Triple hire marks start of major recruitment drive for Simpson Millar’s family law team

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Member Article

Triple hire marks start of major recruitment drive for Simpson Millar’s family law team

Leading law firm Simpson Millar has announced the arrival of three new hires within its national family law team in a move which bolsters the firm’s private client offering across the UK.

The appointments signify the start of an ‘ambitious year of growth’ for the firm, with legal heavyweight and Partner Lorraine Harvey joining from Slater & Gordon where she led the Manchester-based family team, and Litigation Executive Chrissy Lightfoot joining from Belgravia based Law Firm Child & Child, where she assisted the former head of practice.

Alice Evans also joins as a Paralegal, having previously worked at Lupton Fawcett in Leeds.

David Lister, national head of the family law team, said plans were underway to further increase the team’s headcount by 12 over the coming months – doubling the total number of family law experts within the business before year end.

With more than 20 years’ experience in key areas of family law including Divorce and pre-nuptial agreements, Lorraine is a Resolution accredited specialist in financial and children disputes.

Commenting on her new role she said: “Simpson Millar is a dynamic, forward thinking firm, and I am delighted to be joining the business during such an exciting era, and amidst the rapid expansion of the family law department which is set to double in size over the course of 2021.”

Chrissy Lightfoot has also joined the family law team as a Litigation Executive and will assist the growing leadership team. Through her 12 years in family law she’s assisted senior partners at other leading firms, including Mishcon de Reya.

Commenting on the latest new recruits David Lister, head of the firm’s family law team, said: “It’s a real honour and privilege to have Alice, Chrissy and Lorraine join our expanding family law team. All three bring with them a wealth of experience, and we’re looking forward to welcoming more high-profile individuals in the coming months.

“Chrissy is known to many across London, especially in the High-Net-Worth sector, and Lorraine has a strong and established reputation within Greater Manchester and across the North West, which is a key growth area for the firm.

“Lorraine’s accolade as a Resolution accredited specialist particularly complements the work we are already doing in order to fundamentally change the face of family law to make it more accessible and open to our clients - including implementing a fully financed divorce and finance fixed price product for those who need it, and a single lawyer-led separation solution which is set for launch in March.

“As part of this, we are working in collaboration with mediators and arbitrators in order to deliver neutral evaluations and consent order drafting services for the significant proportion of couples separating who just want an easy exit with no real fuss.

“The fact that Lorraine joins us from a recognised national outfit and Chrissy joins us after operating for a number of years in one of London’s most luxurious districts tells us that we remain on the right tracks in our quest to become an employer of choice for real talent.”

With offices strategically located across the country, Simpson Millar is a leading national consumer law firm delivering Personal injury and Private Client legal services including Conveyancing, Wills, Trusts and Probate, Court of Protection, Family Law, Public Law and Education, Industrial Disease and Clinical Negligence.

It was recently commended as a leading firm in The Times’ 200 Best Law Firms 2021.

The firm, which is known as ‘The Open Lawyers’, and is establishing itself at the forefront of the changing legal services market, is committed to creating a simpler way to tackle challenges and to ‘open’ up the law to make it easier for people to get legal help and support when they need it.

This was posted in Bdaily’s Members’ News section by Hannah Butler .

Konick & Associates with Sterk Family Law

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| Local Classified | Announcement | Co-Parenting Tools - Konick & Associates with Sterk Family Law

Co-Parenting Tools - Konick & Associates with Sterk Family Law

Co-parenting may often come with conflicting opinions, challenges and struggles that complicate the process for parents and children alike. Poor cooperation, along with others, is some of the trials parents seeking to co-parent face.

Attorney Gwendolyn J. Sterk speaks with Terry McCormick, PsyD, Clinical Psychologist of Konick & Associates, to discuss some common co-parenting hurdles and some options for families to consider to find solutions.

Konick & Associates provides compassionate child, adolescent, adult, and family counseling. Looking at “the whole picture” of their clients allows their practitioners to find the core issues, and then focus on practical solutions that fit individual’s needs. They apply validated behavior strategies to transform patterns of thinking and behavior. When working with children, parents are included jointly in the plan to transfer in-session work to the home and school settings.

Dr. Terry McCormick joined the clinical team at Konick and Associates as a Clinical Psychology Fellow in 2021. She obtained a Master’s of Science in 2003 from Lewis University and a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the Adler School of Professional Psychology in 2011, with concentrations in group psychotherapy and clinical hypnosis. Her focus is holistic in nature and corresponds to the unique needs of her clients. Dr. McCormick integrates her Adlerian and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy training with a Family Systems approach to assist clients to develop insight and effective coping skills to improve their overall emotional health and daily functioning.

Over the past 29 years, Dr. McCormick worked within the criminal justice system, both in the fields of law enforcement and clinical psychology. Her experience includes court-ordered mental health assessments, group psychotherapy, and individual, couples, and family therapy with adolescents and adults. She has assisted teens, adults and families address interpersonal and community challenges related to substance use, anxiety, depression, anger management, conflict resolution, PTSD, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and personality disorders. She is particularly passionate about her work with vicarious trauma in first responders and members of the LGBTQ+ community.

As a certified mediator, Dr. McCormick utilizes a problem-solving approach to help opposing parties come to a mutually agreed-upon resolution that seeks to benefit all interested parties. Dr. McCormick also provides services for individuals, couples, and families undergoing significant life transitions ranging from incarceration, legal issues, divorce, domestic violence, and narcissistic abuse to other transformative life events, such as loss of identity and adjustment challenges in retirement. Dr. McCormick provides an empathetic environment to explore all types of transitions with the primary focus of teaching the skills needed to thrive in an evolving world.

Konick & Associates:

Sterk Family Law Group -​​

Sterk Family Law provides a full range of family law and estate planning services in Orland Park for clients in Will, Cook, and DuPage counties. The Sterk Family Law Group team provides a holistic approach to the practice of law and strives to not only service a client’s legal needs, but also help manage a client’s emotional and over-all well-being by establishing connections with a vast network of counselors, support groups, and various other non-traditional service providers within local communities by way of the unique Resource Center. The Resource Center provides Sterk Family Law clients with access to other professionals to help prepare for the next step in their lives.

This is a legal advertisement from Sterk Family Law Group. It does not constitute legal or medical advice and should not be construed as such. This podcast is for informational and educational purposes only.

Family law: When a ‘special contribution’ just isn’t special enough

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A sponsored feature, from Harrison Clark Rickerbys Solicitors

Sopgie Scotcher, of Harrison Clark Rickerbys Solicitors

When one partner is the major breadwinner and the other takes charge on the domestic front, it is established that there should be no bias in favour of the breadwinner when deciding how assets are divided when the couple separates, as long as each contributed equally to the welfare of the family.

But there are exceptions to this ‘sharing principle’, and factors such as the length of the marriage or special contributions may justify an unequal division of assets.

In one recent case, where the couple separated after seven years of marriage, the husband’s ‘special contribution’ proved to be a key issue.

A special contribution can occasionally tip the balance in favour of one party, but those cases are very much the exception. In general, a special contribution should only do that when it would be unfair to disregard an imbalance in the couple’s contributions to the relationship.

In this case, the couple have one child together who has significant disabilities. The wife carried out the vast majority of the care for the child during the marriage whilst the husband went out to work.

The husband had started a company before they married; it grew substantially after the parties married and the husband sold his shares during the marriage – in that time they had increased in value by about £293m.

When they separated, they could not agree on how to divide the assets and the wife applied for a financial remedy order. The judge decided that the wife should receive around 25 per cent of the growth in the husband’s company shareholding during the marriage.

She appealed, saying that she should receive 50% of the increase in value of the husband’s shares during the marriage – her reasons included:

The husband’s business assets built up during the marriage are ‘marital assets’, so should be shared equally.

The judge was wrong to find that the husband had made a special contribution. The wife argued that the judge failed to take into account her contributions as home-maker, focusing as he had on the financial contribution made by the husband and failing to balance that against her domestic contribution.

The Court of Appeal agreed with the wife and found the approach taken by the judge to be “deeply discriminatory”. They found that a large portion of the value of the husband’s shares were the product of endeavour during the marriage, so they were marital assets to be shared equally. The Court of Appeal ordered a much fairer split of the total marital wealth of £296.7m, and the wife received a lump sum of £145m.

For advice and help, contact Sophie Scotcher on 07570 683 519 or at