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26 FEB 2010

Six family law barristers appointed as QCs

The fourth round of appointments as Queen's Counsel was announced today. Of the 129 successful applicants, six are family law barristers including the Co-Chair of the Association of Lawyers for Children and Family Law author Piers Pressdee of Harcourt Chambers.

The other five family law barristers are: Patrick Chamberlayne (29 Bedford Row); Jane Cross (Deans Court Chambers); Frank Feehan (42 Bedford Row); Sally Harrison (St Johns Buildings), and; Robert Peel (29 Bedford Row).

Professor Dame Joan Higgins, Chair of the QC Selection Panel, said: "I have great pleasure at the announcement of these 129 names. I warmly congratulate all those whose appointment has been announced today. It is encouraging to see such a wide variety of advocates among the new appointments.

"The Selection Panel believes that the quality of applications this year was higher than ever. Nevertheless, inevitably, some applicants have had to be disappointed. The standard for appointment is very high. Even if an advocate has not been appointed on this occasion it does not mean that he or she is not a valued and effective practitioner."

The Law Society has expressed their dismay as only one of the QC appointees is a solicitor advocate, Eversheds planning partner Marcus Trinick. Law Society Chief Executive, Desmond Hudson, said: "The society is disappointed that the QCA has failed to broaden the scheme rules to recognise that excellence is more than merely oral advocacy in the higher courts. It's not just solicitors but also employed barristers who are not getting through. The way in which QC appointments are being dealt with still appears to place certain categories of candidate at a disadvantage."

For a full list of 2010 QC appointments click here.

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