Our People – Family and Children Law
Suzanne Smith - Head of Department
Suzanne is a Solicitor and is the Family and Children Law Team’s Head of Department.
She has over 14 years post qualification experience and has undertaken work in all areas of Family Law, including Care Proceedings cases brought by Local Authorities. However in recent years, she has specialised in Divorce and Separation matters. Suzanne has a particular interest and expertise in financial settlements arising out of Divorce, including the negotiation of high value agreements.
Suzanne is the mother of two daughters, one adult and the other is a child who attends a local grammar school. She also has a young grandson.
Suzanne has been physically active throughout her life and is a good skier. As well as being a member of the Oval Ski Club, she also enjoys cycling and walking.
David Garrett - Senior Partner
David is the Firm’s Senior Partner. Having joined the Practice in 1975, he became a Partner in 1980. David chairs Partner’s meetings and oversees the overall development of the Firm.
He specialises in Family Law and has been working exclusively in this area for many years. He is a founder member of the Law Society’s Children Law Panel, which was established in 1984, recognising Solicitors who specialise in this area of Law. He is also an accredited member of Resolution.
David is regularly involved in complex Care Proceedings brought by Local Authorities concerning children who have either been abused or have been the subject of neglect. He is also a Solicitor Advocate (Higher Rights Civil) which allows him to represent clients in the High Court.
David is married and the father of two adult sons. He also has an adult step-son and step-daughter, as well as a granddaughter and baby grandson.
He has played sport all his life, including football, cricket and hockey and plays for league team, Neston and South Wirral Hockey Club, at Parkgate. David also runs regularly and enjoys walking and reading.
Michael Batty - Solicitor
Michael joined the Practice in 2012 having graduated from Sheffield Hallam University in 2011 with a Law Degree. He then completed his Post Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice at BPP Law School in Liverpool. Michael successfully completed his Training Contract in September 2016 and is now a fully qualified Solicitor in the Family and Children Law Department.
Michael has a keen interest in Public Law Proceedings and regularly represents parents whose children are subject to Care Proceedings before the Family Court. Michael also provides advice and assistance to parents and carers around the Merseyside and Cheshire areas where there is Local Authority involvement, including representation at Pre-Proceedings level.
In the future, Michael hopes to attain the Law Society Children Panel Accreditation so that he can represent children and more effectively represent the interests of parents within Care Proceedings.
Outside of work, Michael has taught himself how to play the guitar and is an avid fan of Liverpool Football Club. He also enjoys spending time with family and friends, and his dog, Poppy.
Family and Children Law Department
Kirsty Holland - Legal & Personal Assistant to David Garrett
Jo McKenzie - Secretary
Rachel Fawcett - Secretary
Kelsey Bennett - Junior Secretary