Family Law Advocacy

How Barristers help the Victims of Family Failure

By John Eekelaar, Mavis Maclean

Edited by: Mavis Maclean

The role of the law in settling family disputes has been a matter of particular debate over the past 25 years. In keeping with the general public perception, the media has been largely critical about the role of lawyers in family law matters, sustaining a general lack of confidence in the legal profession, and a more specific feeling that, in family matters, lawyers aggravate conflict or even represent a female conspiracy. The climate in which family lawyers practice in England and Wales is a harsh one. The authors of this path-breaking study felt it was time to find out more about the contributions of barristers in family law cases in the UK. Much of the study is comprised of an in-depth examination of the day-to-day activity of members of the UK Family Law Bar through observation of individual barristers as they performed their role in the context of a court hearing. In answering questions, such as whether the family justice system is excessively adversarial, whether family barristers earn too much from human unhappiness, or indeed whether those working in the front line of child protection earn enough, the authors reach some surprising conclusions. "The barrister is both mentor and guide for the client" is how they begin their conclusion; "we hope that we have shown that society should value their contribution better" is how they finish.


132 pages

Publication Date: 5/15/2009
Format: Paper
ISBN: 9781841132778