Family and children


Children law

Introduction and overview

Our children team offers expert legal advice on a broad range of issues affecting families. We are hugely experienced in this area and have a wide range of expertise, including in cases with international elements and cases where there are serious safeguarding concerns. We know that every family is different and we ensure that our advice is always specifically tailored to your family’s circumstances.

How our children law solicitors can help you

Key services offered

Our specialist children lawyers can advise you on: 

  • arrangements for children, including who a child lives with, spends time with, holiday arrangements and disagreements regarding schooling; 
  • public law care proceedings;
  • social services involvement with families; 
  • international abduction; 
  • relocating with children; 
  • adoption, including adoption of step-children;  
  • rights of grandparents;
  • orders for parental responsibility; and
  • building families including surrogacy (domestic and international), donor conception agreements and assisted reproduction. 

Why choose Russell-Cooke for Children law?

About our family law team

Our expertise: 

  • We can help you from the moment that there is a difficulty in your family with any child to the very end of any court proceedings that follow. 
  • We have expert knowledge which comes from being focused entirely on children and children law. We can help you when things begin to break down in the family and when they have already broken down. We work with you to establish what is best for the children involved.  
  • We  search for solutions without going to court. If we do have to go to court, our team will go to court with you and talk on your behalf. We will guide you every step of the way.
  • If your case becomes something other than children law we are able to bring in our other colleagues to help you such as matrimonial, employment, housing and immigration law experts.  
  • Our expertise is recognised by the leading legal directories - we are ranked in Band 1 by Chambers and Partners for public children law and Band 2 for private children law. 

Our experience: 

  • We represented a mother in care proceedings where there were allegations of non-accidental injury to her child. We successfully disputed those allegations and the child returned home. 
  • We advised a young refugee seeking to care for her younger sister. 
  • We have represented parents in numerous relocation cases to both EU countries and non-EU countries where the applications were successful.  
  • We acted for a teenager who suffers from a serious and debilitating medical condition who wished to travel to Europe for treatment, for which a High Court judge gave permission. 
  • We were instructed to represent a teenager in care proceedings in the High Court who alleged that her brother had raped her when she was younger. The allegations were disputed by all the other respondents but all were found to be true. 
  • We successfully represented an applicant father in 1980 Hague child abduction proceedings, in which he was seeking the return of his daughter to Ukraine.
  • We represented the applicants in an application for an adoption order. They had been caring for a child for a number of years and all reports recommended the making of an adoption order; however, concerns were raised on behalf of the guardian about the handling of a trust fund that was in place. The case required careful consideration of trust law and we submitted that the court did not have jurisdiction to appoint a new trustee. This was accepted and an adoption order was made.

Testimonials and legal directory quotes

Here are some comments made about us.

"They are good across the board - the lawyers are safe, capable, astute and very experienced."
Chambers UK (2024)

"Russell-Cooke is hugely respected in the children law space."
Chambers UK (2024)
The team is very streamlined and the lawyers work very closely with one another. Their responses were always prompt and very detailed, any queries I had were always clarified.
Chambers UK (2024)
Sarah is fiercely committed to her clients and provides them with excellent representation. She is always willing to go the extra mile in her cases and she provides realistic and sensible advice.
Chambers UK (2024)

Charging information

Our hourly rates are competitive, offering value for money.

Charges are usually based on our hourly rates plus administrative charges and disbursements. We will provide you with an initial estimate of your likely legal costs and will update this as your requirements or the circumstances of the work change.

The current range of hourly rates for members of the team is from £200 plus VAT to £400 plus VAT per hour.

Legal aid is available on some matters.  

Get in touch

If you would like to speak with a member of the team you can contact our children law solicitors by email, by telephone on +44 (0)20 3826 7528 or complete our enquiry form.

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