EVENT FULL | “Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n’ roll (and rolling pins)” | Families and the Law Courts

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Date(s) - 30/09/2017
9:30 am - 4:30 pm

Scope, London


CPD Hours six


This day is for therapists and students who want to gain a greater understanding of family law, both in the private law system and in the criminal justice courts. The training will include talks by two leading lawyers, one a solicitor and one a barrister, and time for questions and answers and the sharing of professional and personal experiences.

The aims of this course are:

  • To provide an overview of law relating to individuals, couples and families both as regards relationships and from the perspective of the justice system
  • To develop understanding of the legal issues that face clients so that they can be supported during the legal process
  • To consider how lawyers and the therapeutic and counselling communities can best work together at times of great change for clients

Learning outcomes:

When working with clients who are interacting with the legal system, the delegate will be able to:

  • Identify which legal issues they face
  • Understand in outline the legal processes in which clients are involved
  • Support clients through the legal process
  • Recognise when family or criminal law issues impact on therapy or counselling
  • Processes used by family lawyers to resolve disputes outside the court arena
  • Be alert to some of their professional duties when working with clients who are involved with legal processes


09:30 – Registration and coffee

10:00 – Introduction

10:15 – How is the civil legal system structured? Family law and family courts

10:30 – Marriage, Separation and Divorce

11:00 – Law (civil and criminal) on domestic abuse and domestic violence

11:45 – Coffee

12:00 – Private law concerning arrangements for children

12:45 – Financial arrangements following separation and/or divorce

13:00 – Lunch

13:45 – How is the criminal legal system structured when dealing with behaviour in couples and families?

14:00 – Sexual offences including rape, domestic violence and sexual assault, indecent images, extreme pornography, mobile phones and social media: adults and children

14:45 – Hate crimes, racially aggravated and homophobic offences

15:00 – Case studies – interactive – both presenters

15:45 – Tea

16:00 – Discussion and review of the day

16:30 – Close


Catherine Picardo, 1 Mitre Court Buildings, formerly solicitor now barrister, MA (Cantab). She studied languages for her undergraduate degree. She trained as a lawyer from 1996 – 2001.

She worked on two public enquiries: Bloody Sunday and Lockerbie. Her work as a criminal barrister includes extensive experience of both prosecuting on behalf of the Crown Prosecution Service and others, and defending members of the public. She also has experience of drafting Sexual Offences Prevention Orders.

Amongst other cases of note, she has prosecuted a 15 year old youth, charged with multiple sexual offences against his younger siblings aged 4, 8 and 9 and secured convictions on all 5 charges. She has defended a 54 year old man charged with attempted rape of his 12 year old step-daughter, and a youth charged with 3 charges of rape of a female under 13. She has defended a refugee with mental health issues after torture for his homosexuality in Iran, after his arrest at a party, and secured an acquittal.

Hazel Wright, Partner in Hunters, solicitor and accredited family mediator and collaborative lawyer, trustee of Tavistock Relationships, MA (Cantab)

Hazel works in a specialist family law department in central London solicitors’ firm. She qualified as a solicitor in 1981 and as a mediator in 1991. Her clients come from a wide range of backgrounds, including City high flyers, entrepreneurs, sportsmen and sportswomen, other professionals (including judges), and many others, mainly with high or medium net worth and incomes. Many have an international background. The work is mainly in the legal consequences of separation and divorce/dissolution of civil partnerships, including the financial arrangements and for any children. Her commitment to constructive resolution informs her mediation practice also. She is recommended in leading legal directories as “very calm, reassuring and level-headed” and “really knows what she is talking about”.

Both presenters regularly comment in the press and train other lawyers and others. They both hope for a future in which all professionals can work with clients to bring them the best outcomes.

Terms and Conditions: The full fee for each training day is £115 for COSRT members and £125 for non-members. Cheques should be made payable to COSRT in GB pounds sterling. Payment must be received by COSRT before the training day. Confirmation and details of your booking will be emailed to you. Cancellations must be made in writing. There is an administrative charge of £20 per person for cancellations received up to six weeks prior to the training day. Thereafter no refund is possible. To substitute a delegate please call the COSRT office (020 8543 2707) at least seven days prior to the event.

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