“We are all rescuers,” says Wilmslow solicitor, Louise Richardson. She’s talking about herself and other family lawyers to Barry HookLouise Richardson
On the day I met Wilmslow solicitor, Louise Richardson, in the back of my mind was the plight of Helen the 36-year old daughter of Pat and Tony Archer. For those of you not addicted to The Archers (the soap opera on Radio 4, every day except Saturday at 7pm), Helen is in a poisonous marriage with husband, Rob. He’s slowly crushing her spirit as he casts his insidious control over her.
In reality she should divorce him but instead she stabs him so much and leaves him in hospital critically ill. Until that point of the stabbing, I would be recommending that Helen quickly makes an appointment with Louise. She’s a top family lawyer. But she doesn’t do murder – or even attempted murder cases.
“My practice focuses on representing clients in divorce cases and the issues relating to divorce; the division of marital property and finances, child custody and support and even prenuptial agreements.”
With 24-years’ experience, gained by working for a major firm of solicitors in Knutsford, Louise decided this was the year to branch out and establish her own law firm – Louise Richardson Family Law (a trading name of Richardson Law Ltd).
“I was reaching that stage in my career where I didn’t want to start regretting that I hadn’t established my own firm. I felt the time was right in order to gain autonomy.” Now she’s in a busy office, surrounded by three assistants, at 84 Chapel Lane Wilmslow.
She’s also a collaborative lawyer and mediator. Collaborative law is a legal process enabling couples who have decided to separate or divorce, to all meet and work amicably with each side’s solicitors, in order to avoid the uncertain and costly outcome of court cases.
When she is not in the office, or in court, she will be attending training sessions to keep herself abreast of new developments in family law. “Yes, during the course of my career, I have been involved in some complex high value cases with high profile individuals and here, in Wilmslow, we can offer the same service as city centre lawyers but without the associated fees.”
When I suggest to her that family clients are always going through stressful times, her reply is profound. “I suppose we are all rescuers. I like to think we are helping people – even the wider family in divorce cases, like grandparents.” They are often the forgotten ones in cases where families split and grandparents often fear they may never see their grandchildren again. If that happens, an application to the court can be made under the Children’s Act.
You’ll learn a lot more about Louise and her practice at www.richardsonlaw.org.uk