Areas of Expertise
Gemma relocated to Birmingham from a specialist family set. She now specialises exclusively in children law.
She has written for the Practical Law Company and Jordan’s Family Law.
She has spoken at training conferences and seminars for solicitors and magistrates. She has provided court skills training as a component of a masters degree course in social work.
She was a member of the Local Family Justice Board meeting in Oxford.
She was shortlisted for Birmingham Law Society’s 2017 Barrister of the Year award, and Pro Bono Lawyer of the Year award.
Gemma represents local authorities, children, parents, and extended family members at all stages of care proceedings and appeals. She has represented parents and children in final hearings that have lasted several weeks. She has also represented foster carers.
She has been instructed by the Official Solicitor and has experience of parents who face difficulties in providing instructions, as well as children able to participate directly in proceedings.
She has dealt with applications for leave to oppose adoption, post-adoption/placement contact, and contact with children in care.
She has experience of proceedings involving:
- Non-accidental injuries (bruising, fractures, head injury)
- Child death
- Fabricated/induced illness
- Substance misuse
- Psychiatric illness
- Sexual abuse
- Threats of honour killing and risk of forced marriage
- Children who have been brought into the country illegally
- Overseas assessment and placement
- Designation arguments
- Children giving evidence
She has also advised on human rights claims arising during the course of proceedings.
Gemma represents parents (and non-birth parents), children, 16.4 guardians, and extended family members on the full range of private child law applications, which have included:
- Issues of name, religion, parental responsibility, schooling, and consent to medical treatment
- Implacable hostility/alienation
- Psychiatric and psychological illness
- Sexual abuse and domestic violence including threats to kill children and attempted murder of the other parent
- Relocation and temporary removal of children overseas
- Committal for breach of contact orders