Practising in this sensitive and complex area of the law with calm and reassurance as well as considerable expertise to achieve cost effective solutions.
Our Family and Matrimonial team is led by Sally Leaman who has specialised in this area since qualifying in 1992.
Sally has acted for clients from the widest range of backgrounds including complex financial settlements involving family businesses, trust assets and significant property portfolios.
She has particular expertise in acting for police officers nationwide and built up a specialist knowledge in the issues relevant to this profession, for example, pension provisions on divorce.
The financial demands on individuals at times of domestic crisis are well understood. Sally will always explore with clients the most cost effective way of dealing with their case.
The Legal 500 recognised Sally Leaman as ‘highly conscientious and excellent with clients’ and ‘ stands out for her calm and reassuring approach’.
Sally has acted for clients from many different occupations/backgrounds and has particular expertise in very complex financial settlements for instance involving family businesses, trust assets, property portfolios and multi million pound asset bases and has represented business owners and high profile individuals.
Police officers – she has represented police officers and personnel nationwide and has specialised in police divorces for many years. During this time Sally has built up a wealth of knowledge regarding the treatment of police pensions on divorce enabling her to provide invaluable and practical advice to her police clients to achieve a favourable outcome targeted to her clients’ specific needs.
Always committed to seeking the best resolution to family disputes whatever the size of the case, Sally will achieve an agreed settlement outside the court process where possible, although she represents clients tenaciously in court proceedings where needed.
Financial settlements can include determining how property and other assets such as savings, shares, business assets and pensions are to be divided on divorce, whether maintenance should be paid by one party to the other and if so how much and for what period. Sally has expertise in cases where one party subsequently seeks to increase, decrease or cease maintenance payments. Financial settlement agreements can also arise where the parties are separating but not divorcing and Sally can advise on and draft a separation agreement in these circumstances.
Disputes regarding the arrangements for children, such as child arrangements applications about where the child will live and how much time they will spend with each parent, specific issue and prohibited steps applications.
Sally deals with these issues proactively but with the sensitivity necessary to achieve appropriate results.
Where a couple separate having not been married there is frequently a dispute about the ownership of property typically the family home. This can give rise to a claim under the Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act. Sometimes where the parties have children disputes arise in relation to the occupation of the home under Schedule 1 of the Children Act. These can be complex areas of law where Sally’s expertise can help clients achieve what they are entitled to.
Sally also advises and drafts cohabitation agreements determining the appropriate share of property and other aspects of cohabitation to seek to prevent any disputes arising in the future should the parties subsequently separate.
Sally can advise on prenuptial agreements – entered into prior to marriage to regulate what the division of assets should be on a subsequent divorce. She can also advise on a post nuptial agreement – entered into after marriage with the same aim, which could be used for instance to protect an inheritance one party has received.
Such claims arise when dependents, as defined under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975, receive no provision from an estate following the death of a family member, or financial supporter.
The likelihood of being able to pursue or resist such claims successfully and the likely recovery to be made are difficult and subtle areas of law which are subject to change by the Courts and their differing views of the interpretation of the legislation. It is an area of the law where Sally’s expertise and experience is of real value to her clients.
Extensive experience in pursuing claims for catastrophic injury caused by accident or medical negligence and recovering multi-million pound awards.
Specialist expertise advising individuals fearlessly and independently; practical guidance and advice to employers and institutions of their obligations in this little understood area.
Know-how gained from many years acting for insurers and within the insurance industry provided to individuals and businesses confronted with insurance issues.
A deep understanding of all areas of this work including tax work, administration of estates and Lasting Powers of Attorney in a practical and commercial context.