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  1. Family: Hampshire
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Moore Blatch LLP fields a ‘top-drawer’ family practice that is praised for its ‘good commercial acumen and eye for detail’. The practice is well-versed in wealth protection matters, including cohabitation and pre-nuptial agreements, financial remedy arrangements and commercial asset management issues, drawing on the expertise of the firm’s strong corporate and commercial teams when necessary. It also has extensive expertise in private law children matters, particularly concerning contested proceedings and matters involving either national or international relocations, and is recommend for cases that intersect with tax and trusts mandates. Clients include high-net-worth individuals and agricultural business owners. Debra Emery leads the team in Hampshire and is ‘thorough and robust in her negotiations, whilst being pragmatic and collaborative in seeking solutions’. She is an expert in business asset management during divorce settlements and is an accredited collaborative solicitor and mediator. Clients also single out matrimonial finance specialist Katy Barber, who ‘is a reliable and thoughtful adviser’.

Paris Smith LLP is ‘a very strong regional firm’, which clients single out for its ‘good-quality work and pragmatic, solution-based approach'. The team, which is based in Southampton and Winchester, is known for its work in matrimonial matters and intersecting commercial issues including financial matters arising from divorce proceedings. The practice is also well-versed in pre-nuptial agreements, asset management issues, tax mitigation mandates and cohabitee disputes and is noted for its focus on mediation and collaborative law work. It has an extensive track record advising UK clients on offshore assets and foreign clients on multi-jurisdictional property issues. Department head Frank Prior is ‘a clever tactician who doesn’t miss a trick’; he is ably supported by Huw Miles, who is ‘supremely confident; his attitude cows weaker opponents’. Other key names include Neil Davies, whose ‘calm demeanour hides a first-class tactician’, Rachel Osgood and Sarah Passemard.

The ‘excellent’ practice at Blake Morgan LLP regularly handles financial remedy matters; wealth preservation advice including pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements; onshore and offshore asset management; and tax matters. Children cases are another area of strength; its expertise includes international relocation matters, alternative family structure issues and Children Act cases. The team includes trained collaborative and mediation lawyers and works alongside the firm’s well-regarded private client, dispute resolution and corporate teams when necessary. Its client base largely focuses on the South and includes high-net-worth families and business owners. The ‘superbSimon Burge, who is known for handling high-net-worth cases, leads the department, which includes Children Act expert Rachel Giles and associate and trained mediator Sarah French.

Coffin Mew LLP provides ‘straightforward advice and quick response times’. The team undertakes a full range of financial family matters including high-value asset protection, onshore and offshore asset advice for international clients, and financial remedies applications for clients in the South. Its children work extends to advising on contested Children Act proceedings, sexual assault cases and acrimonious shared care arrangements among others. Collaborative and mediations matters are a frequent feature of its workload, and the practice also specialises in armed forces pensions work, with senior partner Chris Upfield leading on these matters. Sally Pike heads the department and attracts praise for her ‘calm and constructive approach’; she is recommended for high-value pre-nuptial agreements and divorce settlements. She is ably supported by senior associate and accredited mediator Tina Day as well as solicitor Rachel Evans.

Phillips Solicitors is a ‘truly professional one-stop shop’. Its expertise extends to all areas of family work including financial remedy proceedings, pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements, and international asset management. The firm is also strong in family matters concerning children and frequently advises on cohabitation arrangements, child relocation issues and contested cared share agreements. Its client base focuses on the South, with a growing roster of clients in London and based outside the UK. Firm director and accredited mediator Howard Gardener ‘is an astute and excellent advocate’. Also recommended are senior associate and trained collaborative lawyer Robert Parker, who ‘ensures he is always working in the client’s best interest at all times’ and ‘goes that extra mile’; and Hayley Eachus, who is recommend for financial matters.

Trethowans LLP is praised for its ‘very professional conduct of cases and immensely supportive approach to clients’. It advises military personnel, business owners and high-net-worth individuals on financial matters, including financial remedy situations, offshore and onshore asset protection, and contested maintenance matters. The practice also has a strong offering in children law issues such as shared arrangement agreements, internal and international relocation orders and Children Act litigation. Practice leader Andrew Mercer is ‘a bright, practical and commercial lawyer’, and Emma Wilders-Pratt ‘combines the perfect balance of strength and determination to get the very best result’. Grant Cameron and Juliet Mayhew are also recommended.

Larcomes focuses its family practice on public law children work and spanning international relocation disputes and shared care arrangements. More specialist areas of expertise that the practice undertakes include child abuse and child sexual abuse cases, police protection order applications, and cases involving vulnerable or mentally incapacitated persons. The firm’s client roster includes local authorities and guardians. Mark Tooley has extensive experience in litigation and is recommended alongside Julian Quartermain, who specialises in Court of Protection applications, and department head Sandra Phillips -

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Legal Developments in South East for Family: Hampshire

  • Parking rights: here to stay? Consent might be the surprising answer 


    In the field of the acquisition of easements by prescription, little has caused more consternation over the last decade or so than the question of whether a right to park cars can be acquired by twenty years user as of right. The types of property capable of being adversely affected range from individual residential units all the way up to major development sites. The establishment of such a right can have a devastating impact on the value of the burdened land.

    - Falcon Chambers

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