Sorrel has been a family law specialist for most of her career. She currently practices exclusively in the law relating to children. Her main specialism is in the field of non-accidental injury and child sexual abuse, but she covers all proceedings relating to children including private law disputes and adoption.
Sorrel represents local authorities, parents, Gillick competent children and Children’s Guardians.
Her expertise is in the following areas
- Infant deaths and near deaths
- Complex non-accidental injuries, in particular head injuries
- Fabricated or induced illness
- Child sexual abuse including inter-generational abuse where the child may be both victim and abuser
- Cases of chronic abuse and neglect
- Cases involving concurrent criminal and care proceedings and public interest immunity issues
- Children cases with an international element including child abduction
Sorrel believes in an empathetic approach to all clients, particularly parents, tempered with firm practical advice. She is a strong believer in team work and welcomes early involvement in cases.
Recent Notable Cases
A Local Authority v A & B & C & D  EWHC 231 (Fam)
Care proceedings. Failure to follow guidance issued by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health left serious evidential gaps in the courts’ ability to assess the likelihood of sexual abuse in a pre-pubertal child. Need for the medical profession to follow the Guidance, in all but the most exceptional cases, re-stated.
LB Richmond v B & W & B & CB  EWHC 2903 (Fam). Reported at  1 FCR 401
Care proceedings. Issue was the extent to which hair strand testing was a valid or reliable means of establishing whether a parent has consumed alcohol and, if so, to what extent. The Court analysed the science in detail and emphasised the need for the exercise of considerable caution in the interpretation of the results and the reliance placed on them.
A Local Authority v S  EWHC 2115 (Fam). Reported at (2010) 1 FLR 1560
Case concerned expert evidence surrounding allegations of baby-shaking. Judgment found factual errors and prejudice in the evidence provided by experts.