Criteria for the Family Law Awards

Clerking Team of the Year
Cornwell Award for Outstanding Contribution to Family Law - Sponsored by 4PB
Family Law Associate Solicitor of the Year - Sponsored by 1 Garden Court
Family Law Chambers of the Year
   - London 
   - Regional 
Family Law Chartered Legal Executive or Paralegal of the Year 
Family Law Commentator of the Year - Sponsored by 1 Crown Office Row
Family Law Firm of the Year, divided into five separate regional categories:
   - London - Sponsored by Brewin Dolphin
   - Midlands - Sponsored by Goldsmith Chambers
   - North
   - South - Sponsored by DNA Legal
   - Wales
Family Law Junior Barrister of the Year
Family Law Partner of the Year - Sponsored by Smith & Williamson
Family Law Pro Bono Lawyer of the Year
Family Law QC of the Year
Family Law Young Barrister of the Year
Family Law Young Solicitor of the Year - Sponsored by Harcourt Chambers
International Family Lawyer of the Year

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Clerking Team of the Year - Voted for online by the family law community

The barristers' clerking team that has demonstrated that it has provided an outstanding quality of legal service in the family law field and also displayed high levels of teamwork.

Cornwell Award for Outstanding Contribution to Family Law - Decided by the judging panel

This award was renamed in honour of John Cornwell who won the award in 2012 before he died in February 2013. He dedicated his working life to the development and progress of family law. In 1982 he founded the Solicitors' Family Law Association (now Resolution), drafting a code of conduct that has guided family law solicitors to practice to the highest standards.

The award recognises an individual who has made a major contribution to the field of family law, either through practice, commentary, teaching, pro bono and/or judicially.

Family Law Associate Solicitor of the Year - Decided by the judging panel

A solicitor with over 5 years post qualification experience who the judges believe has made a major contribution to the field of family law through their practice, shown that they have provided outstanding client service and demonstrated teamwork within their firm, with external lawyers and/or other professionals.

Family Law Chambers (London) of the Year - Decided by the judging panel

The set that is based in London and has clearly demonstrated it has developed the field of family law by consistently performing at the higher court levels.

Criteria which the judging panel will consider include the following:

  •  - External nominations/testimonials
  •  - Quality of legal services offered
  •  - Recent reported cases in which members of chambers have acted
  •  - Pro bono initiatives/services benefiting the local community
  •  - Range of expertise within the chambers   

Family Law Chambers (regional) of the Year - Decided by the judging panel

The set that is based outside of London and has clearly demonstrated it has developed the field of family law by consistently performing at the higher court levels.

Criteria which the judging panel will consider include the following:

  •  - External nominations/testimonials
  •  - Quality of legal services offered
  •  - Recent reported cases in which members of chambers have acted
  •  - Pro bono initiatives/services benefiting the local community
  •  - Range of expertise within the chambers

Family Law Chartered Legal Executive or Paralegal of the Year - Voted for online by the family law community

An individual who the family law community recognise as having demonstrated excellence in their role.

Family Law Commentator of the Year - Voted for online by the family law community

An award for the commentator who the family law community consider to have provided the most useful commentary to help them in their practice. The commentary could have been contained in any format including books, journal articles, videos or blogs.  

Family Law Firm of the Year (divided into five separate regional categories – London, Midlands, North, South, Wales) - Decided by the judging panel

The firm in each region that has demonstrated it has provided outstanding quality of legal service for its clients and has displayed high levels of teamwork within its firm, with external lawyers and/or other professionals. The region in which a firm sits is determined by the head office address.

Criteria which the judging panel will consider include the following:

  •  - External nominations/testimonials
  •  - Quality of legal services offered
  •  - Recent reported cases in which the firm has acted
  •  - Pro bono initiatives/services benefiting the local community
  •  - Range of expertise within the firm
  •  - Training and career progression of employees

Family Law Junior Barrister of the Year - Decided by the judging panel

A barrister of at least 5 years post call who has made a major contribution to the field of family law through their advice and high-level advocacy.

Family Law Partner of the Year - Decided by the judging panel

The individual who the judges believe has made a major contribution to the field of family law through their practice, and shown that they have executed a strategic vision through outstanding leadership.

Family Law Pro Bono Lawyer of the Year - Decided by the National Pro Bono Centre

The trustees of the National Pro Bono Centre will review nominations to determine the individual who they believe is the most worthy winner of this prize.

Criteria which the National Pro Bono Centre will consider include the following:

  •  - External nominations/testimonials
  •  - Quality of legal services offered
  •  - Recent reported cases in which the individual has acted
  •  - Pro bono initiatives/services benefiting the community

Family Law QC of the Year - Decided by the judging panel

A QC who has made a major contribution to the field of family law through their advice and high-level advocacy.

Family Law Young Barrister of the Year - Decided by the judging panel

A barrister under 5 years post call who the judges believe has stood out from their peers by demonstrating that they have the skills and knowledge to become a leading family lawyer of the future. This could be demonstrated, for example, by positive external nominations, acting in a reported case or through pro bono work.

Family Law Young Solicitor of the Year - Decided by the judging panel

A solicitor with under 5 years post qualification experience who the judges believe has stood out from their peers by demonstrating that they have the skills and knowledge to become a leading family lawyer of the future. This could be demonstrated, for example, by positive external nominations, acting in a reported case or through pro bono work.

International Family Lawyer of the Year - Decided by the judging panel

A lawyer who the judges believe has made a major contribution to the field of international family law and led the way for other practitioners to follow.