The Russell-Cooke family team is back from the Resolution National Conference, which was held this year in person for the first time since the pandemic.

It was wonderful to catch up with so many people and to meet new colleagues. For some of the junior members of our team, this was their first opportunity to attend the conference in person. However, if you’re not a family lawyer you may not be aware of Resolution.

Resolution: who's it for?

Resolution is an organisation of family lawyers, who are all committed to ensuring that there is a constructive approach to family law issues. Membership is entirely voluntary and you do not have to join to be a family lawyer, so those that do are signing up to ensure that when working with families the main focus is on getting the best outcome without unnecessary conflict.

A separation can be difficult enough, without the professionals instructed increasing the tension.

However, in my experience, most family lawyers care deeply about their work and genuinely want the best for their clients.

At the conference, I was reflecting on the importance of Resolution. It is not just the excellent training they provide, or the opportunities to meet like-minded colleagues, or even the opportunity to learn from incredible speakers like partner Samantha Little, who gave an update on the state of the law at this latest conference.

More than that, for our clients it is vital that we work to get them the best possible outcome with minimum acrimony. This does not mean that as solicitors, we simply roll over or tell our clients to agree on everything their partner is suggesting.

However, it does mean that we will try to avoid inflaming any disagreement, and make sure, for example, that letters sent remain professional.

It also means being open to considering alternative methods of dispute resolution, such as mediation, private hearings, or other forms of negotiation.

For people going through a relationship breakdown or having a dispute over the arrangements for children, it can be a very difficult and emotional time. It is therefore key that as professionals we try to minimise their stress wherever possible. This is something that Resolution members try to achieve throughout their practice but also in looking at ways the system could be better for people.

A recent example of this is the introduction of No Fault Divorce. Resolution has campaigned for years for this change in the law so that a divorce does not need to begin with a requirement to blame one person.

Most of our team are accredited by Resolution

Many of our solicitors are Resolution Accredited Specialists in their chosen fields within family law.

On top of this, our solicitors sit on a number of Resolution committees, from London, Surrey and South West London Resolution committees at both the senior and more junior level, to technical groups such as the Legal Aid, International, Innovative Solutions, Accreditations and Standards committee.

It has even spread to our non-family lawyers, with a member of our private client team offering her expertise to the Pensions and Tax Committee. This enables us to try to work to ensure that family law remains client focused and that progress is made to keep protecting our clients. 

I am proud to be part of a firm that works to promote Resolution’s ethos to always try to do the best for our clients.