Joe Davis and Sarah Moulange acted for a client accused of arson, following a fire to the house her and her daughter were sleeping in. The prosecution instructed a fire expert, who concluded that only our client could have set the fire from inside the locked house, indicating that it could only have been deliberate ignition. Our client was at risk of losing her child and serving a lengthy prison sentence if found guilty of starting the fire, which caused thousands of pounds worth of damage. The evidence against her was strong, however together with Emma Reed of 33 Bedford Row, they managed to demonstrate that there were numerous potential causes of the fire, casting a very reasonable doubt on the likelihood that our client deliberately caused the fire. Our client was vocal about her innocence from the outset and was eventually acquitted after a five day trial in the Crown Court. Please feel free to contact us in complete confidence should you wish to discuss any new matter or case with one of the specialist criminal defence solicitors. Whatever the time of day or night, members of our expert and dedicated team will respond to urgent calls for assistance. [...]
We are delighted to announce that we have launched a new Care Department, based in our St Paul’s office in London. The aim of the department is to further enhance the range of legal support the firm can offer to its ever increasing clientele. Led by Sheena Donlon, the department will focus on representing clients in the South of England.
Sheena has considerable experience in advocacy at the Family Proceedings Court, County Court and High Court and has represented parents, family members and children in public law proceedings (including Emergency Protection Orders, Care Orders, Supervision Orders and Secure Accommodation orders. She’s an accredited member of the Law Society’s Children Panel since 2014 which allows her to represent children in highly complex matters, involving Local Authority Care and Supervision Proceedings.
She also represents clients in private law matters involving Child Arrangements, Special Guardianship and Parental Responsibility applications.
Having recently doubled its staff count in Birmingham, Kent & Coventry, the establishment of the new team is part of the firm’s strategy to expand its specialist offering to other areas of law.
Head of Family, Kirsty Richards, welcomed Sheena, commenting:
The aim of the new department is to focus on the care work already being undertaken by our specialist solicitors in our various branches, by specifically having a dedicated team dealing exclusively with public children law work. NLS is keen to establish a stronghold in London and the surrounding areas in respect of this type of work and with Sheena’s leadership, the team will develop in the coming months to achieve that goal.
Congratulations to Thakmina Begum, one of our Supervising Solicitors within the London Family Law team who has been awarded the Law Society’s Children Law Panel Accreditation.
The Children Law Accreditation provides a recognised quality standard for practitioners representing children in child law proceedings. The accreditation shows awareness, knowledge and expertise in this area of law.
Thakmina had to undergo rigorous evaluation to achieve the accreditation. Only experienced practitioners with Children Law Panel Accreditation can represent children in the Family Court either in conjunction with a Court appointed Children’s Guardian or upon independent instructions.
Kirsty Richards, Head of Family commented on Thakmina’s achievement
It’s a wonderful recognition and a great boost for the department and the new care team we are building. I’m extremely happy that Thakmina has been recognised as a specialist care solicitor and look forward to watching her career develop further with the firm
Situations involving children can be difficult and sensitive. Our experienced team are here to provide support and guidance in order to achieve the very best outcome for you and your family. Call us on 0203 6015051 to speak to our specialist Child Panel solicitors.
We are pleased to share that Nadia Butt from the National Legal Service Solicitors Birmingham office has been awarded the Family Law Advanced Accreditation from The Law Society, specialising in Children Private Law and Violence in the Home.
For Nadia to have achieved the Family Law Advanced Accreditation she had to demonstrate that she has and will maintain the required level of competence and knowledge, as defined by the Law Society in her chosen specialist areas of Family Law.
Nadia’s achievement demonstrates her skill set and expertise and we are delighted to see her achieve that recognition at National Legal Service Solicitors.
Nadia Butt said:
Achieving this accreditation was important to me as it furthers my aim to provide the highest quality of legal services to my clients; demonstrating our devotion to their circumstances, which can often be a challenging time for them. From a personal perspective, I wanted to be an expert in my field and highlight my commitment to Family Law.
Kirsty Richards, Head of Family, said:
I am delighted for Nadia’s achievement in respect of her Law Society Family Law Advanced Accreditation. She has worked hard to receive that recognition and mark of excellence. It has been a celebrated moment for all at NLS but especially for the team at our Birmingham Branch that work with Nadia on a daily basis. It is so lovely to see everyone cheer her success and I look forward to the next stages of her career development with us.
Currently I am a Supervising Solicitor for Guildford and Southampton at NLS. I started at NLS at a time when I was looking for growth and recognition. NLS is known for investing in its staff and ensuring job satisfaction. I wasn’t wrong and I haven’t looked back since!
I was always very interested in sociology and family dynamics, as our perceptions as a society changed and we realised that a nuclear family isn’t always the right fit for everyone. I was fascinated by families that change and reshape themselves for a happier life. Law has always been an extremely exciting and dynamic industry so combining both was always going to be an organic outcome for me.
I specialise in a range of areas within family law, such as: Divorce. Childcare. Private and Public Law Children. Financial Relief. Domestic Abuse.
I feel that at the core of my personal policies I place the most vulnerable in the dynamic who are the children. If you are pursuing the best outcome for the most vulnerable in any given situation you will always be in a winning position. Apart from this I think the key strength for any lawyer is research, always be prepared and organised.
My accreditation for Family Law. I only qualified short while ago, however it is such an honour and so rare to acquire panel membership in such a short time that I am immensely proud of this achievement. It is a demonstrable reward of all my hard work and recognition of knowledge and experience.
NLS is vastly different to any other firm that I’ve worked for because of its staff. It is a forward thinking dynamic employer. NLS has made diversity its strength, we have a large cohort of female and BAME lawyers we are proud of and every single person brings something special to the table. We value a hard work ethic and we recruit team players. The quality of my peers is definitely what sets us apart.
My favourite part of the job is knowing that in a small way I can make a difference for the better to people’s lives. That I can ensure the safety and security of people who sometimes haven’t had that in a long while. My clients and their needs are paramount, I don’t view my clients as cases to win or lose but as people to ‘secure’. ‘securing’ safety, happiness, peace of mind, basic human rights are the most satisfying part of my job. The most challenging part of my job is definitely the billing aspect, I am better with words than numbers!
I volunteer for the Citizens Advice Bureau and East Surrey Domestic Abuse Services, both are extremely rewarding opportunities to give back to your community. I also volunteer at the homeless shelter opposite Grays Inn in London on Sundays. The ‘guests’ who visit for a warm meal and someone to talk to are always a pleasure to speak to and learn from and the coffee is always very good!
In my spare time I enjoy travelling, learning and living new cultures, I love to come out of my comfort zone and travel to places a little off the beaten track and live a life that’s teaches you something different. My favourite so far has been living in a Berber village. I think for our own personal growth and to evolve, it is important to see things from perspectives other than your own. I think it was Foucault who said that if I feel the same way about something in 10 years then I have failed to evolve.
My current role is supervising a team of caseworkers, paralegal and a solicitor in our Birmingham office. I was previously working for a national law firm managing the Milton Keynes branch as well as supporting the Luton and Cardiff offices as a Director of the Family Law. I ultimately joined NLS, six months after my initial contact with them– I felt it was a natural progression for my career and me as a person. I accepted an offer to join and moved back to Birmingham to help launch & staff our Birmingham office.
My very first responsibility was to support a senior partner in childcare cases. I realised family law was my strength as I was helping the court make decisions for children – some of the most vulnerable in our society – and helping people in difficult family related situations.
I took on a family law caseload whilst still a paralegal and trained in the area. Now, I look back and feel it was the best decision and I am learning new things every day.
I specialise in private family disputes between families/couples in respect of children, divorce, matrimonial finances and domestic abuse protection. I also specialise in childcare law assisting parents and accredited by the Law Society to represent children and their interests involved in court proceedings including removal from their parents, supervision by the local authority and being placed in secure accommodation.
I particularly enjoy being in court- I believe I am an effective advocate in court and able to absorb large amounts of important information quickly and submit the key points to a court succinctly.
I am accused of being a perfectionist when it comes to content and presentation of court documents; I feel I am able to work well with vulnerable clients assisting the court in understanding their needs.
Challenging a local authority about the unfair and arbitrary way they had been treating my client over a month. This meant applying to court and waiting a further month before being able to bring the local authority to task about their behaviour. Once in court my actions asking for an urgent hearing were vindicated with the lack of care for my client being admitted by the local authority.
NLS is a firm focussed on client care- we deal with large volumes of vulnerable people whom need our help and help from the court.
We help our clients achieve what they need to safely live their lives without fear. To do this, we monitor every client very carefully ensuring discussions take place and court orders are secured where available within several days of first contact with a client.
Solicitors and caseworkers are directly available for clients to speak to, our teams are trained to high standards with direct support to empower them to work their best for the benefit of our clients.
My favourite element of my work is achieving a positive outcome for my client allowing them to walk away from court having achieved what they sought or needed for a safe, peaceful life or to ensure any children involved are safe & happy.
I am a volunteer for the University of Law and Birmingham City University as a mentor for students seeking help, guidance & support with entering the legal sector and working life.
When not at work, I enjoy spending time with my wife & sons, reading, cooking and keeping fit.
National Legal Service Solicitors is pleased to announce the appointment of two new Trainee Solicitors who will soon commence their 2 year training contracts.
Selected following a rigorous assessment process, the chosen two were among 8 internal applicants employed as Paralegals within our 19 branch offices.
Paul Scripps and Gurveet Kular, from our London and Birmingham offices, will provide legal advice and services to NLS’s clients across the country. NLS currently provides training seats within Family, Care, Crime and Extradition. We are now looking to develop secondment relationships with other firms which will enable us to provide an even wider variety of seats within other areas of law.
Kate Probert, Head of HR said:
We are delighted to appoint our second intake of Trainee Solicitors after what has been an exhaustive selection process. As a business, we choose to appoint Trainees from our existing team rather than recruiting externally. This allows us to reward the dedication and hard work of our staff and continually develop our teams. They are our Solicitors and Supervisors of the future. It is always disappointing for those who are not successful in their application but we now work to support them ready for the next round of applications later this year. I look forward to seeing all of our Trainees progress their careers with NLS.
Kirsty Richards, Training Principal & Head Of Family said:
It’s always a pleasure to reward hardworking and committed paralegals with the opportunity to further their legal career by becoming a Trainee Solicitor at NLS. Despite only being into a year of business, we have just awarded our 5th Training Contract and we are confident that will allow NLS to continue on it’s trajectory of growth and success. Well done to the successful applicants.
National Legal Service Solicitors is pleased to announce two internal senior promotions to support its plans for growth.
We celebrate the promotions of Fatimah Iqbal & Gita Duggal to Supervising Solicitors with effect from 1st April 2019. In recognition of their hard work & dedication, the firm supported them in completing their Family Law Panel Accreditation.
Fatimah based in our Guildford office specialises in Divorce, Financial Remedy, Private Law Children, Domestic Abuse, Public Law and Probate. Fatimah qualified in England and Wales in 2017 and subsequently joined a boutique practice in North London.
Gita Duggal spearheads the Luton office and is known in local community groups. Gita qualified in 2011 and has significant experience in dealing with a private caseload consisting of divorce, financial and children matters.
Kirsty Richards, Head of Family at NLS commented “It is great to be able to announce the promotion of these esteemed solicitors to supervisors. We believe in nurturing and developing talent and these well-deserved promotions are evidence to that commitment”
National Legal Service Solicitors have offices across 19 locations including Birmingham, Manchester, Luton, Wolverhampton, Coventry & Bristol. To view our current vacancies, please click here