A Christmas Message
Family lawyers must be miserable
Some people think that family lawyers must be miserable. They deal with some very unhappy people and situations and cannot possibly have a happy Christmas.
The truth is that many people including, for example, doctors, undertakers, prison officers, police and fire officers, social workers and military personnel all have to cope with difficult and sometimes tragic circumstances as part of their daily working lives. Those working in emotional situations with people who are often distressed, sad, worried and sometimes angry have to develop a coping strategy.
The professional and personal pleasure and satisfaction comes from providing help in a caring and efficient manner and seeing people find happiness again after difficult times.
The real emotional reward for a family lawyer comes from seeing someone who has felt desperate and in a seemingly insoluble situation, emerge with a smile and a feeling that a new life beckons.
Children can make us all smile
In no part of the work of a family lawyer is this more obvious than it that involving children
Take the example of a child who has been ill-treated and has had to be removed from the natural parents. If there is no realistic hope that the parents will be able to care for the child in the future, as, sadly, is often the case, the best solution for that child might well be to be placed for adoption. Whatever future is decided on for that child, it is the one which is best for the child.
We often act for parents who go through the process of adopting a child. Understandably, it is rigorous with detailed background checks and assessments as to the suitability of the proposed adoptive parents for the child and vice versa. If the match is good, the day will come when the application for the adoption will come to court: if that happens, then the adoption order is usually made. A successful adoption hearing in court is a happy occasion.
That is an outcome which gives great professional satisfaction to our lawyer dealing with the case. A child who has had a terrible start to life has been given another chance.
What shall we do about the children?
In other, non-adoptive situations concerning children, solutions can invariably be found with happy outcomes.
When parents separate, they are sometimes unable to agree the arrangements for the children. Typically, the issues which such parents sometimes find difficult and where we can become involved include
where the children are to live
how much time they are to spend with each parent
where they are to go to school
what financial arrangements are to made for accommodation and care costs
should the children be taken to live abroad
whether the names of the children are to change.
Our approach is always to try to find common ground and an amicable solution. If that is not possible, then the problem may have to be taken to court. When this happens, as always with children, it is their best interests which are paramount.
In these and many other cases, finding a solution which suits the children is immensely satisfying for the lawyer.
The maelstrom of life
There are so many personal situations with which family lawyers have to deal, too many to list. People find an extraordinary range of ways in which to get themselves into difficulty.
Each presents its own problems and the challenge for the family lawyer is to find and implement a solution. It is achieving that solution which enables us to feel that taking the client, professionally speaking, through that process, provides the job satisfaction.
People are the beating heart of the work of family lawyers
Family lawyers, by definition, deal with people. It is impossible to be a good family lawyer without an interest in and understanding of the human condition.
We appreciate that not everyone is likeable. Our work brings us into contact with so many different characters, some with attributes and others with faults and most, like the rest of us, who have both.
Our policy is always to be entirely straightforward with our clients. We will not shrink from advising whether the case of a client is good or bad. Clients often thank us for advising them not to pursue a course of action which had no chance of succeeding.
Happy Christmas and and a peaceful New Year to all.
Of course, it is the reaction of our clients which is the ultimate test. It would be unrealistic to claim that every single client feels satisfied: life just does not work that way. We are, however, able to assure our clients that we always do the very best we can for their cause.
Without our clients, we could not do the job for which we are trained. You may have been a client in the past or you may become one in the future. You may have been through bad times or are still there, or you may have been able to put those times behind you.
Whatever your situation, our family law team wish all our clients
A VERY HAPPY CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR
For more information or some preliminary, confidential advice, please contact one of our experienced experts in our family team by e-mail or telephone.
Rosie Bracher: Specialist Family Law Solicitors 01271 314904