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Liz Isaacs QC

Door Tenant

About

Elizabeth is a specialist child law silk and sits as a Family Division Deputy High Court Judge.  She has an established national reputation for a compassionate, pragmatic, and strategic approach, excellent advocacy, and forensic preparation in complex public law cases.  Elizabeth has substantial expertise in acting for all parties in complex care, adoption and wardship proceedings and has a detailed knowledge of the legal and social care issues relating to local authority planning and decision making for children. 

Experience

She recently acted for respondents in Operation Satchel and Operation Directed, the two largest public law cases heard to date in the UK Family courts. Particular areas of interest include: 

  • Child death 
  • Serious physical injury 
  • Allegations of physical, emotional and sexual abuse 
  • Fabricated/Induced Illness (FII) 
  • Toxicology and poisoning 
  • Judicial review 
  • Human rights issues 
  • Disclosure and Public Interest Immunity (PII) issues relating to children 
  • LGBT and Modern Families parenting issues 

Elizabeth is an expert authority in the development of the law relating to surrogacy; she was leading counsel in the recent ground-breaking cases of Re X (A Child) (Surrogacy: Time Limit) [2014] EWHC 3135 (Fam) and Re Z (No 2) (a child) [2016] EWHC 1191 (fam) (which led to the Government’s revision of the law prohibiting single people from applying for parental orders). 

Elizabeth is also regularly instructed in cases following breakdown of surrogacy arrangements or same-sex parenting arrangements. 

Elizabeth is the head of the Chambers Childcare Group and a member of Chambers Management Committee. 

In 2017 Elizabeth was shortlisted for ‘Family Silk of the Year’ at the Jordans Family Law Awards, in 2018 she was the ‘Regional/Scottish Silk of the Year’ at the Legal 500 UK Awards and in 2019 she was shortlisted again for the same award. 

 Elizabeth is an appointed Trustee of the Donor Conception Network. 

Elizabeth is Direct Access trained and is therefore happy and able to accept instructions from prospective clients directly. 

Practice Areas

Public Law Children

Private Law Children

Dispute Resolution

Testimonials

“Elizabeth’s technical knowledge is brilliant, and she is also excellent and grounded in her relationships with the client.” “Elizabeth has an almost encyclopaedic knowledge of the law. It’s astounding and impressive and she’s a pleasure to watch in action.” Chambers & Partners 2022  

“She is clever creative and very hard working. Her written work reflects this, and her advocacy is thorough and persuasive. Many expect her to be on the high court bench soon. I agree with them.” Legal 500 2022 

“She is creative, strategic and collaborative in her approach. A QC of choice for cases which challenge the law or raise novel issues in the area of LGBT family law and fertility law.” Chambers and Partners 2021 

“Her preparation of every case is meticulous and impressive, her advice is robust and straightforward, and she stands up for her clients.” Legal 500 2021 

“She has an excellent in-depth knowledge of the law and social work practice, and tenaciously fights her client’s corner in a firm and balanced manner. She’s also extremely personable and a great team player.” “She’s a phenomenal individual who mastered the issues very quickly.” Chambers & Partners 2020 

Publications

Clarke, Hall & Morrison on Children – contributing editor 

Family Court Practice (Jordans) – contributing editor 

Challenging and Defending Local Authority Child Care Decisions (April 2013) Jordans Publishing (Co-author) 

Social Work Decision Making: A Guide for Child Care Lawyers (2nd Edition March 2012) Jordans Publishing (Co-author) – “A valuable addition to any Childcare library.” 

Testimonials

“Elizabeth’s technical knowledge is brilliant, and she is also excellent and grounded in her relationships with the client.” “Elizabeth has an almost encyclopaedic knowledge of the law. It’s astounding and impressive and she’s a pleasure to watch in action.” Chambers & Partners 2022  

“She is clever creative and very hard working. Her written work reflects this, and her advocacy is thorough and persuasive. Many expect her to be on the high court bench soon. I agree with them.” Legal 500 2022 

“She is creative, strategic and collaborative in her approach. A QC of choice for cases which challenge the law or raise novel issues in the area of LGBT family law and fertility law.” Chambers and Partners 2021 

“Her preparation of every case is meticulous and impressive, her advice is robust and straightforward, and she stands up for her clients.” Legal 500 2021 

“She has an excellent in-depth knowledge of the law and social work practice, and tenaciously fights her client’s corner in a firm and balanced manner. She’s also extremely personable and a great team player.” “She’s a phenomenal individual who mastered the issues very quickly.” Chambers & Partners 2020 

Cases

Tameside MBC v AM & Ors; Derby City Council v AB & Ors; Lambeth BC v ED & Ors; Manchester CC v LT & Ors [ 2021] EWHC 2472 (Fam)

Salford City Council v W [2021] 1689 (Fam)

Salford City Council v W [2021] EWHC 61 (Fam)

Re K (Threshold: Cocaine Ingestion: Failure to Give Evidence) [2020] EWHC 2502 (Fam) 

Re C (Children) (Covid-19: Representation) [2020] EWCA Civ 734 

Re P (Sexual Abuse: Finding of Fact Hearing) [2019] EWFC 27 

VBC v AGM [2019] EWFC 64 

Re AA (Children) [2019] EWFC 64 

Re C (Declaration of Parentage: Written Consent) [2019] EWHC 648 (Fam) 

M v W, C & Secretary of State for Health [2019] EWHC 648 (Fam) 

Rochdale Borough Council v F & Others [2018] EWHC 2996 (Fam) 

Carmarthenshire CC v Y and Others [2017] EWFC 36 

Re Z (A Child) (No 2) [2016] EWHC 1191 (Fam) 

Re N-S (Children) [2017] EWCA Civ 1121 

Re AD, AE, AF, AG & AH (HFEA 2008) [2017] EWHC 1782 (Fam) 

Re P-K (Children) [2017] EWCA Civ 965 

RE M (A CHILD) sub nom (1) H (2) B v (1) S (2) M (A CHILD BY HER GUARDIAN) [2015] EWFC 36 

Education and Professional Memberships

BA (Hons) Psychology (Dunelm) 

MA Social Work 

LLB (Hons) 

MCIArb (Family) 

Family Law Bar Association

Association of Lawyers for Children

LGBT Family Law Institute – UK & Ireland

Chartered Institute of Arbitrators