ProfileI am a specialist family arbitrator, barrister, mediator and private FDR judge, in leading family law Chambers 1 Hare Court.
I qualified as a family arbitrator at the outset of the IFLA scheme in 2012. My arbitrations range from full final hearings, at which the parties are represented by counsel, to adjudications made on the basis of written evidence and submissions alone.
I co-founded the award-winning website FamilyArbitrator.com and its parallel LinkedIn discussion group.
My arbitrations include the only two family arbitrations to have been reported in the law reports to date. In the landmark case of S v S  EWHC 7 (Fam) the President of the Family Division endorsed the principles of the scheme and gave important guidance on how judges should deal with applications for court consent orders based on arbitration awards. After that arbitration one of the solicitors involved wrote "We agreed upon Gavin Smith as someone whose judgment and technical knowhow would deliver on [the] goals and whose personal skills would make it as benign an experience as possible.” (Resolution Review, March/April 2014).
In DB v DLJ  EWHC 324 (Fam) Mostyn J rejected a challenge to my award based on a supervening Barder event and / or mistake as to the value of a property. Mostyn J described the award as "a thorough, conscientious and clear piece of work. Its quality is a testament to the merit of opting for arbitration.”
At the end of another arbitration one of the counsel wrote: "May I say how impressed [the instructing solicitor] and I were with the way in which you handled everything … The whole experience was a million times better than the lottery at the CFC.”
I am available to undertake arbitrations of all kinds, from single issue disputes to those involving the full range of financial remedy claims, and from high value cases to ones where the parties’ resources are very modest. Details of my availability and fees may be obtained from my clerk James Collier at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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