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Ed Elliott is a specialist in all areas of family law. Applying an extensive knowledge of the law and a strong work ethic, he strives to obtain the best outcome for clients in each and every case.

With an eye for detail, particularly in complex cases, Ed endeavours to offer robust, practical and remedy-based advice and representation. He is never afraid to tell hard truths to clients but always willing to fight their corner in court, no matter how challenging that task might be.

Ed is qualified to accept instructions directly from members of the public under the Public Access Rules and has trained as a mediator. He also represents clients for the Bar Pro Bono Unit.

For the first seven years of his career, Ed had a mixed practice involving crime, housing (landlord and tenant) and personal bankruptcy in addition to family work. At a time when the Bar is becoming increasingly specialised, Ed has tried to use this experience and maintain a working knowledge of as many areas of law as possible. Whilst clients want expert advice and representation, their problems do not always neatly fit into a particular legal pigeonhole.

Any care practitioner is likely to find a working knowledge of criminal, housing and immigration law of use as enabling clients to understand, address and overcome those problems will lead to a better outcome in a family dispute. Likewise, any matrimonial finance practitioner needs to understand welfare benefits, tax and insolvency. Reaching acceptable and sustainable solutions in ancillary relief cases involving limited assets is all about understanding what is possible in practical terms.

Children Law

Overview

Care proceedings

Ed acts for all parties in care proceedings, believing that the best advocates need to understand cases from all perspectives. He has frequently dealt with cases involving serious allegations of inflicted injuries from fractures to head injuries to sexual abuse.

Private law matters

Ed has fifteen years' experience of private law matters. He is an experienced negotiator, seeking to resolve cases where possible as the best solutions come from the parents rather than being imposed by the court. Equally, he is a tenacious and determined advocate and has been involved in intractable contact disputes and cases involving allegations of violence, abuse and, on occasion, factitious illness.

Notable Cases

Re SE Family Division [July 2018]: Application for a deprivation of liberty order

Medway Council v Root (1) [2017] EWHC 3791 (Fam) (17 July 2017)

Medway Council v Root (2) [2017] EWHC 3793 (Fam) (18 July 2017)

Medway Council v Root (3) [2017] EWHC 3794 (Fam) (30 August 2017)

Medway Council v Root (4) [2018] EWHC 1298 (Fam) (15 March 2018)

Medway Council v Root (5) [2018] EWHC 1299 (Fam) (11 May 2018)
Proceedings involving injunctions and committal proceedings under section 12 of the Administration of Justice Act 1960 (confidentiality)

A, Re (Wardship: 17 year old: s.20 accommodation) [2018] EWHC 1121 (Fam) (07 March 2018): Care proceedings representing the child separately from his Guardian which considered in what circumstances it was appropriate to make 17 year olds wards of court in the absence of a power to make a care order.

A local authority v AG and others: Guildford Family Court [May to August 2016]: Care proceedings representing the mother where a local authority was seeking to investigate injuries to twins where medical evidence was consistent with accidental causes. An application for independent assessment was successfully resisted and proceedings withdrawn following a parenting assessment.

A local authority v HR and others: West London Family Court [May to December 2015]: Representing a father accused of historic sexual abuse of a child outside of the family. The case involved a detailed consideration of social media records and previous criminal proceedings along with issues of witness interference and professional conduct.

London Borough of Lambeth v Z & Ors: [2015] EWFC B9: Representing a father on a ten-day fact-finding hearing where a baby was suspected of suffering a shaking or a shaken impact injury.

R v SR: Family Division [July 2014]: Three-day final hearing involving a dispute over the residence of twins where in the interim one child had resided with each parent. Historically there had been proceedings with national publicity where the mother had refused potentially lifesaving medical treatment for one of the twins that had led to them being separated.

MW v Hertfordshire County Council: [2014] EWCA Civ 405: Joint appeal by the local authority and the father against the making of Special Guardianship Orders to the maternal aunt and uncle, resident in Poland. The local authority, father and Guardian had all sought for the children to remain in long-term foster care in England. The Court held that case law did not create a rule that "family trumps all" but that family ties must be considered as part of the child's "background and ... characteristics".

The Court also considered the role and status of the Children's Guardian; they are required to advise the court but in doing so become a witness, subject to the same judicial scrutiny as any other witness. The case was also noteworthy for the fact that it began when the father murdered the mother.

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Divorce and Family Finances

Overview

Matrimonial Finance

Ed was a founder member of the Financial Remedies Team on joining Garden Court Chambers in 2012 and its head until 2016. He undertakes all areas of matrimonial finance work including applications under the Trusts of Land Act and Schedule 1 of the Children Act 1989, applications for relief following foreign divorce and proceedings in the Child Support Appeals Tribunal.

He represents clients in complex, high net-worth cases involving other areas of law such as mortgage repossession and bankruptcy. He has also been asked to prepare expert reports in Confiscation Proceedings in the Crown Court.

Notable Cases

TM v TM [July 2018]: Complex financial remedies proceedings involving arguments over the validity of a separation agreement, where it was possible to notionally add back assets wantonly dissipated by one party in a needs case and the valuation of a business with a negative balance sheet solely because of directors loans owed to the husband, the sole shareholder and director.

FJ v LH [May 2018]: Application to reopen a financial remedies final order on the basis of material non-disclosure when the wife remarried 8 weeks after the final order.

TH v FH and others [2017 - 2018] Guildford Family Court: Ongoing matrimonial finance proceedings involving eight properties, three interveners and arguments about whether signatures of trust deeds were obtained by undue influence and whether those trusts were in a fact a sham.

FZ v SR: East London Family Court [December 2014 - March 2016]:A complex Trusts of Land and Schedule 1 matter involving arguments about foreign property, school fees and proprietary estoppel which lasted seven days.

RS v MS: Stoke County Court [October 2014]: Multi-day final hearing following a long marriage with significant assets in Syria and issues surrounding the dissipation of assets. The wife was much younger than her retired ex-husband. It was necessary to secure a periodical payments order now but a pension sharing order later, as the husband was almost certain to pre-decease her.

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Background

Prior to practice at the Bar, Ed worked in Parliament for Ross Cranston, MP for Dudley North and Martin Linton MP for Battersea. In his spare time Ed is a member of Battersea band Clause IV and a tortured supporter of Arsenal FC.

Training and Seminars

Ed has taught civil evidence and litigation and has set exam papers for Higher Rights candidates at the BPP Law School. He has also taught Bar Vocational students at the College of Law and City Law School.

Ed presented the Matrimonial Finance Update for the Solicitors Group Conference in March 2016.

Ed has delivered presentations at the Financial Remedies Team Annual Seminar for the past three years on:

  • Reopening final orders after Sharland & Gohil (October 2016)
  • Child Support Law (October 2017)
  • The Top Ten New Cases for 2017 -2018 (May 2018)

Education

  • LLB (Hons)
  • AKC (Kings College London)

Professional Membership

  • Family Law Bar Association
  • Society of Labour Lawyers

 

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