The inadequacies of Family Law and how Gregorian Emerson Family Law Solicitors can assist you to overcome them
1. Family Law is a term which describes an area of law intended to assist separating or divorcing families. However, having practised at a senior level of partner in Central London commercial law practices and having defended my own international relocation case, it was abundantly clear that there are a number of fundamental problems in this area of law, which go unrecognised and/or cannot be resolved by solicitors with conventional training. Hence, my move into family law.
2. Ultimately, this is because the practise of “black letter law”, which is the only skill set which a lawyer is trained to possess, only encompasses a very narrow element of understanding and analysing the reasons for family breakdown. Such a limited and one-dimensional skill set does nothing to address what we refer to as the “psychology of the individuals/parents and of the case”. Ultimately, the personality/psychology of the individuals involved, how they communicated and related to each other and resolved disputes through the relationship/marriage and after separation, including in any subsequent legal dispute or litigation, has absolutely nothing to do with family law. The relationship, its breakdown and any conflict did not occur by dint of any legal process. That legal process is simply the construct or envelope in which lawyers subsequently seek to solve the family dispute and/or protect the children’s best interests which, rarely, if ever, depend on any legal principle or fact.
3. Family lawyers are not, however, trained in the very subject matter of their practice which enables them to properly understand and represent their clients and their disputes. That subject matter is, of course, the unique personality and psychological which each client possesses, together with their understanding and effectiveness around dealing with matters of communication and conflict resolution and issues of clinical mental health (e.g. substance abuse and personality disorders such as narcissism/NPD). These are the very qualities which brought the parties together, evolved and manifested themselves in their relationship and, ultimately, their separation and which, therefore, are reflected in their legal dispute. Without that understanding it is impossible to properly represent a client either with a view to seeking to achieve agreement or to build a case for litigation, particularly where an ongoing parental relationship, beyond the litigation, needs to be maintained. It should always be borne in mind that the family justice system is simply a legal envelope for determining disputes which have failed to be resolved by any other more constructive means.
4. Time and again, the typical blame game/culture, misunderstanding of the client’s and indeed “the opposition’s” style/effectiveness of engaging in any dispute, as well as any relevant mental health issues and knowledge regarding how to improve communication and conflict resolution between the parties, blight the legal cases of clients who instruct us after being represented by other law firms. They present as completely disillusioned with how they have either lost their voice in litigation, placed on the back foot or how their dispute and personal circumstances morphed into a litigation case which bears little or no resemblance to the problem they want solved (and the reasons for it). Ultimately, this inadequacy in training and skill set would be completely unacceptable in commercial law, where it is imperative that the team the client instructs comprises solicitors who understand the subject matter of their practice, not only the applicable laws. Such commercial clients expect a lawyer to analyse and present the case most effectively through their expertise, objectivity, understanding and experience (which can only be as good as the training, skill set and qualifications of the lawyer themselves), not simply act as an echo chamber or give them a “one size fits all” legal service in which they act as the client’s word processing department.
5. These are not issues that you will experience with Gregorian Emerson Family Law Solicitors. In addition to a lawyer with a pedigree of working in commercial and family law at the highest level, we have years of experience in working with experts in the areas of communication and conflict resolution, understanding the psychology of individuals so far as relevant to the dispute and the psychology of the dispute, itself, as well as issues of clinical mental health, including personality disorders such as narcissism/NPD and EUPD (BPD), and substance misuse, such as “alcoholism”.
This knowledge maximises the chances of early agreement and of litigation success. Our joint legal and psychological strategies are 100% effective, with our litigation success rates at around 95%. In the 5% of cases where the client does not succeed in the litigation, we have informed them of exactly why that is likely at the first meeting with them (some facts simply cannot be “undone”) and/or what they would have to do to prevent such an outcome at the outset. Please see our Testimonials.
6. In addition to this “added value” joint legal and psychological approach to Family Law, such an approach also fundamentally supports the parents beyond any court involvement, which is required to maintain any future relationship between separated coparents.
Contact our Family Law Solicitors
If you have a family dispute that needs resolving, we are here to help and look forward to your call. Please contact us, or call us on 01483 826 470.