Meet Freeths’ Family Team

Our team of specialist family lawyers advise clients on all aspects of family law. We work with each client to identify the best approach for their particular circumstances. Our team also offers alternative dispute resolution services, including mediation, collaborative law and arbitration.

As well as our expertise in financial settlements on divorce or separation, we advise on a full range of legal issues relating to children. We can also help when a couple wants to plan for their future through a pre- or post-marital agreement or a cohabitation agreement. Our team of experts is headed by Rachael Oakes, recognised by major legal directory, the Legal 500, as an elite leading family lawyer, with almost two decades of experience.

Rachael Oakes
National Head of the Family Law Team, Mediator and Collaborative Practitioner.

Rachael specialises on complex financial situations that often involve offshore assets, companies, trusts, tax, pensions and other jurisdictions. Rachael also heads the firm’s Platinum service that provides a discrete and professional service for high profile clients, keen to avoid media attention and to keep their personal affairs private.

The Platinum service is also used by entrepreneurs looking to grow their business interests.

As both, a trained Mediator and Collaborative Practitioner, Rachael also offers these Alternative Dispute Resolution practices to clients.

Claire Colbert
Partner, Mediator and Collaborative Practitioner.

Claire is described by the Legal 500 as ‘outstanding in every respect, showing consistent dedication and commitment that is both impressive and reassuring’. Claire deals with complex and high value financial disputes, involving married and unmarried couples, and cases relating to the arrangements for children.

She also has specialist expertise in handling appeals over school place decisions, disputes over child maintenance and appeals to the Child Maintenance Tribunal, and cases where one parent wishes to relocate overseas with their children.

Claire, like Rachael, is an experienced Mediator as well as a Solicitor, and works with couples to guide them through the practical and legal consequences of their separation, including the division of finances and arrangements for their children.

Gemma Nicholls-Webber
Senior Associate

Gemma is renowned for providing a pragmatic and sympathetic approach to family issues. She specialises in divorce, financial settlements, arrangements prior to living together as well as practical and financial arrangements for children.

Wherever there is a dispute, Gemma is extremely experienced in securing a resolution for clients whether through negotiation or, if necessary Court proceedings. Gemma also has extensive experience in advising on agricultural cases.

Tom Burgess

Tom advises a wide range of clients on all aspects of relationship breakdown, including divorce, dissolution of civil partnerships and financial disputes between divorcing or separating couples.

His focus is on helping couples to reach an agreement as amicably and cost-effectively as possible. However, where court proceedings are the only option, Tom has extensive experience of guiding his clients through them sensitively and proactively.

Tom frequently advises on disputes over the arrangements for children, and has a particular interest in cases where one parent wishes to relocate, either domestically or internationally. He also has specialist expertise on the law around starting or extending a family through fertility treatment, donor conception and surrogacy arrangements.

To discuss how we can help you, please do not hesitate to contact Rachael Oakes, our National Head of the Family law team.

Freeths Solicitors

Freeths are a top 50, full service commercial law firm with 13 offices spread across the UK.

Stewart Elliston

Principal BD Manager

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