Lucinda France-Hayhurst

Email: clerk@stjohnsbuildings.co.uk

Phone: 01244 323 070

Year of call: 2009

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Lucinda studied in Bristol and London and was called to the Bar by Gray’s Inn in 2009. She practises in all areas of Family Law and in specific aspects of Civil Law.

She has a broad experience spanning Complex Care proceedings (acting predominantly for parents), Private Law disputes, Matrimonial Finance and Cohabitation matters. Lucinda is also steadily expanding her Court of Protection practice. On the Civil side, she is regularly instructed in Credit Hire matters, acting predominantly for Claimant hire claim companies (up to multi-track level).

A capable public speaker, Lucinda has delivered lectures to large-scale CPD conferences and willingly travels to conduct seminars concerning fresh legal developments.

Lucinda was appointed Junior of the Northern Circuit in 2012 and Editor of the Northern Circuit’s legal publication In Brief in 2014.

Memberships

  • Northern Circuit
  • Family Law Bar Association
  • Court of Protection Practitioners’ Association

Solicitor Recommendations

“Lucinda is very approachable, with a calm and reassuring manner especially when explaining things to clients in often difficult and stressful circumstances.  Her level of knowledge and commitment to meeting clients’ needs are very impressive and she is concise and prompt when reporting on case outcomes”. Darren Matthews, Gregory Abrams Davidson LLP

“Miss France-Hayhurst is a first-class barrister who handles the complexities of child care cases with ease and, even with difficult timeframes, offers an excellent service. An incredibly persuasive advocate who not only has a detailed knowledge of the law but is personable and excellent with clients, Miss France-Hayhurst is always a first choice when instructing Counsel.” Lauren Ashcroft, Morecrofts LLP

Expertise

  • Family - Children

    Lucinda routinely represents parents and children in sensitive and complex Public and Private Law matters concerning children.

    Public Law

    Lucinda’s practice concerns primarily parents and children whom she represents in Care proceedings involving a range of complexities, for example:

    • Non-accidental injury
    • Sexual abuse
    • Neglect
    • Alcohol and substance misuse
    • Mental health issues in adults (including where capacity is relevant) and in children
    • Instruction of experts
    • International clients.

    In practice, she is well-versed and confident in handling expert witnesses and takes particular care over assimilating large volumes of material and extrapolating relevant information to further her client’s case. She is happy to advise on all aspects of law and case management, or to draft court documents (including grounds of appeal) if required.

    Lucinda has represented deaf clients, clients who lack capacity, clients with mental health difficulties, non-English speaking clients and clients suffering from addiction.

    Private Law

    Lucinda has a wide experience of Private Law Children matters ranging from the negotiable to the intractable. Her work has touched on the following issues in particular:

    • Child arrangements generally (and ancillary applications)
    • Domestic violence
    • Contested allegations of sexual abuse
    • Internal/external relocation and relocation to non-Hague Convention countries
    • Implacable hostility
    • Older children opposed to a course of action
    • Proceedings with a public law element.

    Lucinda has represented deaf clients, clients who lack capacity, clients with mental health difficulties, non-English speaking clients and clients suffering from addiction.

    A Local Authority v D (2013)

    Acting for mother (whose capacity was in issue) in custody for a period of six months during proceedings whilst LA sought care and placement orders in respect of the child. Upon demonstrating that M had been imprisoned on the basis of a false allegation, obtained leave to instruct an ISW who ultimately recommended return of the child to mother under a supervision order.

    A Local Authority v J (2015)

    Obtained leave at contested Final Hearing to instruct ISW for the mother in circumstances where care proceedings had exceeded 26 weeks and where LA and Children’s Guardian were opposed.

    A Local Authority v W (2013)

    Successfully argued for return of a young baby on behalf of a father, who suffered from severe mental health difficulties, where child had suffered suggested non-accidental injury.

    A Local Authority v W (2014)

    Represented grandmother throughout care proceedings in which we successfully argued against interim removal, and in which children had previously been exposed to parents’ substance misuse, domestic violence and who had displayed sexualised behaviour.

    K v S (2015)

    Represented a father, who suffered from long-term alcohol addiction, lacked capacity and whose first language was not English, in his application for CAO. Case involved regular liaison with OS.

    L v C (2015)

    A deaf mother’s application for CAO in circumstances where the father, also deaf, opposed. All communication through BSL interpreters.

    U v L (2013)

    Acting for the father in a case where the mother sought to remove the child to Pakistan for longer than one month. Both parties were non-English speakers and communicated through interpreters. Special measures researched and approved by the Court.

    A v A (2014)

    Contested hearing, representing the father, in his application to remove the child temporarily to a Non-Hague Convention country and to enjoy contact generally. Court permitted removal subject to special measures arranged by consultation with the relevant Consulate.

    V v O (2013)

    Represented the father in Private Law proceedings involving contested finding of fact hearing where the father was alleged to have perpetrated sexual abuse on the child. The father was completely vindicated by the court and the mother was found to have lied.

    H v J (2015)

    The mother (our client) sought to relocate permanently outside the jurisdiction. The father was initially vehemently opposed. Negotiated settlement to permit the mother to move with contact to the father.
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  • Court of Protection

    Lucinda is trained to undertake all manner of COP work, whether financial or welfare related, and is eager to offer training to solicitors who are keen to expand into this area.

    Lucinda has been instructed in disputes over Deputyship, mostly notably having acted for a firm of solicitors who had received instructions to contend for Deputyship in relation to a family member. She has also appeared in a number of Deprivation of Liberty applications acting both for and in opposition to local authorities.

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  • Family - Finance

    Lucinda receives regular instruction in disputes relating to financial distribution following divorce or separation of cohabitees. She offers pragmatic and robust advice in such matters, and aims to encourage as swift and cost-effective a resolution as is viable in each case.

    Where Cohabitation (TOLATA) matters are concerned, Lucinda’s knowledge and continuing experience of Civil procedure have been invaluable to her.

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  • Company and Commercial

    Lucinda has extensive experience in conducting Credit Hire claims on behalf of hire companies at small claim, fast track and multi-track level.

    Her continuing interest in Credit Hire work is borne out of her in-depth familiarity with the legal principles in this area, and the occasional need to divert from the intensity of Care work.

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  • Public Access

    Lucinda is trained to undertake direct access and will accept instructions from members of the public where appropriate.

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