Annabel was formerly a Solicitor for over ten years. In 2005, Annabel was called to the Bar and currently enjoys a busy and diverse practice encompassing work in areas of family law and civil law. As a solicitor, Annabel managed a large and heavy caseload dealing with Family and Civil work, perhaps highlighted by the case of Rees v Darlington Memorial Trust (2003) UKHL 52 a test case, before a seven member panel, in the House of Lords, for a disabled Claimant, in respect of her right to recover damages for the birth of her son, following a negligently performed sterilisation. The case attracted widespread legal and media coverage, as a result of which she conducted interviews on both national and local radio.
Areas of Practice At The Bar
Divorce and Ancillary Relief: Annabel advises on all aspects of separation and divorce, including providing advice on financial matters and complex settlements often involving companies and farms. Coming from a farming family Annabel has a particularly in depth understanding of the financial workings of farming businesses, whether they be sole traders or corporate entities. Annabel regularly deals with forensic accountants. Annabel represents clients at the first appointment, financial dispute resolutions hearings and final hearings. Annabel undertakes applications for maintenance pending suit, disclosure and enforcement orders. Annabel acts for parents and children in applications under Schedule 1 Children Act 1989 and in relation to DNA testing.
Private Law: Annabel is regularly instructed in respect of child arrangement orders, prohibited steps and specific issue orders. Her experience includes acting for parents, relatives and Guardians. Annabel has a keen interest in cases involving implacable hostility. Her practice also includes cases involving relocation within and outside the jurisdiction.
Public Law: Annabel undertakes a significant amount of public law work representing all parties, including local authorities, at various levels in proceedings. She has experience in conducting finding of fact hearings involving allegations of non accidental injury, sexual, emotional and domestic violence. Such cases frequently involve her engaging with forensic computer experts including mobile telephone experts. Her practice encompasses all aspects of care proceedings including special guardianship orders and adoption, as illustrated by the case of MN v CA v BS LBB  EWHC 1178 Fam, in which she successfully resisted an application for leave to oppose the making of an adoption order. The case also involved arguments as to whether there had been effective service of a notice in respect of the final hearing, at which an adoption order might be made.
Annabel acts for Claimants and Defendants at all stages of proceedings, with a particular interest in road traffic accidents. Her practice includes advisory work on liability and quantum. Annabel has excellent inter-personal skills and this coupled with her sensible approach to her cases enables her to develop a good working relationship with professional and lay clients.
Direct Access: Annabel is qualified to accept instructions from lay clients and regularly does so.
Annabel regularly presents seminars and training programmes to solicitors. Recent seminar topics include:
Child Witnesses – A Practical Approach
New Family Procedure Rules 2010
Costs In Ancillary Relief Cases
Financial Orders For Children Under The Children Act 1989
Relocation, Relocation – relocating within and outside the jurisdiction.
Member of Inner Temple
Member of the North eastern Circuit
Family Law Bar Association
Personal Injury Bar Association