Today we’re chatting to Emma Beddoe from our Garforth branch to find out more about her role at Ison Harrison.

Emma joined Ison Harrison in 2004 and is a trained collaborative lawyer specialising in divorce, children and care work.

Hi Emma, can you tell us your path to law?

I did an O Level Law Course during the sixth form at school and was fascinated by the subject.  This led to me doing a degree in Law at the University of Sheffield and the rest, as they say, is history.

What is the most challenging thing about your job?

Dealing with the human emotions associated with this area of law.  Family lawyers see the best and worst of human behaviour during what is one of the most stressful times of a client’s life.

What has working at home during lockdown been like?

Liberating in some respects but in others frustrating due to being remote from the office and having to adapt to a completely new way of conducting business.  Overall, however I would say that it has been a positive experience which has led me to question the need to work full-time in the office setting going forwards.

How has your area of law changed over the last few years?

There have been some subtle changes but I think the biggest change has to be the erosion of the availability of Legal Aid which has had a huge impact on the number of people who have access to legal advice.  The knock-on effect has been an inevitable negative impact on the Court system due to the increasing numbers of litigants who would previously have qualified for public funding but are now forced to go it alone and represent themselves.  Backlogs in processing applications have become the norm.

What one piece of advice would you give someone who is thinking about becoming a family solicitor?

Of all the areas of law you could choose the area of family law is one of the most diverse and rewarding.

The areas to specialise in include divorce, finances associated with divorce, cohabitation disputes, family disputes about arrangements for children, public law cases in which the Local Authority intervene in family life where they believe children are at risk of harm from their parents, forced marriage cases, domestic abuse and child abduction.

There is never a dull moment when dealing with family law matters.  However, there is a need to be pretty emotionally resilient due to the type of issues you will come across and the difficult and sometimes distressing things which you will read about especially when it comes to cases concerning bad treatment of children.

Speaking for myself, if I had my time again I would not hesitate to choose family law.

Thanks Emma!

You can find Emma Beddoe at our Garforth solicitors located at 29 Main Street, Garforth, Leeds, LS25 1DS. To contact Emma directly about a family law matter, please email emma.beddoe@isonharrison.co.uk or call 0113 286 1455.