Alison Grief QC Family Law Barrister - Children Law, Direct Access

Practice Areas

Dispute Resolution

Direct Access

Direct Access

“She works exhaustively to ensure the very best result for her client. She is a specialist in non-accidental medical cases.”
Chambers & Partners 2017


Year of Call: 1990
Year of Silk: 2015


LLB (hons)


Recorder –Family Public and Private Law 2012
Previously Assistant Coroner Hertfordshire
Previously Assistant Coroner Mid-Kent and Medway



Alison has specialised in the law relating to children, Private and Public law for 20 years after a Common Law practice in Crime and housing; the former giving plenty of forensic and cross examination experience and the latter giving her considerable experience in Judicial Review practice and procedure.

Alison is regularly instructed in all aspects of Private Law children work in which she is frequently instructed in cases involving complex factual backgrounds such as: allegations of physical or sexual abuse of children, particularly where the court is considering the veracity of the child’s account, parental influence/fabrication, ABE interviews and contamination etc; mental health issues; substance misuse, allegations of domestic violence and/or coercion and control and where experts have to be cross examined or where the case has significant forensic detail. Her Public Law experience in this respect gives her a real advantage as does dealing with cases in which children are separately represented and her experience of dealing with child witnesses.  She has particular expertise in allegations of parental alienation, and is regularly instructed in international relocation cases.

In Public law, Alison is renowned for her expertise in medical cases particularly deaths involving allegations of inflicted head injury, surviving catastrophic head injuries and fractures especially with issues of Vitamin D deficiency. She regularly cross examines medical experts on their hypotheses undertaking medical research at the Institute of Child Health and challenging experts on their research base. She has undertaken joint seminars with the leading experts in the field.  This expertise has also been used to great advantage in cases involving allegations of Fabricated or Induced Illness and she has undertaken a number of such cases for all parties. Alison has sat as an Assistant Coroner which has given her additional insight and knowledge. Her cases often involve concurrent criminal proceedings and she is therefore highly experienced in issues of disclosure and PII. Press injunctions are often required given the nature of the cases and she is therefore well versed in the law and procedure relating to them and media management generally. The remainder of Alison’s Public law practice is serious sexual abuse including inter-generational and inter-sibling abuse in which she has good experience of dealing with child and other vulnerable witnesses; radicalisation cases; adoptions; Special Guardianship Orders and local authority duties towards children including Judicial Review and HRA claims for damages on behalf of children and parents.

Alison regularly provides seminars on both Private law and Public law issues and the Voice of the Child including for Resolution.

Professional Memberships

Bar Pro Bono Unit
Family Law Bar Association
Association of Lawyers for Children
Lawyers for Liberty
Co-opted member of FLBA sub-committee 2009
Family Mediation Assocation


Children law specialist who offers services in complex children cases and demonstrates noted expertise in those matters requiring expert medical evidence. She has a strong private law practice and is noted for her handling of alleged sexual abuse cases.
Strengths: “She works exhaustively to ensure the very best result for her client. She is a specialist in non-accidental medical cases.”
Chambers & Partners 2017

‘Always a first choice for any complex medical children matter; she has excellent forensic analysis.’
Legal 500, 2016

A new addition at silk this year, who shows real passion for her client’s cause. Her practice covers both public and private children law and she is highly regarded for her medical knowledge.

Strengths: “She has the ability to get straight to the heart of complex matters, particularly those involving medical issues. She is meticulous in her preparation and her attention to detail.”
Chambers & Partners 2016

Has a broad practice that encompasses complex areas of public and private law children matters, including allegations of physical, emotional and sexual abuse, the death of children and international relocations.

Expertise: “Has the ability to grasp complex medical evidence and get straight to the issues. Alison is very experienced in complex cases, particularly those involving deaths of children. She is extremely hard-working, thorough and very approachable.”
Chambers & Partners 2015

Principally focuses on public law disputes and is well versed in all areas of children matters, from deaths and non-accidental injuries to fabricated/induced illness and sexual abuse cases.

Expertise: “Absolutely phenomenal, she’s an expert in her field. She makes you feel like you are with a heavy hitter. Watching her perform in court is amazing.”
Chambers & Partners 2014

Alison Grief enters the rankings for the first time after receiving strong feedback from the market. She practises exclusively in children law, concentrating in the main on public law cases such as sexual abuse and non-accidental injury. Sources relate that “she works extraordinarily hard on her cases and goes to the nth degree in terms of detail.” One esteemed QC labelled her “a silk in the making.”
Chambers and Partners 2013

[2012] EWHC 2203 (Fam)
[2012] EWCA Civ 1278
[2009] EWHC 2115 (Fam); (2010) 1 FLR 1560
[2008] UKHL 35; (2008) 3 WLR 1 : (2008) 4 All ER 1 : (2008) 2 FLR 141 : (2009) 1 AC 11 : Times, June 12, 2008
[2007] EWHC 455 (Fam)
[2004] EWCA Civ 1181