There seems to be a plethora of dramas with a family law theme on the television at the moment. A few weeks ago we had Come Home and currently we have the drama series, The Split. Unlike many of the critics, I am really enjoying the series, despite the fact that it is not very true to life.
The series is about a family law solicitor who leaves the family firm run by her mother and sister to join a rival firm. Her father left her mother and the three children to set up home with their au pair many years ago and did not maintain contact with his daughters – but he is back on the scene and trying to re-establish a relationship with his daughters. It is unclear whether his motives are honourable or whether he is trying to get them onside to sell the family firm.
Every week we see different stories arising out of the caseload of the solicitors. In the first episode two of the sisters were representing the husband and wife, respectively. Would that really happen in real life? You would certainly have to disclose to your client that the solicitor on the other side was your sister, and what client would agree to you continuing to act in those circumstances?
Many ethical rules were broken in the first episode. The main character Hannah, played by Nicola Walker, saw both the husband and wife together for the initial consultation – not possible, there is an obvious conflict of interest. She then left confidential documents laying around the office enabling her sister to access them and use them to her advantage.
Episode two saw a round table meeting between a professional footballer and a model and their legal representatives, attempting to agree the terms of a Prenuptial Agreement – neither solicitor followed their client’s instructions but just pursued a mission of their own. Hannah then told another client the reason why the model was at her office – an outrageous breach of client confidentiality!
Having said all of the above, the clothes worn by the solicitors are uber- stylish and the office decor is to die for!
On a more serious note, at Meaby&Co our Family Law Team will always:-
ensure there is no conflict of interest with any other client before accepting instructions
keep your documents private and confidential
make sure they understand your instructions and follow them
give you realistic expectations as to the outcome of your case
If you would like advice regarding family law matters, it is recommended that you contact Head of Family Law, Joanna Toloczko at Meaby&Co for timely advice: email@example.com or call 0207 703 5034.
Meaby&Co is authorised and regulated by the Solicitor’s Regulation Authority (SRA Number 447880) and registered in England and Wales with registered number OC322672 at 2 Camberwell Church St, London, SE5 8QY.