Sarah specialises in all areas of public and private children’s law.
Sarah’s private law practise includes the representation of both fathers and mothers in applications made under the Children Act 1989. She has dealt with a wide number of issues including abduction, high conflict intractable disputes and allegations of sexual assault and physical and mental harm, amongst others. She has dealt with a number of private law cases which have required the involvement of a Social Worker, separately represented Guardian, independently represented children, or social service intervention.
Sarah’s public law practice primarily involves the representation of parents within care proceedings, but she also has experience of appearing for the Local Authority, Guardian, Grandparents and other interested parties. She has represented parties at every stage of care proceedings, and has considerable experience in contested adoptions. Sarah regularly represents vulnerable clients including parents with learning disabilities, parents with addictions, teenage parents and parents who have had more than one child removed by the Local Authority. Her cases have included allegations of severe neglect, domestic violence and non-accidental injury cases. She is well acquainted with the full range of injunctive relief available through the courts.
Sarah has experience of using interpreters. She also has considerable experience of appearing in cases involving litigants in person and McKenzie Friends.
Sarah’s cases include:
- Contested Hearings involving the instruction and subsequent cross-examination of numerous experts including child and adult psychiatrists and psychologists
- Representation of parents in lengthy fact finding hearings involving allegations of non-accidental injuries to the children or of extensive domestic violence including allegations of rape and violence
- Applications for permission to discharge Care Orders
- Applications for contact with a child in care
- Cases involving disputed paternity
- Cases involving allegations and judicial findings of implacable hostility by one parent against the other which have either resulted in the removal of the child from that parent, or the threat of that removal.
- Applications for Specific Issue Orders including the change of a school, change of a child’s surname and culturally sensitive issues such as a child’s circumcision.
- Applications for Prohibited Steps Orders preventing removal of the child from the jurisdiction where there is a real fear that one or other parent will abduct the child to a non-Hague Convention country.
- English Literature BA (Hons) (2.1)
- Graduate Diploma in Law (Distinction)
- Bar Vocational Course (Very Competent)
- Wilfred Getz Award (Gray's Inn, 2004)
- Criminal Bar Association
- Family Bar Association
- Member of the Western Circuit