With our expertise across all areas of family law, you will be glad to have One Pump Court barristers on your side. Our blend of fierce advocacy, sensitive advice and constructive dispute resolution, together with the friendly, professional service offered by our clerks, are all aimed at achieving a brighter future for you and your family.

In both public and private law, we have built an excellent reputation as childcare practitioners dedicated to the representation of children, parents and wider family members. We also have a specialist finance team with extensive experience of litigation involving matrimonial finances, cohabitation, inheritance and the costs of raising children. We are committed to offering the highest quality advice and representation, whilst keeping legal costs under control ensuring value for money.

Our members and distinguished former members include judges of the High Court and Family Court, IFLA-accredited members of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, authors of leading practitioners’ texts, accredited mediators and winners of national awards. Members are trustees of national and local charities working in the field of law, domestic violence or human rights. Members regularly give practitioners’ seminars, and some hold (or have held) academic appointments.

We advise on:

  • Family Finance – Family Finances: Divorce, Cohabitation and Inheritance
  • Care and adoption – Childcare disputes with social services and adoption (“public law”)
  • Family Disputes – Childcare disputes within the family (“private law”), including those with international issues
  • Court of Protection
  • Family Abuse – Domestic abuse, forced marriage and female genital mutilation

One Pump Court has a specialist finance team with extensive experience of—

  • matrimonial financial remedies cases (including after overseas divorces, or where jurisdiction issues arise),
  • cohabitation cases,
  • inheritance, wills and probate,
  • child support maintenance,
  • applications for financial remedies for the benefit of children (e.g. under Children Act 1989 Schedule 1), including where a party lives overseas,
  • financial claims relating to powers of attorney and deputies,
  • public law financial assistance (such as special guardianship packages, kinship allowances).

The inter-disciplinary nature of chambers gives us an unrivalled edge over “family-only” sets in cases which do not neatly fit into “family law”, such as cases where there are—

  • third parties asserting an interest in property,
  • cohabitee disputes,
  • land law issues,
  • tenancy issues,
  • tax issues,
  • trusts issues,
  • issues about the ownership of limited companies,
  • bankruptcies
  • criminal confiscation proceedings.

We also have particular expertise in relation to cases with significant pension assets, including where pension freedoms have offered new options to parties over 55.

Our members have experience of applications for declarations of marital status (including overseas religious marriages), declarations of parentage, presumption of death and contested divorce.

We are also pleased to advise in non-contentious cases, such as pre-/post-nuptial agreements, cohabitation agreements, settling deeds of trust for co-owners of property.

Remember we also offer a range of alternative disputes resolution options which can often be effective way of reaching a solution whist limiting financial and emotional costs and substantially reducing the time lapse between identifying a problem and resolving it.

In a legal climate where the Courts frequently complain about the high percentage of parties’ assets being wasted on legal costs, we offer affordable rates, and work hard to ensure that every penny you spend is strictly necessary to achieve a favourable outcome to your case.

One Pump Court has an outstanding reputation for representing parents, children and wider family members in care and adoption proceedings.

We are now unique at the family bar for not encouraging instructions from local authorities. This frees our barristers to be fearless in challenging local authorities which have fallen short of the high standards all children deserve. The challenges we have championed have led to developments in law and practice over the years, such as the requirements on authorities to provide written “care plans” when applying for public law orders.

Our members have unparalleled experience in cases involving allegations of—

  • the death of a child or parent through the conduct of a party;
  • serious non-accidental injuries;
  • domestic violence;
  • Fictitious Illness Syndrome (Sometimes known as Münchausen syndrome, and Münchausen by proxy);
  • Mental health issues which may impede a parent’s childcare (including where the capacity of a party to give instructions is in doubt);
  • Serious physical health issues which may impede a parent’s childcare;
  • Alcohol-related issues,
  • Drug-related issues,
  • Radicalisation,
  • Neglect
  • Emotional harm

The interdisciplinary structure of One Pump Court gives us a distinct advantage over family-only sets of barristers in cases which do not fall neatly into family law, such as those with ancillary criminal, immigration, housing and education. This is especially important in allowing us to advise on areas where the only remedy might be obtained through judicial review, such as challenging leaving care arrangements, challenging care plans where a court feels there is no alternative to a care order, challenging special guardianship and kinship provision. We can also advise on claims for damages following unlawful removal/detention, either within care proceedings or as stand-alone applications.

We often advise after care orders have been made on opposing placement and adoption orders, applying to discharge care orders, or applications for contact. In these difficult areas we are careful to give realistic advice, but have a good track record of challenging orders both at appellate level and through further applications to the Family Court.

One Pump Court is recognised for its high quality of representation in the full range of private law family disputes. The breadth of our collective experience means that we have particular expertise even in less frequently occurring areas, such step-parent applications/adoptions, grandparents’ rights, applications relating to medical treatment,

Our tradition of advocacy makes us especially well-known for more complex cases, such as those involving domestic violence, implacably hostile parents, parents whose mental or physical health may have childcare implications, and cases involving wider family members.

The interdisciplinary structure of One Pump Court gives us a distinct advantage over family-only sets in cases which do not fall neatly into family law, such as those with ancillary criminal, immigration, housing, education or public law issues.

Another of our specific strengths is in cases with an international element, including:

  • international child abduction cases to or from countries both inside and outside Europe or the Hague Convention.
  • Applications for leave to remove a child permanently or temporarily from the UK.
  • International contact issues.
  • Overseas adoption/registration of overseas adoptions.
  • Emergency injunctions to prevent abduction.

Both our clerks and members are aware that in such cases the clock starts ticking before a child boards a plane, and have developed systems to ensure swift and comprehensive advice is given from the outset ensuring that wherever possible emotional damage to the child is averted.

One Pump Court’s Court of Protection team offer sensitive advice to the Official Solicitor and other litigation friends acting for protected persons, as well as to other family members and friends. We are lucky to have among our members former mental health professionals and others with long experience of working with vulnerable clients, young and old.

Our members have experience of applications and issues arising from—

  • the Mental Capacity Act 2005
  • the Children Act 1989,
  • “best interest” disputes, including about residential arrangements,
  • contact,
  • protected persons moving away from the UK,
  • unlawful detention/deprivation of liberty cases, including damages cases under Mental Capacity Act 2005 s.21A.
  • medical treatment and withheld consent matters, including short-notice appearances in urgent cases.
  • Appointment and discharge of deputies (both welfare and property/financial).
  • Enduring and lasting powers of attorney

Our specialist finance team are on hand to deal with issues arising from the administration of deputy and power of attorney responsibilities.

We can advise and represent on:

  • Non-molestation orders;
  • Occupation orders;
  • Emergency injunctions to protect children from violence and abduction;
  • Forced marriage protection orders;
  • Female genital mutilation protection orders;
  • Injunctions to prevent radicalisation

One Pump Court has unrivalled experience in the area of domestic abuse, and have been for many years the preferred set for many firms and charities specialising in this area. Our members were instructed on the judicial review into the first Domestic Violence Homicide review, and have written books and articles in this area, and have held academic posts specialising in the court’s approach to domestic violence. Our members have been instructed on public enquiries into deaths of children. They were involved in some of the earliest cases under the Forced Marriage (Civil Protection) Act 2007, and were involved in the campaign to create Female Genital Mutilation Protection Orders which finally became law in 2015. Very recently we have been in the vanguard of the development of the law relating to the radicalisation of children.

The interdisciplinary nature of chambers allows for joined-up representation in the civil and criminal aspects of injunctions, as well as the housing and immigration implications which arise from the. Our specialist finance team are on hand where occupation orders are being considered as an urgent solution in property disputes.

The team at One Pump Court are well qualified to advise and assist in cases with an international element in every area of our practise.

In particular our specialist clerks are able to ensure that where there is a risk of international child abduction or retention of a child overseas our barristers can be made available to access the quickest and most effective remedies 24 hours a day, 365 days a year ensuring that maximum child safety is never unavailable.

Our respected team of financial specialists are well used to advising and representing parties where the family resources are held in different countries.

Barristers specialising in this area

Key Contacts

Family Practice Manager
Scott Haley

For more information or to arrange an appointment for any of our services please click here or contact our Family Practice Manager Scott Haley on 0207 842 7070.