Hawkins Family Law > Milton Keynes, England > Firm Profile

Hawkins Family Law
MK11 1BE

Private client > Family: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx Tier 1

Hawkins Family Law is an established practice which offers alternative dispute resolution services in arbitration and mediation to reduce clients’ time and costs. Joanna Hawkins leads the practice and frequently works with high-net-worth individuals to unravel trusts, inherited assets and assess tax ramifications. Loraine Davenport predominantly handles complex company and trust issues but is also well-versed in children cases. Annabel Hayward ‘s area of specialism is financial provision and cohabitation. Stacey St Clair is experienced in representing clients in divorce cases and disputes about residence.

Practice head(s):

Joanna Hawkins

Other key lawyers:

Loraine Davenport; Annabel Hayward; Stacey St Clair


‘An excellent firm in the area with a well-earned reputation for good quality work and at reasonable prices.’

‘Philip Hunter is a very safe pair of hands, he is meticulous and has good judgement.’

‘Hawkins Family Law is a boutique specialist family law firm that punches above its weight. The finance team routinely handle high-value, complex matters and, in my experience, can very quickly respond to time-critical, urgent issues. They also plainly care about clients and supporting them through the process and ensuring that progressions – whether settling or pursuing the matter through contested hearings is in the client’s best interests.’

‘Helen Taylor is sharp, personable, and extremely able. She collaborates with Counsel so that the client’s case is truly understood and a better outcome is more likely for the client.’

‘Wonderful boutique firm with excellent service & great work.’

‘Jo Hawkins leads by example and the firm is excellent with difficult issues for family law’

‘It is a fantastic premier boutique firm that dominates in this location.’

‘Stacey St Clair is an excellent lawyer. She listens to clients and is intuitive at being able to tailor her approach to meet their needs.’

Hawkins Family Law is a niche family practice. The firm was established in 2001 by Jo Hawkins who recognised that there was a need for a different approach to clients going through divorce and separation. The ethos of the firm was and continues to be to provide service to the individual tailored to their needs and to offer choice in terms of the approach to the resolution of their issues. The firm has grown substantially since 2001 with much of that growth being organic, and now offers seven legal advisers with experience in arbitration, collaborative law and mediation.

The firm: Hawkins Family Law practices exclusively in family law and in September 2016 celebrated 15 years, a milestone that the firm takes great pride in.

The greatest percentage of work comprises financial disputes for mid- to high-net-worth, though the firm offers support in all areas except public law and publicly funded work. The team has achieved accreditation for private law children specialism and cohabitation as well as for financial and high-net-worth work.

The individual reputation of the lawyers in the team makes it one of the strongest in Milton Keynes and the surrounding areas, with an increasing profile nationally. The firm is known for aspiring to be the ‘go to’ family lawyers in Milton Keynes and surrounding areas, and its main source of intake continues to be referral.

All of the solicitors and trainees at Hawkins are Resolution members and the three directors plus two other solicitors are collaboratively trained. The collaborative practice continues to be promoted where appropriate with firms on a local and national level. The firm has also continued to promote the use of arbitration and has used the process to conclude several cases swiftly and effectively.

On a local level the firm has been instrumental in running the Milton Keynes regional Resolution group with Loraine Davenport as the acting chair, Annabel Hayward as the regional media representative and Jo Hawkins the new members committee member. All three directors are active members of the Milton Keynes Collaborative Pod and recently the directors have spearheaded negotiations with the local judiciary to improve the litigant in person experience at court. Nationally, Annabel is an active member of Resolution’s cohabitation committee campaigning for a law to protect the rights of cohabiting couples.

Types of work undertaken: The firm is known for its excellent service and advice to clients, particularly its strength in negotiating financial agreements either collaboratively or via litigation, with the focus being on constructive pragmatic advice.

Hawkins Family Law is notably described as a boutique family law firm which punches above its weight in terms of high-value and complex matrimonial finance instructions. It also represents clients in the negotiation of wealth protection agreements and private law childcare arrangements and is justifiably proud of the fact that it can field a team trained in collaborative law and alternative dispute resolution.

The firm also unusually recognises and supports the long-term impact of divorce or separation on the individual ensuring that all clients have the support of the in-house consultant psychotherapist, ensuring that the sensible and constructive approach for which it is known continues after the involvement of the lawyers.

Managing director Joanna Hawkins
Private client – family Joanna Hawkins
Private client – family Loraine Davenport
Private client – family Annabel Hayward
Loraine Davenport photoMs Loraine DavenportDirector at Hawkins Family Law.
Joanna Hawkins photoMs Joanna HawkinsJoanna is the Managing Director of Hawkins Family Law.
Annabel Hayward photoMs Annabel HaywardAnnabel is a Director in the family team.
Number of UK partners : 3
Number of other UK fee-earners : 4