, cohabitation agreements, pre-marital agreements and financial resolution. Hall is known for her excellent client care in matters relating to finances, children, and pre- or post-marriage asset division. Senior associate Matthew Clemence and associate Victoria Mayhew are also recommended.

Practice head(s):Georgina Rayment

Other key lawyers:Georgie Hall; Matthew Clemence; Victoria Mayhew

The matrimonial law practice at Rogers and Norton comprises one partner, one solicitor and one trainee, who handle both litigation and family mediation. Practice head Kerry Rowell in Norwich has a strong following across Norfolk and is particularly skilled in private law children and financial enforcement matters. Solicitor Averil Ballam in Attleborough is also recommended.

Practice head(s):Kerry Rowell

Other key lawyers:Averil Ballam

Work highlights

  • Successfully defended a father for the second time facing allegations of sexual abuse in a case where the mother is exercising coercive control of the children and parental alienation.
  • Successfully sought the return of a child who had been removed by the mother from the father’s care through court advocacy persuading the court that the child was at risk of harm in the care of the mother who had recently been intoxicated and sexually assaulted whilst caring for the child.
  • Negotiating at court a settlement in respect of an autistic child whose father was seeking to remove her temporarily from the jurisdiction to a Non-Hague Convention country outside of the EU.
  • Advising on financial settlement with pension valued over £2m and issue of needs for periodical payments from husband’s substantial income and business interests.
  • Advising on a separation agreement involving Sharia law.

'To use a sporting analogy, the firm covers every blade of grass for its clients and no stone is left unturned in attempting to achieve a positive result', says a client of Tees Law in Cambridge. Partner Clare Pilsworth joined from Woodfines LLP to lead the practice. Collaboratively trained associate Deborah Hargreaves is a rising star in complex and sensitive cases involving children and financial matters.

Practice head(s):Clare Pilsworth

Other key lawyers:Deborah Hargreaves; David Redfern


'The team worked seamlessly, with a single lead point of contact, which gave continuity and reassurance at a time of significant stress. The approach was always measured and objective, making it easy to ask for advice and to understand the various options.'

'I have worked with Clare Pilsworth on a number of high-value and complicated matrimonial finance cases. She is an excellent lawyer with great technical abilities and has a common sense approach in all her matters. She works extremely hard on behalf for all her clients in what are often very long drawn-out difficult cases.'

'What made them stand out was the fact that they were able to guide and lead through their legal expertise without being patronising. They acted in a way that helped defuse possible conflict whilst making me feel supported.'

'Deborah Hargreaves genuinely strives to help her clients. She is kind, compassionate and clear-headed in the advice she provides.'

'I was enormously impressed by the level of forethought and strategic planning which goes into their cases.'

'The team has a high level of knowledge and gives clear and realistic advice to its clients. Well organised and easy to work with.'

'Tees has an approachable and client-friendly team.'

'An excellent local firm that wouldn't be out of place operating in the City of London.'

'David Redfern is a partner of great experience and a supreme strategic thinker.'

Work highlights

  • A family dispute over the proceeds of a sale of a property.
  • A complex claim for financial provision under Schedule 1 of the Children Act, acting for a respondent father.
  • Collaborative law case nearing conclusion by lodging agreed minute of consent.
  • Acting for a non-biological father in respect of his application for contact and parental responsibility for twin children born to his wife, who was his girlfriend at the time of IVF treatment with donor sperm. Applying for parental order.
  • Acting for a father in Children Act proceedings to obtain a child arrangements order setting out the basis on which the children would live and spend time with the two parents.

BDB Pitmans has one partner who works between the London and Cambridge offices, but David Thompson has a growing client base in East Anglia. The firm, which is in the process of significantly expanding its regional family law offering, has a particular focus on complex financial and international issues including complex  leave-to-remove children cases. Thompson is chair of London Region of Resolution.

Practice head(s):David Thompson

The family practice at Blocks has a strong client following around Ipswich, and frequently advises on divorce and separations, financial remedies for high-net-worth individuals, child arrangement cases and pre-nuptial agreements.

Other key lawyers:John Simpson

Work highlights

  • Acting for an individual with high net worth who, following a complex divorce, is now looking to enforce arrangements put in place with regards to the children and make a cross-application for variation.

Cozens-Hardy LLP in Norwich has a team of three highly experienced partners, all of whom are collaboratively trained. Iain White, Jane Anderson and Sandra Nunn are all members of Resolution, as is solicitor Sophie Smith. White and Anderson frequently handle high-net-worth financial remedy proceedings. The firm has a legal aid contract for public law children’s advocacy and White and Smith also have a strong reputation for their work in private children cases.

Practice head(s):Iain White; Jane Anderson; Sandra Nunn

Other key lawyers:Sophie Smith

FM Family Law is a niche firm that focuses purely on divorce, family law and mediation. It has a team of four specialist family lawyers and mediators in Cambridge and Norwich. Founder Fiona McLeman and the vastly experienced Sue Bailey are the two partners and they are supported by senior associate Christina Hale and legal executive Karen Fox.

Practice head(s):Fiona McLeman

Other key lawyers:Sue Bailey; Karen Fox; Christina Hale

New to the ranking is Hayes + Storr Solicitors and Notaries, which operates a busy family law department from Fakenham that delivers services through the firm's seven offices in North and West Norfolk. Practice head Rob Colwell specialises in mid- to high-value asset divorce cases, while solicitor Maria Endall, who joined after working as a registrar for Norfolk County Council, focuses on private law child cases.

Practice head(s):Rob Colwell

Work highlights

  • Represented petitioner in emotive divorce and financial matters, successfully settling with assets of over £1.7m.
  • Represented respondent in a multimillion-pound family farming marriage breakdown case without issuing formal proceedings, saving the client tens of thousands of pounds and the associated stress.
  • Helped a director of a regional multimillion-pound family franchise business with outstanding financial matters following a historical divorce.
  • Represented respondent through to a successful £1.1m outcome against an applicant that refused to cooperate at first with disclosure of matrimonial assets in her name.
  • Skilful negotiation at short notice of complex child matters with a litigant in person, involving a cross-jurisdictional element, which settled by amicable agreement and only involved the court as a paper exercise for sealing.

Hegarty LLP has a team of seven practitioners across its Peterborough, Stamford and Oakham offices. Associate Chris Brown , solicitor Jane Tatlock, veteran family law executive Carl Russell and legal executive Lesley Knight, who is recommended for domestic violence and Children Act matters, are the key contacts in Peterborough. Pavinder Khela in Stamford and Julia Weber in Oakham are recommended for divorce and separation matters, matrimonial finances, cohabitation agreements, pre-nuptial agreements and child arrangement orders.

Other key lawyers:Chris Brown; Jane Tatlock; Carl Russell; Lesley Knight; Pavinder Khela; Julia Weber

Spire Solicitors LLP joins the ranking having seen a growing workload of family matters for the lawyers in its Norwich, Dereham and Wymondham offices. The practice led by Sarb Gosal and Richard Bevan continued to expand in 2018 with the hire of associate Kira Arden from Rudlings Wakelam. The deep bench of lawyers handles a diverse range of matters for clients in Norfolk including childcare law, collaborative law, divorce or dissolution, cohabitation agreements and domestic violence.

Practice head(s):Sarb Gosal; Richard Bevan

Other key lawyers:Amanda Maruca; Kira Arden; Nisha Jandu

Interview with...

Law firm partners and practice heads explain how their firms are adapting to clients' changing needs

Interview with...

Law firm partners and practice heads explain how their firms are adapting to clients' changing needs

GC Diversity and Inclusion Report

In partnership with...

Interview with...

Law firm partners and practice heads explain how their firms are adapting to clients' changing needs

International comparative guides

Giving the in-house community greater insight to the law and regulations in different jurisdictions.

Select Practice Area

GC Diversity and Inclusion Report

In partnership with...

Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments in East Anglia for Family

Legal Developments in the UK

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to

Press Releases in the UK

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to