Child custody advice with children’s welfare at its core

‘For the children’s sake, we always encourage parents to reach an agreement between themselves’

As a parent you know your child’s needs better than any court. That’s why our solicitors who specialise in residence and contact, always encourage you and your partner or spouse to reach an agreement, rather than have a decision imposed on you by a judge. Litigation is an uncertain process and one over which you have little control, so you should see it as a last resort.

Child custody advice with children’s welfare at its core

We have many years’ experience of providing residence and contact advice, and successfully helping parents to avoid unnecessary court action.

  • Benefits of mediation
    Family mediation is less formal and intimidating than the court process and the decisions ultimately rest with the parents. Our specialist family solicitors and mediators will help you reach an agreement outside the court, bringing benefits for all involved.
  • Understanding the court process
    If your only remaining option is to go through the courts, then child custody advice from our solicitors can guide you through each stage of the process. This will help you to reach a solution for you and your children with the minimum of stress.
  • Court orders
    Parents can’t always agree about what’s best for their children – so disputes can arise which affect everyone involved. For example, you might fundamentally disagree about your children’s welfare, ranging from who they live with or have contact with, to the school they attend or whether they can leave the UK on holiday. Seeking a court order is sometimes the only way forward.


Our credentials

What the team is known for: Highly experienced at taking on financial remedy cases. Focuses on settling issues through collaboration or mediation where possible, and through litigation if necessary. Active representing guardians in public law care proceedings. Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients): “They are highly skilled and committed professionals who work incredibly hard and diligently for their clients.” “They provided an excellent service in a very straightforward and non-technical way.” Notable practitioners: Richard Ellis (Band 2) enjoys a strong reputation for his public children expertise, and is also skilled at taking on matrimonial finance cases. He is hailed by one commentator as “phenomenally good and a great advocate.” Sharon MacDonald (Band 3) frequently represents high net worth clients on alternative dispute resolution proceedings, such as mediation and collaborative law, associated with complicated finance matters. One client reports: “She was very thorough – all the paperwork was correct down to the minutest detail. She obtained a wonderful result for me.” Jon Toogood (Eminent Practitioner) handles matrimonial finance issues in the context of divorce cases, and is a skilled arbitrator and collaborative lawyer. One client praises his “excellent technical knowledge, very good commercial awareness and very good bedside manner.” Katherine Lauder is a Recognised Practitioner.” Chambers 2017 South West

“What the team is known for: Well-known team in the Oxford market, with substantial experience in divorce and financial remedy matters involving complex assets. Also advises on public law children cases, including those involving allegations of non-accidental injury. Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients): “A really good outfit, and universally likeable.” Notable practitioners: Mark Phillips (Band 3) is experienced advising in divorce and financial remedy matters, especially those involving complex assets such as pensions and business interests. One source says of him: “He is very intellectually able, and has a pleasant, persuasive way about him.” Head of the Oxfordshire family team Simon Bassett (Band 3) is particularly active in matrimonial finance cases. One source reports: “I’ve been really impressed with his ability to think creatively around the financial cases, and to look for solutions that aren’t obvious.”” Chambers 2017 Oxford and Surrounds

“Royds Withy King is ‘one of Bath’s leading family law firms’ for collaborative law and mediation, and department head Richard Ellis has ‘a fantastic reputation’ in care proceedings. Also recommended are Sharon MacDonald and Jon Toogood, and newly promoted senior associates Katherine Lauder and Rebecca Stevens.” Legal 500 2016 South West

“Royds Withy King’s group is led by Simon Bassett who is ‘a consistent high performer, particularly in matrimonial finance’. The ‘efficient and committed’ Anne Davies specialises in child-related work” Legal 500 2016 South East


Contact us now for child custody advice and support in making sensitive and sensible arrangements for your children

Sharon showed real empathy, I didn't feel pressured and yet the outcome was fair to both parties. During a very difficult time I felt that there was someone there for me.
Reginald Rollason

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