Sarah is regularly instructed in public law proceedings in the Family Court and the High Court. She acts for local authorities, parents, Children’s Guardians and other interested parties. Sarah is an experienced advocate and deals with cases involving serious non-accidental injury, sexual abuse, FGM, radicalisation, neglect and substance misuse. She frequently appears in the High Court on applications for deprivation of liberty declarations and other urgent applications under the Inherent Jurisdiction.
Sarah also represents parties in private cases, including applications for Child Arrangements Orders, Occupation Orders and Non-Molestation Orders. Sarah recognises the challenges faced by many individuals in private law disputes in light of changes to legal aid funding and has accepted instructions on a pro bono basis.
Notable Family Law cases
Sarah represented the local authority at this lengthy final hearing involving five children removed to foster care due to the mother experiencing a breakdown in her mental health and being diagnosed with delusional disorder. The mother had been convinced that paedophiles had abused her children and had then tried to kill the children by poisoning them. The cross examination of the mother required careful preparation and took up a lot of court time due to the mother requiring an interpreter and the assistance of an intermediary as a vulnerable witness and as the hearing was conducted remotely.
Sarah acted for the local authority in this application under the Inherent Jurisdiction for a declaration as to whether or not the local authority need to inform family members of the birth of a child relinquished for adoption by its mother.
Sarah acted for the Local Authority in this case involving serious non-accidental injuries inflicted upon a 3 week old baby, including rib fractures and a broken femur.
Sarah represented a 14 year old girl who was deemed competent and separately represented due to a conflict with her Children’s Guardian. Sarah’s client and her younger brother had been removed from their mother’s care after she had physically assaulted them. The final hearing was interrupted due to further serious disclosures and an ongoing police investigation and in the end 12 days of court time were needed.
In this case Sarah acted for the respondent Mother whose two children were removed to foster care following the youngest child (a 6 month old baby) sustaining a non-accidental traumatic injury whilst in the care of his parents.