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Background

Geraldine More O’Ferrall

Call: 1993

Geraldine is a specialist family practitioner who has over 30 years of experience in family work, particularly the law relating to children. This includes complex public law cases involving non-accidental injury, factitious illness, sexual abuse, disputed medical and psychiatric evidence and neglect. Geraldine has extensive experience in international cases, particularly child abduction and relocation, and has been involved in a number of leading cases in child abduction and other areas of law. Geraldine has experience at all levels of court, including the Supreme Court.

Expertise

Family

All aspects of the law relating to children including complex public law cases involving non-accidental injury, factitious illness, sexual abuse, neglect, cases involving disputed medical and psychiatric evidence and adoption. Geraldine acts for parents, local authorities and Guardians.

Extensive experience in international cases involving child abduction and relocation, Hague Convention and non-Hague Convention countries and other international treaties. Geraldine has successfully pursued cases to the Court of Appeal and to the Supreme Court.

Notable Family Cases


Re H (2024)

Lead counsel representing a MGM in complex non-accidental injury case where MGM was a possible witness to one of the injuries to a 5 year old child.


A LA v KB & Anor [2022] EWFC 39

Represented LA in High Court case arising after child born to mother who had significant cognitive disabilities and could not consent to sexual relations. Linked COP proceedings. COP papers including trial bundle of over 8000 pages. Father was mother’s stepfather. Sentenced to 12 years for rape of mother. Fact finding hearing required as family members sought to care for child and the court needed to determine whether any had knowledge of the circumstances of the conception, as alleged by father. Issues of financial abuse also required determination involving English and foreign financial records. Three separate trial bundles due to various disclosure restrictions to family and interveners.


Re F [2022]

Lead counsel representing mother in case where child had suffered a shaking /impact injury to the head. Mother only possible perpetrator, issue was causation. Paediatric neurosurgeon, paediatric radiologist and paediatric evidence obtained. One expert was discharged due to inconsistencies in reports. 10 day fact finding hearing. Negative pre-hearing SW assessment successfully challenged. Child ultimately returned home.


Re L (A Child:Step-parent adoption) [2021] EWCA Civ 801

Represented a Guardian in an appeal against a step-parent adoption order


Re AO 2018

Represented a mother in High Court case involving a toddler suffering from sickle cell disease. Medical reports indicated that without regular blood transfusions there was a 10% risk of stroke. The mother had refused transfusions on grounds of religious beliefs. Care proceedings issued. Preliminary ruling that transfusions were necessary.

Mother ultimately agreed transfusions. At ineffective IRH the judge expressed a view that a care order seemed likely. The same judge was allocated to hear the adjourned IRH. The judge was requested by letter to recused themselves. No decision on letter but case was relisted on another day to another judge. A supervision order was made.


NIB v TS & ES [2016] EWHC 3213 (Fam)

Application to discharge wardship when child found to have been wrongfully removed from jurisdiction had lived in Egypt for five years


PH v AH [2016] EWHC 1131 (Fam)

Circumstances in which oral examination of a CAFCASS officer in a final Hague Convention hearing may be dispensed with


MD v CT [2014] EWHC 871 (Fam)

Acted for appellant mother against registration and enforcement of a French order granting sole residence to father. First case on consideration of the effect of Article 23(c), Brussels II a when French service rules complied with Annex II certificated granted but actual service had not been effected. Appeal allowed.


X v Y & Z Police Force, A, B and C [2013] 1 FLR 1277

Police joined as parties in child abduction case where client was an undercover police officer.


Re S (A Child) [2012] UKSC 10

Further consideration of Art 13(b) of the Hague Convention 1980 in case where client resisting return of a toddler to Australia and had a pre-existing anxiety condition and applicant had admitted domestic abuse.


Re W [2012] 2 FLR 133

First case where successive orders for committal were made against abducting father. Acted for mother whose three year old daughter was abducted to father’s family in Pakistan. The daughter was finally returned to the Mother’s care


Re D (Abduction: Child's Objections) [2012] 2 FLR 266 CA

Consideration by Court of Appeal of its discretion to return when child’s objections defence is made out.


DT v LBT (Abduction: Domestic Abuse [2011] 1 FLR 1215

Junior Counsel in case where client raised Art 13(b) defences to Hague Convention return order. Unusually evidence was heard at length and court made findings in respect of serious and sustained domestic abuse including sexual violence. Consideration of ECJ decision of Neulinger in respect of Art 13(b) and compliance with Article 8 of the Human Rights Act 1998.


Re B (Care Proceedings: Withdrawal [2010] AllER (D) 190

Acted for Local Authority in case of child with severe physical disabilities. Parents would not agree recommended radical treatment plan resulting in treating hospital referring case to Local Authority. At final hearing hospital indicated it would not seek court authority for recommended treatment if parents did not agree. Care proceedings withdrawn.


Other Reported Cases include:

Camden LBC v Goldenberg [1997] 1FLR 556 Court of Appeal

Re E (Child Abduction: Non Convention Country) [1999] 2 FLR 642 CA

Re RC and BC (Child Abduction) (Brussels II Revised: Art 11(7) 2009 1 FLR 574

  • Family Law Bar Association (FLBR)
  • Middle Temple
  • LLB (Hons) University College, London
  • Inns of Court School of Law

Clerk Team

Adam Wadley

Practice Director, Family

adamw@no5.com

07780 453079

Clare Radburn

Practice Director, Family, Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury

clarer@no5.com

07809 407950

Monica Hussain

Family Clerk and Admin Assistant

monicah@no5.com

Sophie Wright

Family Clerk and Admin Assistant

sophiew@no5.com

Gugandeep Kooner

Family Clerk and Admin Assistant

gugandeepk@no5.com

Paul Sams

Paul Sams

Family Clerk (Consultant)

pauls@no5.com

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