“He’s fabulous. His client care is brilliant for somebody of his call and his knowledge is outstanding.”
Chambers & Partners 2018

Experience

Year of Call: 2010

Education

University of Bristol, History (BA Hons) (First Class, placed first in year overall)
City University, GDL (Distinction)
BPP Law School, BVC (Very Competent)
Exhibition Award and Poland Prize (Inner Temple)

Profile

Michael is a specialist in international children law, particularly child abduction, leave to remove and jurisdictional disputes. He regularly appears in the High Court and has appeared in the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.

He appears regularly in private law cases involving allegations of sexual abuse and parental alienation.

Michael also acts in inquests and inquiries, including:

  • The investigation by IICSA into sexual abuse allegations against Lord Janner
  • The inquest into the death of Ellie Butler.

In February 2016, Michael was appointed to the Attorney General’s C Panel of Junior Counsel to the Crown. He is the only family practitioner to be appointed to the C Panel.

In January 2018, Michael was appointed as a Special Advocate.


International

Michael has appeared as junior counsel in a number of international cases in the Supreme Court, including:

    • Re KL (A Child) [2013] [2013] UKSC 75
    • Re J (A Child) [2015] UKSC 70
    • Re B (A Child) [2016] UKSC 4
    • Re N (Children) [2016] UKSC 15 [2016] 1 FLR 170

    And in the Court of Appeal:

    • Re LC (Children) [2013] EWCA Civ 1058
    • Re KP (A Child) [2014] EWCA Civ 554

    He appears on a daily basis in the High Court. He successfully represented the father in an application to take his children to Jordan against the mother’s objections in AB v TB (Temporary Removal to Jordan) [2014] EWHC 4663 (Fam), and appeared in ‘stranded spouse’ proceedings in NN v ZZ & Ors [2013] [2013] EWHC 2261 (Fam).

    Inquests / Inquiries / Child protection

    Michael has appeared in a number of high profile inquests and inquiries, including:

    • IICSA – representing a local authority with Alex Verdan QC in the investigation into allegations against Lord Janner
    • Ellie Butler – representing the local authority with Alex Verdan QC following the death of Ellie Butler. The case generated significant media interest

    He has also appeared in a number of long-running child protection cases involving the death of a child.

    • Re A (Death of a Baby) [2011] EWHC 2754 (Fam) (with Alison Grief QC)
    • A Local Authority v DB & Others [2013] [2013] EWHC 4066 (Fam) (with Alison Grief QC)

    Michael has particular expertise in care proceedings with an international element, particularly Article 15 transfers, habitual residence disputes and placements abroad under Article 56 (BIIa).

    Private law

    Michael represents parents and children in disputes about children’s upbringing, especially international and internal relocation cases. He has appeared in a number of ‘intractable hostility’ cases and where one parent has made allegations of violence and sexual abuse against the other.

    Sports law

    Michael has expertise in child protection in sport. He holds BASL post-graduate certificate in sports law from the British Association for Sport and Law (BASL) and lectures in child protection on the BASL course.

    Other experience

    In 2014, Michael was awarded a Pegasus Scholarship from the Inner Temple to work in Sarajevo, Bosnia, for a human rights charity, TRIAL. He spent three months working on war crimes trials with a particular focus on sexual violence cases. He continues to assist TRIAL from London.

    Michael previously worked in the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague.

    Michael represented the Bar of England and Wales in the Lawyers’ Cricket World Cup in Delhi in October 2013.

Professional Memberships

Family Law Bar Association
Inner Temple
Resolution (Affiliate Member)

Directories

Children law junior with a growing international practice, who has handled a number of highly complex abduction cases in the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. His practice spans a broad range of private and public law proceedings involving international issues.
Strengths: “A very persuasive advocate. He has an enormous breadth of experience for a barrister of his seniority, and puts that experience to extremely good use in a number of different cases.”
Recent work: Led by Alex Verdan QC for the London Borough of Sutton in the widely publicised inquest into the death of Ellie Butler.
Chambers & Partners 2019

‘A walking encyclopaedia.’
Legal 500, 2019

 


Children law junior with a growing international practice, who has handled a number of highly complex abduction cases in the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. His practice spans a broad range of private and public law proceedings involving international issues.
Strengths: “He’s fabulous. His client care is brilliant for somebody of his call and his knowledge is outstanding.”
Recent work: Led by Alex Verdan QC in an independent inquiry into child sexual abuse on behalf of Leicestershire. The matters centred on allegations made against Lord Janner relating to care homes in Leicestershire in the 1970s.
Chambers & Partners 2018

Children law junior with a growing practice, who has handled a number of highly complex abduction cases in the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. His public law practice consists of the most sensitive and severe cases concerning matters such as infant death and abuse.
Strengths:  “A rising star with a packed diary of complicated children cases. He’s a bright, well prepared and thoughtful advocate.”
Chambers & Partners 2017

Draws glowing reports from peers, who regard him as someone with “a bright future.” He has a broad-based practice that takes in private and public children law proceedings, including those with an international element.

Strengths: “It is unusual for such a young advocate to be instructed in cases so complex. He is instructed because he can be trusted, has a very strong intellect, and has a capacity for compassion.”
Chambers & Partners 2016

10/05/18
[2018] EWCA Civ 1372
26/07/13
[2013] EWHC 2261 (Fam)
13/10/11
[2012] 2 FCR 325; [2011] EWCA Civ 1774
14/07/11
[2011] EWCA Civ 1230