December 15th, 2017
When we initially meet with a new client, we listen. We try and understand where the client is, what has happened, what their biggest concerns are and what they would like to be advised upon. Often one of the key questions that is not addressed by clients is what is happening to them and who is looking after them. When we ask this question, sometimes we are told "oh I have family and friends' support". Sometimes the client has or is going to Relate, but often there is no real answer. In fact, many people simply try and carry on. This is particularly apparent when there are dependent children or the client is working - the last thing on their mind is how they are doing.
When a relationship breaks down, the ripples travel a long way. You suddenly find yourself not the same as before. You look the same but something has fundamentally shifted. If you had been living in a family unit, for example, then you might find yourself alone for more time than you have been used to. This can be a good thing but it can also cause fear, loneliness and panic.
A few years ago I met up with Emma Chamberlain, who is now based in our offices at Stony. Emma is very highly qualified and a respected counsellor, but she also somehow manages to put people at ease and get to the root of what is troubling them. She has been so successful supporting our clients that we cannot now imagine a service that does not offer her support.
Often people come and see a lawyer because they do not know what they should be doing or who they should be talking to. Sometimes they don't need a lawyer, or they don't need one now. Emma can help people adjust, focus, and solidify their own position before they take on anything else and can also continue to support clients throughout what can be a challenging time of their lives. Not everyone wants to talk to someone else, but I would recommend you give it a go and see if it might help. You never know.
Jo qualified as a solicitor in 1992 having completed her training at leading Cambridge firms Taylor Vinters and Thompson and Co. After qualification, Jo moved to J Garrard and Allen in Olney where she established the family department. In 1994 Jo was made a Partner at J Garrard and Allen and continued to build and develop the practice. Jo trained as a mediator with Resolution in 1996.
In 2001 Jo decided to set up independently and created a purely family law practice in Stony Stratford recognising that in fact the skills required by family lawyers and the expectations of clients experiencing relationship breakdown and separation were different from those required in other areas of the law.
Hawkins Family Law fields 'a very professional team that delivers a high-class service and has strength-in-depth from senior to junior level'. Managing director and team head Jo Hawkins provides 'clear and accurate advice and moral support through often testing times for her clients; she focuses on deriving the best long-term outcome for her client and other parties'. The practice has particular strength financial matters, including divorce and ToLATA proceedings. Other key figures include Loraine Davenport, who has strong collaborative law expertise and handles complex children cases and high-net-worth ancillary relief matters; Annabel Hayward, who focuses on complex financial provision and co-habitation matters; and Stacey St Clair.
For more information please click here.
What the team is known for
Boutique family law firm that punches above its weight in terms of high-value and complex matrimonial finance instructions relating to business assets, pensions and substantial property portfolios, including assisting with the handling of assets abroad. Also represents clients in the negotiation of wealth protection agreements and private law childcare arrangements. Fields a team trained in collaborative law and alternative dispute resolution.
An impressed client says: "The team's personal service and individual care is a great asset,"adding that the lawyers are "always available to assist and understand the occasional need for immediate advice and guidance, providing a very reassuring service."
For more information please click here.