James is a partner in the family team. He specialises in the financial and other consequences of relationship formation or breakdown.
His principal role is to help people separate sensibly. He is well known for having a commercial, constructive and resolution focused approach combined with the ability to pursue litigation through the courts with tenacity where necessary.
James is considered an expert in complex financial cases, including those involving businesses and trust/tax structures. He has considerable knowledge of pre-nuptial agreements (having sat on the Advisory Group to the Law Commission).
James is a fellow of the International Academy of Family Lawyers. As such, many matters in which James is instructed involve an international dimension. James has lectured nationally and internationally including for the European Family Justice Observatory, the British Institute of International and Comparative Law and the International Association of Collaborative Practitioners.
In contrast with many family lawyers, James’ practice is not limited to representing married couples or those in a personal relationship and as such he also acts for other family members, business partners or individuals who own property together or face family related legal issues.
He has a particularly strong reputation in resolving matters through constructive discussions and cooperation. James is both an accredited mediator and a collaborative family lawyer (both specialist forms of dispute resolution designed to reach solutions in a non-Court based arena).
James is ranked as a leading individual and described as a "star" and "calm and technically creative" in the Legal 500 (2019).
James has lectured for both Resolution and the Family Mediators Association.
Acted in the:
- Chancery Law case of Ashby v Kilduff  EWHC 2034 (Ch) regarding the disputed ownership of a number of properties following the breakdown of a same-sex cohabiting relationship
- divorce case of F v F (S intervening)  EWHC 2814 relating to the husband’s attempts to bankrupt himself to avoid his wife’s financial claims
- leading case on nullity and Islamic marriages of El Gamal v HRH Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed al-Maktoum  EWHC B27 (Fam), which also appeared in the Court of Appeal in relation to the financial provision for children of unmarried parents
- Sources in Chambers HNW (2018) says he "handles in financial remedy proceedings and prenuptial agreements, and interviewees note his specialism in matters involving same-sex relationships and civil partnership law."
- James is highly regarded for his work in matrimonial dispute resolution, experience as a mediator and for his handling of financial issues such as schedule 1 matters. Sources say "he is a complete delight and clients love him. He's a good lawyer, a good strategist and knows where a case is going", Chambers UK (2018).
- Described in The Legal 500 (2017) as "thoughtful and clever" and "fights his cases in a low-key way and secures excellent results for his clients." He "works very effectively with the parties and has the rare knack of being able to satisfy both parties"; he has "a razor-sharp brain and a constructive, "let’s sort it out" approach"
- Ranked in Band 3 by Chambers HNW (2017) for family/matrimonial who comment that "he knows the right way to behave and will support people to do the right thing"
- He is regarded by Chambers UK (2017) as a "very strong tactician" who "gives first-class advice and works incredibly hard for his clients, maximising what can be achieved in a case"
- Recognised as a 'leading individual' by Chambers UK who comment that he "impresses with his diligence and maturity" and "just really fantastic…vastly knowledgeable and experienced"
- Citywealth Leaders List (2018) describes James as being "committed and compassionate" bringing "huge integrity to his work" and someone who "never leaves a stone unturned as he gets to grips with the detail of his cases". Labelled as "committed and compassionate in equal measure" by the Citywealth Leaders List (2017). Identified as a 'prominent figure' in the Citywealth Leaders List 2015 and 2016.
- Described by The Legal 500 (2016) as "very knowledgeable"
- Described in Chambers (2015) as "a very precise character, he has great attention to detail and he's very thoughtful"
- Recommended by The Legal 500 who note his "attention to detail" and describe him as "an exceptional talent"
- Listed in the Thomson Reuters 'London Super Lawyers' lists
- Shortlisted for Jordan's Publishing 'Family Law Partner of the Year' Award
- James is a fellow of the International Academy of Family Lawyers
- James sits on the Family Law Committee of the Law Society of England and Wales (having previously chaired the committee). The committee plays a leading role in family law policy, practice and reform.
- Sits alongside a small group of experts (including High Court judges and Queens Counsel) on the Editorial Board of the Practical Law, Family Division (the leading provider of family law know-how)
- Is regularly called upon by the mainstream media for interview or comment on family law matters, and as such James has appeared on the Today programme, the BBC, Sky and Channel 4 News
Studied law at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, and BPP Law School
Co-author of The Law Society's Family Law Protocol on financial provision for unmarried parents