2008 Lincoln's Inn
Stephanie originally read English and Spanish at university which included spending a year studying in Granada to become fluent in Spanish before going on to do the Graduate Diploma in Law and the Bar Vocational Course.
Stephanie's interest has always been family law and before joining Chambers she worked at a number of local organisations including a mediation service, women's refuge and a contact centre giving her a good grounding in the sorts of issues that frequently arise in family proceedings.
Stephanie then undertook a specialist family pupillage with Samantha Bowcock and Jacqui Wall and quickly established a busy practice in all areas of family law.
Stephanie now regularly accepts instructions to act for local authorities, parents, extended family members and children in a wide range of public law cases and cases under the Adoption Act, private law cases including complex and intractable contact disputes and injunctions.
Stephanie has experience in acting for parents with learning disabilities and mental health difficulties both directly and through the Official Solicitor.
Stephanie appears at all levels up to and including the High Court, dealing with cases at all stages including regularly conducting finding of fact and final hearings.
Stephanie also regularly delivers seminars and training events to local authorities and private solicitors.
Stephanie was the winner of the 2009 Bracewell Essay Prize and the article, "Openness in Family Justice ‐ Where Should the Balance Fall?" was published in the FLBA's publication, Family Affairs.
Stephanie has been involved in recent cases involving serious physical, emotional and sexual abuse, including historic allegations and issues of whether a child should give evidence, issues of forced marriage protection and a case involving an application to change a child's surname to an anonymous surname not to be disclosed to the other parent.
In a recent case where Stephanie acted for the local authority in a 5-day final hearing, the following was said about Stephanie by her instructing solicitor:
"The social worker cannot speak highly enough of this junior barrister who has taken over my case at the last minute. She is "top drawer."
In a recent case Stephanie acted for the Applicant, a minor who was subject to detention under s.3 of the Mental Health Act 1983 and who was seeking contact with her siblings. In addition to the question of contact, a central issue in the case was the Local Authority's decision-making in respect of the Applicant, on whose behalf findings were sought (and made) against the Local Authority, in particular with regards to the issue of her looked-after status. The judgment is reported on BAILII and can be accessed here: Re T (Children)
Stephanie prepared one of two skeleton arguments in relation to when a child is "placed" for adoption with concurrent carers and the impact of this on when an application for an adoption order can be made, which was subsequently adopted by the Court in its judgment which can be accessed here: Re B (A child :adoption) 2015 http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWFC/OJ/2015/B182.html
Stephanie has recently appeared on behalf of a parent seeking to invoke the inherent jurisdiction in relation to the forename to be given to a child who was the subject of an interim care order but who remained unnamed following their birth by reason of their mother's complex mental health difficulties.