Barrister Simon Rowbotham

Simon Rowbotham

Year of call: 2011  


“Simon is immeasurably intellectual; his written work is faultless. He is quick on his feet and shines in the courtroom.”

Holly Tootill, Senior Associate, JMW Solicitors



Simon Rowbotham has recently moved to London from Manchester, where his practice included all areas of family and Court of Protection law. He built a solid private client practice, with regular instructions from top family law solicitors in the North West and further afield. In 2017, two of his children cases gained national attention (one leading to legislative changes) while clients to date have included high-profile sportspeople. Simon has appeared as a legal guest on television and radio, including BBC Breakfast and Radio 4’s Today programme.

Child & Family

Child & Family

Simon is regularly instructed in all areas of family law. His work includes:

Children Law (private and public)

Divorce, financial remedies and Schedule 1

Family Law Act applications

Pre-nuptial, post-nuptial and cohabitation agreements

TOLATA/cohabitation disputes

Court of Protection

Mental Health

Children Law (Private) Finance, Divorce and ToLATA Children Law (Public) Court of Protection and Mental Health Family Law Act Applications

Children Law (Private)

Simon accepts instruction in all areas of private law children work, including applications for child arrangements (both residence and contact), removal from the jurisdiction, relocation cases and issues of surrogacy and parental responsibility. He also acts in cases of international child abduction and wardship proceedings.

His experience to date includes cases involving child sexual abuse, press restriction orders, administration of drugs to children, domestic violence and relocation to non-Hague Convention countries. He has experience of conducting lengthy Finding of Fact Hearings and has appeared at all levels, including the Court of Appeal. Simon also has experience of cases involving on-going police investigations and media attention.

Reported cases include:

  • D (Children) [2016] EWCA Civ 89, [2016] 1 FCR 545, [2016] 4 WLR 52, [2016] EWCA Civ 89, [2016] WLR(D) 89: An appeal to the Court of the Appeal involving a novel point of law concerning the authority of the Family Court to order payments to third parties. The Court observed that Simon had “presented the arguments in support of the application in writing and orally with clarity and thoroughness”.

Finance, Divorce and ToLATA

Simon is an experienced financial practitioner who is regularly instructed following divorce and the dissolution of civil partnerships. He has received instructions on cases that range from modest means to cases of a high-net worth, involving pensions and companies. He is experienced in working with expert evidence (particularly in relation to forensic accountants, pensions and health) and has conducted hearings at all levels, including preliminary issue hearings on third-party interests.

Simon has experience of drafting pre- and post-nuptial agreements and has worked with cases involving the interpretation of the same. He has acted in high-net Schedule 1 applications for child maintenance, including cases with inter-jurisdictional issues and high profile clients.

He has experience of cohabitation cases under ToLATA 1996 and regularly accepts instructions to draft Pre-Action Letters and Particulars of Claim. Simon has drafted cohabitation/separation agreements for non-married couples.

Simon has acted in cases of contested petitions for divorce.

Reported cases include:

  • H v H [2015] EWHC B24 (Fam): a High Court, “big money” financial remedy matter involving the interpretation of a pre-nuptial agreement and the application of section 27 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973.

Children Law (Public)

In public law cases, Simon has experience in complex care proceedings representing local authorities, parents, children, wider family members and CAFCASS. He has been instructed on serious cases that involve non-accidental injury to a child, the murder of one parent and intra familial sexual abuse. His experience includes cases requiring press restriction orders and child sexual abuse cases requiring the children to give live evidence.

Simon has advised local authorities on cases involving deprivation of liberty in the context of children as well as issues of ordinary residence (particularly in the context of children entering adulthood). Further, his experience includes cases involving the lawfulness of placement of children in secure accommodation outside of the jurisdiction.

Reported cases include:

  • X (A Child) and Y (A Child) (Rev 1) [2016] EWHC 2271 (Fam) [2016] 3 WLR 1718, [2016] Fam Law 1327: instructed by CAFCASS in a case before the President of the Family Division concerning complex questions of cross-jurisdictional placement of children in care and enforcement of orders.
  • X (A Child) (No 2) [2017] EWHC 1585 (Fam) (28 June 2017)
  • X (A Child) (No 3) [2017] EWHC 2036 (Fam) (3 August 2017)
  • X (A Child) (No 4) [2017] EWHC 2084 (Fam) (7 August 2017)
  • Care proceedings interlinked with an application for orders under the inherent jurisdiction, in which the Court considered the need for inchoate care planning and (at the conclusion of the care proceedings) the subsequent attempts to find X a hospital bed.

Court of Protection and Mental Health

Simon specialises in all fields of Court of Protection work, acting for local authorities, Clinical Commissioning Groups, the Official Solicitor on behalf of protected parties, NHS bodies and wider family members.

Simon regularly appears before the Court of Protection in cases involving section 21A challenges and other welfare decisions, with associated issues of human rights. His experience includes cases involving challenges to medical evidence concerning fluctuating mental capacity and applications involving serious medical treatment.

Simon has experience acting in cases involving property and affairs decisions, including disputed deputyship appointments, powers of attorney, financial abuse and ratification of gifts.

Simon is also instructed in cases concerning the Mental Health Act 1983, particularly applications to displace a nearest relative.

Family Law Act Applications

Simon’s practice includes experience of applications for Non-Molestation and Occupation Orders, particularly where they arise in connection to children or financial remedy proceedings.

How to get in touch

For more information please contact our clerks by calling +44 (0) 20 7242 3555 or by email.

Privacy Notice

Simon is committed to protecting and respecting the privacy of individuals. In order to provide legal services, including advice and representation services, Simon needs to process personal data. This will include client’s personal data and the personal data of others who feature in the course of any matter upon which he is instructed.

Simon will process personal data in accordance with his Privacy Policy.

Please click here to see how Simon will, absent any other arrangement with those instructing him, fulfil any Joint Controller responsibilities he may have under relevant data protection legislation.

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