Training Opportunity: Assessing Competence and Representing Children on Direct Instructions

12 June 2024 4.00-6.30pm Online Register here

The judgment of Williams J in the case of CS v SBH & Ors [2019] EWHC 634 (Fam) highlighted the importance of solicitors being able to effectively assess the legal competence of children. In 2022 the Family Justice Council published guidance on assessing competence seeking to provide some consistency of approach while recognising that each child is unique and each case fact specific.

The case of C (Child: Ability to instruct Solicitor) [2023] EWCA Civ 889 further considers this issue with Jackson LJ also providing an analysis on the function of Judges meeting children.

We are pleased to once again offer this training opportunity which is highly recommended for anyone who represents children in family law proceedings. Topics for discussion will be:
- Meeting a child client - the key principles
- How to assess competence
- How best to communicate/report wishes and feelings as articulated by a child
- Lessons from the Judgment of Williams J and Jackson LJ
- The relationship between Children’s Guardian and Child’s Solicitor when representing children
- Communicating outcomes to children – Judgment in case of Re Frank [2023] EWFC 239 (B)

With a mixture of workshops plus our panel discussion with speakers to include Alice Rogers, Chartered Child & Educational Psychologist; Matthew Jeary, Children’s Guardian and Ruth Hetherington, Partner at McAlister Family Law.

The cost will be £30 for ALC members; £50 for non-members.

 Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis. We are limited on numbers so suggest early booking to avoid disappointment.

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