Lorna Cservenka joins Garden Court Family Team as new tenant

Monday 9 August 2021

Garden Court Chambers is delighted to welcome Lorna Cservenka to the Garden Court Chambers Family Team. Lorna is an outstanding family advocate. Called to the Bar in 2021, Lorna was a solicitor for 23 years before joining the Bar.

She specialises in public and private family law cases involving substantial allegations of abuse. In 2011 Lorna won the prestigious Legal Aid Practitioner’s Group Family Law Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year award.

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Lorna handles children proceedings particularly complex care proceedings with a significant proportion of her work coming from Children’s Guardians or parents accused by social services of abuse.

Lorna was a solicitor for 23 years before joining the Bar. She specialised in family law and particularly public family law cases and private law cases involving substantial allegations of abuse. Lorna was an accredited Law Society Children Panel solicitor, an accreditation that recognised her skill in representing children and young people.

In 2011 Lorna won the prestigious Legal Aid Practitioner’s Group Family Law Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year award. The award was given in recognition of her work representing the mother in care proceedings involving the first challenge to alcohol hair strand testing evidence. The case set the guidelines for how hair strand tests should be conducted. Lorna has conducted her own advocacy throughout her career.

In 2010, Lorna appeared on the BBC London region news programme, interviewed by Padraig O’Brien, in relation to the issues about alcohol hair strand testing that arose in the Richmond case. The accompanying article appears here.

In 2015, Lorna appeared on the Sky News breakfast show live broadcast to discuss proposals to introduce a “Cinderella law” making emotional abuse of children a criminal offence.

Lorna is experienced in representing Children’s Guardian’s, separately representing children, parents, and other family members in public law family cases involving the following issues:

  • Alcohol and drug abuse, including proceedings in the FDAC courts
  • Hair strand testing and toxicology disputes
  • Domestic abuse
  • Non-accidental injury and physical abuse
  • Factitious and induced illness
  • Sexual abuse
  • Emotional abuse and neglect
  • Physical chastisement
  • Care proceedings where there is an international element including whether proceedings should be transferred to other jurisdictions
  • Applications for placement orders
  • Applications for secure accommodation orders and deprivation of liberty (DOLS) orders
  • Applications for emergency protection orders
  • Applications for discharge of care orders
  • Applications for contact with children in care

Lorna regularly represents vulnerable clients who have a learning disability, mental health issues and substance misuse issues. She is also experienced in representing clients seeking to be joined as a party to care proceedings seeking child arrangements orders, special guardianship orders, or adoption orders.

Lorna also has experience representing children via their Children’s Guardian under r16.4 Children Act 1989, in private family law cases, in fact-finding hearings and contested final hearings. She is experienced in special guardianship and adoption applications.

Lorna is instructed in private law children cases involving contact and residence applications including fact-finding hearings and contested final hearings where there are serious allegations of physical, sexual abuse or domestic abuse, parental alienation and cases involving applications to remove children permanently from the UK

Lorna is instructed in applications for non-molestation orders and occupation orders in cases involving serious physical and psychological harm and coercive control. She also has experience in cases involving Female Genital Mutilation Protection Orders.

We are thrilled to welcome Lorna to the Garden Court Chambers Family Team.

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