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Melissa Rutherford, Duncan Lewis

Melissa Rutherford

Solicitor

Contact Information

Profile / Experience

I am a Solicitor within the Family and Childcare Department at Duncan Lewis' Shepherd’s Bush branch.


I specialise in both public and private family law matters. My extensive experience in these fields includes:

  • Divorce & Financial settlements, to include Judicial Separation;
  • Child law (Residence, Contact, Care Cases, Prohibited Steps Orders, Specific Issue Orders);
  • Prenuptial, Postnuptial, Separation and Cohabitation Agreements;
  • Domestic Violence (Non Molestation Orders and Occupation Orders); and
  • TOLATA (Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act 1996).

My main focus is with private divorce and financial proceedings having acquired extensive experience in advising clients in relation to financial matters concerning Low to High Net Worth financial cases. I am a member of Resolution and as such I continually encourage the process of Alternative Dispute Resolution throughout proceedings, regularly settling matters without the need to issue proceedings through the Courts.


I have acquired experience representing parties in care proceedings where concerns relate to domestic violence, neglect, drug and alcohol misuse and mental illness. I have further assisted in acting alongside the Official Solicitor in cases where the client has been assessed as lacking the capacity to act on their own accord.


I hold extensive experience in domestic violence work on applications for individuals for protective non-molestation orders and occupation orders, often acting for individuals on an emergency basis. I further represent individuals on applications for prohibited steps orders and specific issue orders within Child Arrangements proceedings.


I maintain a continued commitment to undertaking pro bono work. Since commencement of my employment at Duncan Lewis Solicitors, I have taken on an increase in instructions from domestic violence victims on an emergency basis. My keen interest in protecting victims of violence, as highlighted in my pro bono legal advice services provided to the Latin American Women’s Rights Services (LAWRS) on a regular basis. LAWRS is a user-led, feminist and human rights organisation, which focuses on addressing the practical and strategic needs of Latin American women displaced by poverty and violence since 1983. LAWRS directly supports more than 5,000 women annually.


I strive upon being presented with a challenge. I am renowned for being proactive and thinking ‘outside of the box.’

Education

  • Legal Practice Course at College of Law, Bloomsbury
  • LLB(Hons), Law and BSc (Hons), Psychology, at Metropolitan University

Career

  • Duncan Lewis Solicitors

Membership & Accreditations

  • Member of Resolution – First for Family Law
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