Frances Judd QC MFCIArb

Frances Judd QC is a door tenant at Wilberforce Barristers.

Frances was educated at Cambridge University and was called to the Bar in 1984.
She took silk in 2006.
She was appointed a Recorder in 2002 and was appointed a Deputy High Court Judge in 2011.
She is recommended in the Chambers Guide to the Legal Profession ('The absolutely fantastic Frances Judd QC  is measured, hard working, and thoroughly prepared') and in the Legal 500 where she is described as being 'calm under pressure, showing great empathy with clients'. Frances has specialised in children law for 25 years, in both public and private law work.
Frances has extensive experience in public law cases, being regularly briefed by local authorities, parents and guardians, both with and without a junior.  She has particular expertise in the following areas, regularly appearing in the High Court to deal with the following:-

  •  cases of alleged child sexual abuse, historic and recent;
  • cases involving vulnerable witnesses and the evidence of children;
  • cases involving the evaluation of police, local authority and medical investigations;
  • cases of severe physical injury or death, where the medical evidence is complex, in particular so called ‘shaken baby syndrome’, factitious or induced illness, fractures;
  • allegations of smothering; sudden infant death;
  • allegations of domestic abuse, intimidation, forced marriage; child trafficking;
  • allegations of witchcraft/ritual abuse  

She has a strong interest in all aspects of the law of adoption, having appeared in numerous leading cases in the Court of Appeal.  
She has an interest in the role of the media in family cases, and regularly advises on the merits of applying to restrict or allow reporting of matters concerning children and their parents.
Frances has a strong private law practice dealing with international and domestic relocation cases,  surrogacy,  parental responsibility,  contact and residence.   She is the co-author of a book on Relocation published in 2013 (second edition 2015) by Jordans.

Frances is also now qualified as an Arbitrator in Private Law Children Proceedings. This skill is increasingly in demand in the more straight forward disputes between parents since it provides an alternative to issuing proceedings in the Magistrates.

Frances is always happy to advise on the merits of appeal. She regularly appears in the Court of Appeal and has acted for the Guardian in two cases in the Supreme Court

Frances is co-author (with Damian Garrido QC and Rob George of Harcourt Chambers, and Anna Worwood of Penningtons Manches) of 'Relocation: A Practical Guide' published by Jordans in 2013, with a foreword by Lady Justice Black. This publication is now in its second edition, published in 2015.
Frances is the co-author of a book on private law 'Contact: the New Deal' (Jordans 2006), and on the 'Public Law Outline' (Jordans 2008). She has written and lectured extensively on the law of relocation, including an article with Dr. Robert George; ‘International Relocation: Do we stand alone? [2010] Fam Law 63'
She regularly gives lectures for Butterworth’s, Jordan’s and the Association of Lawyers for Children, on a range of topics including non-accidental injury and expert evidence,  privacy in the family courts, relocation, shared residence and contact.
Frances is Chair of the Family Law Bar Association (FLBA) and a former national committee member of both the FLBA and the Association of Lawyers for Children.
In the last year Frances has appeared in numerous cases in the High Court and the Court of Appeal.  Frances now has a fast developing practice in Hull and the Humberside region, having accepted an offer from these Chambers to become a door tenant with effect from March 2017. She has recently led Naomi Madderson in a lengthy High Court case and finds herself in demand to lead in new cases that are both challenging and complex as the Family Team continues to grow.
Specific examples of recent cases before joining Wilberforce Barristers include successfully defending a mother against allegations she had smothered and killed two of her children and applying for a reporting restriction order in the same case, successfully defending a mother accused of sexually abusing her daughters, successfully defending a young father accused of sexually abusing his step-daughter, defending parents in several cases where they were alleged to have caused death by shaking, representing a mother who had been forced into marriage and was repeatedly assaulted by her husband and other relatives, representing a 15 year old girl who was the subject of an illegal adoption, representing the local authority in a case where foster parents wished to prevent an adoption, representing a father in proceedings following an informal surrogacy arrangement, and representing a father who was alleged to have tampered with life-preserving equipment being used by his infant daughter.

  • A & B (Findings against Social Worker) [2016] EWFC 68
  • Re JS (Disposal of Body) [2016] EWHC 2859 (Fam)
  • Re S (Children) [2016] EWCA Civ 1090
  • Re W (Secure Accommodation) [2016] EWCA Civ 804
  • Re A-C (A Child) [2013] EWCA Civ 1321 (Appeal against fact-finding decision)
  • In the matter of L-R (Children) [2013] EWCA Civ 1129  (Contempt of court in public law proceedings)
  • Re E (A Child) [2013] EWHC 2413  (Application for leave to withdraw care proceedings after lengthy fact finding hearing, and consideration given to circumstances of emergency removal)
  • Re L (A Child) [2013] EWCA Civ  489   (Interim Care Order: Removal) 
  • In the matter of L & B (Children) [2013] UKSC 9  (Circumstances in which a judge who has announced her decision can change her mind).
  • Re AA (A Child) 2012 EWHC 2647 (High Court) 
  • Re M (Children) 2012 EWCA Civ 1710
  • Re N (Religion: Jehovah's Witness) 2012 2 FLR 917 (High Court)
  • Re R (Care Proceedings: Causation) 2011 2 FLR 1384
  • Re A (Application for Reporting Restriction Order) 2011  1 FLR 239
  • O v Coventry City Council (Adoption) 2012 1 FLR 302
  • Re N (Recognition of Foreign Adoption Order) 2010 1 FLR 1102
  • B (Children) [2011] EWCA Civ 729 (Court of Appeal)
  • Re S-B (Children) [2009] UKSC 17, 2010 1 FLR 1161 (Supreme Court)
  • Re L-A (Care: Chronic Neglect) [2009] EWCA Civ 822, 2010 1 FLR 80
  • Re L (Shared Residence Order) [2009] EWCA Civ 20, [2009] 2 FLR 1157
  • Re A; Coventry City Council v CC and A [2007] EWCA Civ 1383, [2008] 1 FLR 959 (Court of Appeal)
  • Re N and N [2007] Fam Law 121, [2008] FLR forthcoming (Court of Appeal)
  • Re H (Care Order: Appropriate Local Authority) [2004] 1 FLR 534 (Court of Appeal)
  • Re P (Care Orders: Injunctive Relief) [2000] 2 FLR 385 (High Court)
  • Re O (Adoption: Withholding Consent) [1999] 1 FLR 451 (Court of Appeal)
  • Re M (Adoption or Residence Order) [1998] 1 FLR 570 (Court of Appeal)
  • Oxfordshire County Council v L and F [1997] 1 FLR 235
  • S v Oxfordshire County Council [1993] 1 FLR 452 (High Court)