Public law children:
Victoria is instructed by local authorities, parents, relatives, guardians and children, at all stages of proceedings. She regularly appears on cases before judges of the High Court.
She conducts fact-finding hearings with complex issues including allegations of causing a child’s death, inflicted injuries such as brain injury and multiple fractures, starvation, suffocation, child trafficking, child sexual exploitation, factitious or fabricated illness, domestic abuse, emotional harm and chronic neglect. She has a wealth of experience in cross-examining medical experts and other professionals.
Victoria has extensive experience of cases with allegations of sexual abuse, including inter-familial abuse. She has represented child victims and child perpetrators and children that have given evidence in proceedings. She is adept at conducting Re W and ground rules hearings and the special considerations that relate to children giving evidence.
Victoria is used to dealing with cases where there are concurrent criminal proceedings and issues of disclosure and PII.
She has represented teenage and vulnerable parents who have physical and/or learning disabilities. She has represented a child without capacity and addressed issues of deprivation of liberty for that child.
Victoria is skilled in making legal arguments on designated local authority and dealing with applications to revoke care and placement orders and those under s.38(6) and s.34 of the Children Act 1989.
Private law children:
Victoria has developed a strong reputation in dealing with private law disputes, from advice before proceedings to enforcement of court orders.
She conducts complex multi-day fact-finding hearings involving allegations of domestic abuse, child abuse, sexual abuse (including rape and incest), arson, emotional abuse and parental alienation.
Victoria is accomplished in presenting legal arguments on implacable hostility, children giving evidence and where the court is considering a transfer of living arrangements.
She advises and represents parties on specific issue applications relating to medical, religious or educational issues.
Victoria is aware of the special issues raised by complex and long-running private law litigation and is regularly instructed by parents and guardians in cases where the children are joined as a party and there are multiple experts. She has appeared in the Court of Appeal on one such case described by Lady Justice Black as difficult and unusual.
International children work:
Victoria has a particular interest in Children Act work with an international element. Victoria’s practice includes cases with applications for removal from the jurisdiction, temporary and permanent.
Victoria represents parties in child abduction cases with Hague Convention and Brussels IIR considerations and also cases concerning the recognition and enforcement of foreign orders.
She has succeeded in legal arguments on habitual residence and has attended the High Court to obtain orders under its inherent jurisdiction, sometimes at short notice.
Victoria has an established financial remedy practice and is able to offer advice and representation to clients at all stages from pre-action to enforcement.
Victoria represents clients in cases where there are substantial assets. However, she rises to the challenge of finding a solution to needs based cases, always taking a pragmatic approach.
She regularly receives instructions in cases involving family businesses, pension provision including Armed Forces pensions, foreign property, farming cases, MPS applications, s.37 injunctions and where third party claims have been made against matrimonial property.
Victoria is accomplished in running arguments about pre-acquired and inherited wealth, non-matrimonial assets, overseas assets and allegations of non-disclosure or dissipated assets.
She has experience in dealing with Schedule 1 applications.
Victoria prides herself in being approachable to lay and professional clients and opponents. She is known for taking a robust but common sense approach. She prioritises client care and thorough preparation. Victoria has a passion for all sports and enjoys white collar boxing having hung up her rugby boots.
“She has always without doubt been excellent. She’s meticulous, she’s enthusiastic and I have excellent confidence in her preparation. She is absolutely dependable and on top of her game throughout the case.”
Chambers UK 2020
“Has a good grasp of the facts and is extremely thorough in preparation.”
Legal 500 2020
“A real fighter, who’s always well prepared and very knowledgeable.” “She impresses in respect of her knowledge of the law and preparation of cases.”
Chambers UK 2019
“A real fighter, always prepared and very knowledgeable.”
Legal 500 2019
“A robust litigator who is well versed in financial and Children Act matters.” “Incredibly tenacious and a first choice for cases involving children.”
Chambers and Partners 2018
“A very strong and robust advocate, excellent at managing client expectations”
Chambers and Partners 2017
“An intelligent and passionate advocate.”
Legal 500 2017
“Extremely approachable and highly regarded in the area.”
Legal 500 2016
A Local Authority v AB and Others  EWFC 75
Re B (A Child)  EWCA Civ 1579
Re S (Child Abduction: Joinder of sibling: Child’s Objections)  EWHC 1227 (Fam)
Re P (Findings of Fact)  EWCA Civ 89
The Legal 500 UK Award 2020 Regional Bar: Junior of the year
Gray’s Inn Scholarship in 2002
Member of the FLBA
Association of Lawyers for Children
Qualified to accept instructions through Public Access
Please click here to find the most recent article Victoria Clifford has written on The perils and pitfalls of DIY Divorce.