Provincial firms are the toast of Cafcass

Beachcroft Wans-broughs and Exeter firm Michelmores have beaten off national competition to take places on the panel of the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass)

Beachcrofts has been appointed as adviser on all commercial, litigation and employment matters, while Michelmores will be handling the body’s property instructions.
Cafcass was established in April 2001 when the Family Court Welfare Service, the Guardian ad Litem and Reporting Officer Service and the Children’s Divisions of the Official Solicitor’s Department were all brought together under one roof.
Until now Cafcass had turned to a number of firms for advice, including both Beachcrofts and Eversheds, but this was the first time that it had conducted a beauty parade.
The body tendered its commercial, litigation and employment advice first, and other firms in the running included Bevan Ashford, Bird & Bird, Eversheds, Michel-mores and Wragge & Co.
“I believe they were impressed with our national network and the experience we demonstrated,” said Glenn Miller, client relationship partner at Beachcrofts.
Although Michelmores lost out on the commercial work, it persevered and won the property place on the panel. Michelmores has been advising Cafcass since its inception, but the firm still had to beat off four other rivals to confirm its place.
“We’ve got a sound background in acting for government bodies, so that would have helped us win the work,” said Michelmores property partner Richard Honey.