Success Stories

Here are some of our many success stories

My Father left me in Colin’s capable hands when he had to leave me to go abroad for 12 months on business.
After 18 months of sky high legal fees that I could no longer afford, I had no choice but to represent myself and take on my former husbands’ London based legal team with the help of Colin Brealey. This was a hugely daunting task but one that I immediately felt was attainable with the help of Colin. Colin gave me the confidence and support that I needed to stand in Court and fight for myself and my children.
I can only describe my marriage and my divorce as something out of a horror movie. My divorce was a hugely complex case, extending over 3 years with countless files of litigation including 2 Non Molestation Orders and an extensive Police chronology. The litigation included details of the domestic violence I endured, my former husband’s drug and alcohol addiction, children’s care issues, complex financials and extensive Police involvement.
Colin took it all in his stride and took time to read through the extensive history and made sure he was familiar with all the previous orders and applications. Colin assisted me at all times in the preparation of applications on email and over the phone, and in person at all the numerous hearings.
Colin always arrived early prior to the hearings which gave me great comfort as it allowed us time to meet and talk through everything before we went in. I was always terribly nervous and anxious but Colin was great at calming me and preparing me and focusing me for each hearing, particularly when I was facing counsel.
As well as helping me with all the litigation and hearings. Colin would always contact me to hear how any meetings went with the Police as well as when the children spent time with their appointed guardian.
Sadly, my divorce was one of threat and violence. Although I had panic buttons in my home - If I was ever in fear or panic, then I knew I could call Colin for help or advice 24/7.
Colin was, and continued to be, a huge support to me and my family throughout the ongoing proceedings. Colin has a vast knowledge and extensive experience in the legal field. As well as this, Colin has been an emotional support to me through the most painful and traumatic years of my life.
– Ms G. (Berkshire)
Hi Colin, just a quick line to wish you a merry Christmas and happy new year. I would also like to thank you for your help with my case for my child arrangements order for my children.
I was completely out of my depth in this case with my ex partner and her solicitor and was basically getting wiped the floor with. That's when I decided to contact families need fathers who put me on to you. After speaking with you, you came to Lincolnshire and took charge of my case for me, liaised with my ex partners solicitor and after two hearings got the outcome we wanted.

I can't thank you enough for your help and professionalism, it's been 6 months now and everything's going well, the children are happy and we are having a great time together making memories.

All the best.
– Mr B. (Lincolnshire)
I would not hesitate to recommend Jeff to anyone attending family court, he has the Knowledge, experience and integrity to help you achieve your goals. He worked at very short notice for me in an efficient manner both before and during the court hearing, making the oppositions solicitor look sloppy by comparison. Very pleased that I contacted him and would do so again if required.
– Mr K. (Surrey)
Colin has been of great support over recent months, offering excellent advice and helping me to stay focussed. His assistance at court was exemplary (certainly gave the opposition many things to think about), kept the objectives on track, both the District Judge and oppositions barrister commended him for his contribution. Oh and ultimately with his help all my objectives were met and indeed surpassed!
– Mr M. (Warwickshire)
Thanks Jeff for all the advice and help leading through a tricky set of court cases against the mother of my child who, a solicitor herself was determined to make it as hard as possible to get access to my son. I originally went through a family law solicitor before a chance conversation lead me to look up McKenzie friends on the net. Going down this route and choosing Jeff's company was the best decision I made. Not only was the rate substantially more expensive via the solicitor compared to Jeff, but the high level of advice and general passion for the job was obvious from the start with him. Previously access was sporadic and when it fitted in with the mother's life, now I am now building up a great relationship with my son with alternate weekends and holidays. I have no hesitation in recommending Family Law Decisions to anyone who was in the same position as I was and looking to get regular access to their children.
– Mr L. (Greater Manchester)
I am writing this to express my sincere delight, happiness and any other fantastic word you could add of the assistance provided by Mr Colin Brealey regarding my family matters in the county court.
 
I had pre Colin paid out over £10,000 in solicitor fees and got no where fast, i contacted Colin after he was recommended by a friend in a similar situation. It was at very late notice but Colin assured me he would assist with all my legal paper work and proposals regarding my two children. Colin contacted me at a suitable time for both of us but then stayed up via phone contact till 02:00AM!!!!!
 
UNBELIEVABLE but yes he did, he managed to complete all my necessary paper work for the court on such late notice due to my late contact but he stayed awake completing this as the next day was the court trial. Colin also attended court in person as my McKenzie friend and assisted me in what i needed to do to get the desired result.
 
I was awarded the children more favourably than my ex partner and i feel, no i know it was down to Colin’s help, i will be ever in his debt as my children are my world and having them taken away by a court and their mother was the single most worst thing i have ever had to experience in my life.
– Mr G. (Leicestershire)
Without Jeff would I be seeing my daughter?
Probably not.

I see my daughter now regularly, go on holidays with her, she plays with her baby sister, sees her grandparents and I am seeing her grow up.

Jeff tells you it as it and not just what you want to hear, unlike so many solicitors I encountered.

He has many helpful tips on how to deal with the whole situation and provides thorough support

I would highly recommend using his services.
– Mr B. (Birmingham)
I first came in to contact with Colin Brealey, through McKenzie Friends, having not seen my daughter for over 9 months and having been to the family court 3 times. At this stage a section 7 report was being completed by Cafcass.

Colin made himself readily available at the end of the phone or by email and always gave good, practical advice. It was clear that his knowledge of family law was vast. He attended the next court hearing with me, arrived early and, again, gave good, clear and practical advice on how we should proceed. In addition to the advice on how to proceed at the hearing, he also advised me on how to contact my daughter’s GP and nursery to ask for details of matters relating to her and gave me copies of template letters for this purpose.

Thanks to Colin’s vast knowledge of family law and his professional manner, he was able to negotiate with my ex-partner’s solicitor resulting in a final order which I was very happy with indeed. Colin continues to be available to me for advice by email or phone and I would not hesitate to contact him in the future if I had any further problems regarding contact with my daughter. I would also highly recommend Colin to anyone experiencing problems with regard to contact with their child or children.
– Mr K. (Suffolk)
Jeff, your experience of the English Family Justice System is second to none and you have been invaluable in helping me achieve 50/50 contact for my daughter. Thank you very much for all your help and advice.
– Mr B. (London)
Almost a year ago contact broke down between myself and my ex partner. As a result of this I lost regular and agreeable contact with my now 3yr old son. Although I didn’t want to have to go through the legal channels, after about 3 months this appeared inevitable.

Although I had an idea of what I had to do next with regard to starting legal proceedings I knew I needed help. I visited my local Families Need Fathers meeting and met Mr Colin Brealey who chairs the monthly meetings.

Right from the start I found Colin to be helpful, professional and above all – totally child focussed. Colin advised and continues to advise me, along with many others within the Families Need Fathers meetings. Seeing Colin’s professionalism, I decided to accept his offer of assistance to help me through the legal process as a Mckenzie Friend. - This has got to be one of the best decisions I have ever made!
Colin advised me throughout the whole process – which in my opinion was much better than any solicitor I have ever had to deal with previously.

As I have already explained, Colin is totally child focussed and therefore deals with any issue in an unbiased and morally proper way rather than one of financial benefit to himself. That is evident when my costs for everything came to approximately 10% of a similar case I was involved with almost a decade earlier.

In short, I would have no hesitation whatsoever in strongly recommending Mr Colin Brealey to represent anyone who required a professional service for any matters involving children & family.
– Mr M. (Staffordshire)
Dear Jeff, Thank you very much for the notes and assisting me today. I'm very grateful to you for your support and advice. I am so glad that you were with me. You helped me get the result I hoped for.
– Mrs M. (Hampshire)
On the advice of my McKenzie (the excellent Jeff Botterill), we appealed successfully to a Circuit Judge - who also then reserved the case to her - and the whole momentum of the process shifted, ultimately to my (and my son's) great benefit...excellent level of parenting time, SRO, etc.
– Mr T. (London)
Colin is very professional and intuitive, combine this with a great ability for problem solving and his excellent skills in diplomacy, he is a force to be reckoned with. He has a keen eye for detail and can resolve any situation that is put in front of him. He is always ready to go the extra mile to ensure he delivers and is one of those very rare dependable individuals.
– Mr H. (Staffordshire)
Following separation it because impossible for me to secure parenting time with my young son. His mother wouldn’t allow him to spend more than two nights away with me, which made taking holidays impossible.

I met Jeff at my local FNF meeting. I was immediately struck not only by Jeff’s technical expertise but also by the calm, measured and authoritative way in which he gave others help and support.

I didn’t even bother looking for a solicitor, I engaged Jeff as my McKenzie Friend. He helped me file an application to court and draft a position statement. He subsequently helped support me in court.

In court Jeff was a rock-steady mentor, providing pragmatic and clear advice at just the right time. He negotiated with the other side and his clear familiarity with the system filled me with confidence in the waiting before the hearing. Importantly he had the confidence of the judge, who explicitly remarked on Jeff’s CV with obvious admiration.

In the hearing, following a rocky start (the judge thought my suggested residence schedule was too much for a 2 year old...and lots of allegations in mum's position statement - all ignored by Cafcass and the judge) the judge supported an amended schedule Jeff and I proposed; Jeff was then instrumental in hammering out a brief but prescriptive Shared Residence Order by consent.

The mother had applied for sole residence and proposed one Wednesday overnight a fortnight and every other weekend Friday to Sunday 6pm for contact. No holidays, other than alternate Christmas day.

I ended up with an SRO by consent, every Wednesday overnight and every other weekend Friday nursery pick up to Monday nursery drop off. I also got half of all holidays and alternate Christmas and Easter.

I am confident that with Jeff’s help, support and guidance I got the best outcome for my son; the long weekends and holidays in particular will help immensely in his relationship with me, his grandparents and his young cousin. I am sure I wouldn’t have secured such a good outcome for my son without Jeff’s calming influence, help and guidance.
– Mr M. (London)
Court proceedings between my son's mother and me had been ongoing for a year before I contacted Family Law Decisions. The case had become quite complex, with social services, a legal guardian, and other expert witnesses becoming involved. The way things were going, there was a distinct possibility that I would lose touch with my son. With the help of Family Law Decisions over the past year, I have been able to turn my case around and my application for Parental Responsibility and Shared Residence has now been ordered.

Family Law Decisions provided me with a McKenzie friend (Jeff Botterill), advice on the process, help working with the various experts, and other ongoing support, maintaining their child-focused ethos throughout. They clearly have extensive experience of the family law process, and they are sensitive to the effects that it all can have on a 'litigant in person'. I am hugely grateful to the support that Family Law Decisions have provided in helping me stay in touch with my son, I could not have done it without them. I wholeheartedly recommend them to anyone seeking a child-focused resolution.
– Dr P. (Surrey)
Jeff thank you so much for today and all your help and advice I am over the moon with the outcome and couldn't of done it without you you made me feel at ease and confident in everything I was doing and I can not thank you enough for helping me through today. Hope you have a lovely evening and like I said thank you again.
– Mr D. (London)
After using a solicitor and barrister for a couple of years (and getting nowhere). I have found Jeff’s knowledge of the court processes and family law invaluable in progressing my court case for contact with my two boys.

Whenever we have been in court Jeff has always been fully prepared for the appearance and the suggestions/advice he has given me has helped me set the agenda in court. Jeff is measured in his approach and calm at all times whether in or out of court.
– Mr S. (London)
I contacted Jeff and explained my situation with the sudden notification of the lodging of an Application for Leave To Remove in the middle of child arrangement proceedings. He did listen and was calm which gave me comfort. As he questioned me about my case I felt Jeff knew what he was talking about. We agreed for me to send him all the files and evidence and my rough draft and he gave me a date for him to provide me a comprehensive statement in response to the LTR. This was about 2 weeks before my deadline so gave me plenty of time to check and learn more. Indeed, Jeff's statement was effective. He was there responding to questions no doubt about it! I have experienced a solicitor that I have had to chase up for updates. I am very happy with Jeff's service – You get an answer by email or on the phone definitely.
– Mr F. (London)
Hi Jeff, Just to say thankyou for your support at the hearing your advice was really helpful and your knowledge in legal matters was very useful.
– Ms L. (London)
Hi Jeff,

On behalf of myself and my family We would like to thank you for all of your assistance yesterday. Your guidance throughout, and the presentation of the documents was first class. Restoring contact with ******* was the best Xmas present we could have hoped for.

We had a get together last night but at the weekend we can have an even better one with our *******.

Thanks again.
– Mr H. (Manchester)
Hi Jeff, how are you I hope you are well. Thank you again for your support and help yesterday. I couldn't have done it without you.
– Ms H. (London)
My son and I enlisted the support of Colin from the start of the legal process that was instigated in order for him to have contact with his daughter, Colin’s advice and support through each stage was invaluable and this lead ultimately to a court order that gave him everything that he set out to achieve.
I firmly believe that this positive result was achieved through Colin’s advice and more specifically through his negotiating skills at the final hearing as this made a huge impact on the final outcome. I would recommend Colin Brealey to anyone.
– Mr B. (Northamptonshire)
I highly recommend Jeff Botterill to anyone involved in family court matters. His ultra-sharp advice proved to be very helpful. I was particularly amazed how good he was at multi-tasking whilst I was cross-examining: he took accurate notes, prompted new questions and drafted submissions, all at the same time and equally well. Representing myself for the first time at a full-day hearing was emotionally difficult, but his help was reassuring and calming. Thank you Jeff!
– Dr (Ms C.) London
Hi Jeff. Thank you for the notes, and for supporting me like you have over the past few months - We really got the outcome we were hoping for. You do a sterling job, really supported and guided me through the most difficult days and time of my life.
Thank you so much again.
– Mr H. (Worcestershire)
Result! Jeff helped me to win my Final Hearing so my daughter can now come and stay at my house. Straight talking and knowledgable he was better than my previous barrister and around a quarter of the price. I wish I had known about McKenzie Friends a year ago and would recommend Jeff to any father going through the slow pain that is the UK family court system.
– Mr S. (Bristol)
Having been given notice that my ex-partner was applying to the Family Courts to relocate our daughter to Australia, I knew I had a serious, potentially life changing, problem on my hands but I was instantly certain I would be defending myself. Previous experience I had garnered in the courts was nothing short of depressing and had left me eminently reluctant to be legally represented. Aware that various historical incidents provided for a strong defence, I simply did not trust any solicitor to care enough to collate and disclose the wealth of information I had at my disposal in the manner which best suited my case, nor did I have the funds it would have cost me to commission them to do so.

Previous experience had also taught me that attending court is an overwhelming and daunting experience so I was conscious that I needed some form of guidance to see me through to the end. Which is when I found Family Law Decisions and in particular, Jeff Botterill, whom I knew straight away was the person I wanted by my side during the whole process. Jeff is extremely calm and reassuring with a knowledge base that is immediately evident. It also helped to learn that once upon a time he had been in my shoes and could recognise the anguish and anxiety I was feeling.

Jeff Botterill is simply a genius and I’m utterly convinced my life would not be so wonderful now if it were not for him. From the moment he agreed to assist me, I knew I was in great hands and a lot of the tension which inevitably builds up seemed to dissipate there and then. Once we got started, Jeff was great at stripping the emotion away and helping you to focus on what is important and ignoring what is irrelevant, as it is very easy to get caught up in the bitterness and unjust nature of everything. He keeps you thinking straight.
He is also a master at drawing up any court documents that will be required along the way and is exceptional at articulating every point of your defence. I was truly blown away when I saw my initial position statement – It summed up perfectly in 10 or 12 sentences what I had been frustratingly screaming about for years. A work of art.

Long story short, my ex-partner dropped her application completely after the first hearing and I was able to amend the existing contact order we had in place to provide for more time with my daughter at weekends and school holidays. The result is my relationship with my daughter is as good now as it’s ever been and I feel that I have been treated fairly by the courts. This is all thanks to Jeff.

I would recommend Jeff in an instant. He really is a godsend.
– Mr P. (London)
Jeff, good luck for the future. You're a credit to what you do, very skilled and kind. Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year.
– Mr L. (Norfolk)
I'd like to take this opportunity to thank Colin from the bottom of my heart for his assistance with this case. Colin has been a rock for me and his advice and guidance has been flawless throughout. Without his help I could not have reached the agreement and result that has been achieved today. Thank you so much to Colin and Family Law Decisions for helping me conclude what has been the worst two years of my life. Finally I can move on with my beloved son firmly by my side. The weight that has been lifted from my shoulders today I cannot begin to describe.

Once again I am indebted to the support that Colin has given.
– Mr H. (Birmingham)
I have recently been assisted by Colin Brealey at my Final Hearing at court. Colin gave me a tremendous amount of time and support building my case prior to the hearing at short notice. Not only was he dedicated to his work he was also very supportive and enthusiastic . He fully understands the court process and gave me great advice regarding how to present myself within court. Without Colin's knowledge and negotiating skills I believe I would not have achieved such a successful outcome with my case. He understands the importance of equal parenting and gives his upmost to support families. I would highly recommend Colin to anybody and would not hesitate to ask for his assistance again.
– Mr C. (Derbyshire)
I used Colin Brealey McKenzie Friend for my recent court appearances in relation to seeing my son again, as contact had stopped.
Thanks to Colin and his in depth knowledge of this particular field of family law I was able to get a child arrangements order for regular contact with my son with no risk of my sons mother interfering.
I highly recommend Colin Brealey and his services and also Families Need Fathers, a charity who put me in touch with Mr Brealey.
Many Thanks for your support over the last 6 months.
– Mr A. (Leicestershire)
I came to meet Jeff for a urgent matter of leave to remove abroad. On this kind of complex cases I believe emotions make it really hard to focus and see the right angles of approach. Jeff has been able to break things down for me and bring the focus on the children's welfare. His knowledge of the law and experience in court have been crucial on my case. In a really short time he has been able to understand the problem and propose solutions.

Despite the fact I wasn't able to get a barrister, Jeff and his associates have been able to bring my case forward, and defend my position in a way a barrister probably wouldn't have, and for a very affordable cost.

I recommend Jeff to anyone facing legal family issues and wish to have tailor made defence.
– Mr G. (London)
Having spent thousands of pounds with solicitors and barrister's in court over a battle to see my children, I ran out of money but wanted to continue with the proceedings. I was advised to look for a Mckenzie friend, I found Jeff Botterill. He was honest, clear and very helpful. He produced brilliant statements and on the day of court he gave me lots of support and guidance. I wish I had found Jeff sooner!
– Mr M. (Surrey)
The service Jeff provided me in the very difficult situation, was second to none. I may have been paying for a service but I feel indebted to Jeff. – A very positive result for both of my kids.
– Mr P. (Greater Manchester)
Colin Brealey has been a massive support throughout our recent dealings with the family courts.
 
My case began as a relatively simple one, seeking to extend my shared residence of my children to include one midweek overnight stay during term time, rather than simply taking them out for tea after school and returning them to their mother.
 
Things became more complex when false allegations of violence against the children were made by the children’s mother against my fiancée. Social Services intervened, with both my fiancée and I unable to see the children for a period of time whilst investigations took place. Social Services thankfully saw through the allegations and determined that my fiancée posed no risk to the children.
 
Throughout the entire case, from drafting the initial application to court, accompanying me at court, drafting position statements, advising on dealing with social services, to negotiating a consent order with the other side’s solicitor, Colin’s assistance has been instrumental in ensuring that the final outcome not only met my initial objectives, but in fact exceeded them.
 
Colin has performed all of these services professionally and to an extremely high standard. I have encountered quite a few solicitors and barristers over the years in the course of mine and my fiancées dealings with the family courts. I would place Colin as at least the equal of the best of those legal professionals.
 
I should also make mention of Jeff Botterill, who deputised when Colin was unavailable. Like Colin, Jeff also provided a highly professional service, and gave me confidence when appearing in court.
 
I will forever owe these gentlemen a debt of gratitude for their assistance. I have no hesitation in recommending the services of Colin and Jeff.
– Mr T. (Merseyside)
Calling Family Law Decisions was the best decision I ever made. I was in my third year of court cases and had used barristers for previous court appearances but was given poor advice and always felt disappointed, questioning which "side" they were working for. Two days before I was due in court (again), I rang Jeff Botterill and immediately, after having chatted at length about my court history, I felt a huge sense of relief knowing that I could now put my future legal battles in the capable hands of Jeff and his colleague Colin Brealey.

I have had the pleasure of working with Jeff and Colin, both highly knowledgeable and professional, they helped me remain calm under extremely difficult circumstances, without them supporting me in the background with all the court statements and by my side in court, I would have fallen apart. Their ongoing support has been overwhelming and this type of first class service is something you do not get using a firm of solicitors. I feel indebted to you both, thank you.

My advice to anybody looking at this website, pick up the phone, it will be your best decision that you have ever made too.
– Ms H. (Berkshire)
I have for the support and advice from Jeff invaluable. I decided to act as a litigant in person for a combination of financial reasons but also because I wanted to maintain control of my case and ensure the best outcome for my children. Initially I did this on my own and soon ran into difficulties (despite being a confident person in a profession which involves public speaking and analyzing information).

Having Jeff’s support has helped due to his: knowledge of legal matters; ability to prepare clear concise statements; and quick thinking in the court room. But its not just these knowledge and skills – he combines a supportive understanding of a very difficult and upsetting situation with a clear headed willingness to tell you when he think such emotions risk making you say or do unhelpful things. Thanks to Jeff’s support I have seen my children for the first time in a couple of years and am awaiting a more permanent contact order to be put in place.
– Mr C. (Hampshire)
Jeff is an excellent MF. During the final hearing, in which I had to face my abusive ex husband, Jeff's knowledge and professionalism gave me the strength to stay calm and confident. He is very upfront and honest with the merits of your case and where there may be problems which means that you go into the session feeling like there are no surprises that can appear. Jeff was so good in preparing my closing submission as he was able to get to the main points of my complex case and put forward suggestions and justifications for my arguments. I felt safe in his capable hands and would highly recommend him to any woman going through the family court system

Thanks a million again for yesterday, the notes were great and I will be pursuing this transcription of the judgment.

All the very best
– Ms K. (London)
FLD provided me with expert McKenzie Friend support to achieve a contact order that met all of my needs. Specifically, Jeff and Colin provided me with expert support to help me navigate the complexities of the law involved in dealing with children and families during a particularly traumatic stage of my life. Before discovering FLD I had spoken to a local solicitor who proclaimed that they dealt in family law but in a short discussion with them it was obvious that whilst they understood the legal system that needed to be followed they lacked the understanding of tactics and strategies that need to be employed to effect a successful result in my case. Of course, solicitors would also have been more expensive but more importantly I feel that they would not have approached my problems with the warmth and humanity that was offered by FLD. I also believe if I had used solicitors it would have taken much longer to achieve the outcome I was after.
 
I would recommend FLD without hesitation.
– Mr E. (Surrey)
Dear Jeff. Thank you for writing such a good position statement. I was really pleased at how thorough you were in highlighting all the important points that needed to be brought to the court's attention.
– Mrs K. (Manchester)
I spent approximately 18 months working with Colin as a McKenzie friend.
Before working with Colin I had appointed a solicitor and attended family court on two occasions.  Each of these hearings was confusing and frustrating due to the fact that all communication was done between the solicitors involved. Decisions were made by solicitors based on very little understanding of the facts. The process was aimed more at fighting the other party than it was at achieving anything positive by way of contact with my daughter.
 
I contacted Colin in an attempt to remove the adversarial approach from my case and to help me understand a legal situation that was out of control.
From my initial meeting with Colin it was obvious that he knew more about Family Law than any solicitor I had talked with and that he had a constructive approach to arriving at a workable solution.
Colin explained to me in detail how my case was likely to unfold. He outlined what contact was likely to be agreed and helped me to set workable expectations. At each stage of the court process Colin removed all the unnecessary legal details and simplified what had previously been a confused legal battle in to something that was simple to understand and much less stressful to manage. We worked together, making it possible to clarify things for the court, welfare officers and the other party.
Colin focused on what needed to be done to increase contact with my daughter, he was always available to address any concerns or issues that I had and to provide guidance with any court paperwork.
At each hearing Colin sought to find common ground between both parties rather than continuing the arguments that my previous solicitor had perpetuated. This achieved an increase in contact where previously no progress had been made for almost a year.
The depth of practical experience that Colin has, and his positive, constructive approach helped me to arrive at a situation where the other party agreed to much more contact than I would have achieved if I had continued with a solicitor. At the same time Colin kept me focused on my daughter rather than on the other party.
Colin makes Family Law work for families.
– Mr H. (Leicestershire)
Jeff has given me more than any solicitor ever could. Due to Jeff's insight and experience, I have regained a special bond with my daughter. There are no quick fixes with the UK's legal system, but Jeff has taught me to be a better person, whilst winning over the Judges in court. Jeff Botterill is worth his weight in gold and if you care about your children then you will be a lucky person to have Jeff on your side. As long as you listen to his advice you will stand a fantastic chance of being able to be a good parent to your children.
– Mr S. (Surrey)
I cannot thank you enough for all the help, support and advice Colin Brealey, and his contacts, have given during the fight to retain the residency of my children.
I was put in contact with Colin by Families need Fathers as a McKenzie friend, quite late in my case, but he soon helped create a very professional and powerful statement. He was very honest from the start and made it quite clear men don't win these cases very often.
Well we won, and we will all never be able to thank him enough for all he did. He has become quite a popular character round here, and some one who will always be a friend.
From one very happy Dad.
– Mr B. (Staffordshire)
Jeff Botterill is an extremely experienced and client focussed McKenzie Friend, committed to operating in an approachable and down to earth manner, always to the highest standards of quality and professionalism. He gave me a lots of moral support and friendly guidance through my case and I wish I met Jeff before. Top Man!!! I would highly recommend him to anyone for the family court matters.

Many thanks for your services.
– Mr B. (London)
Dear Jeff, Just a quick few lines to thank you again for your support yesterday and the fantastic work you did on our Skeleton Argument. I thought it was exceptional myself but obviously I don’t have legal training. I don’t think you could get a higher accolade than Lord Justice Wood saying that it was a “beautifully crafted" document twice during the hearing.
– Mr B. (London)
Thank you for the amazing support and help you have been over the last few years. I really can't tell you how grateful I have been for everything you did.
Have a lovely weekend!
– Ms F. (London)
Hi Jeff,
Hope you are well?

Apologies for taking so long to write to you. I’d wanted to get in touch and thank you for your service during court proceedings. It was really comforting to have someone there with me that knew the process, was understanding of my situation and wanted the best for myself and child.

I know that you went above and beyond and ended up doing CAFCASS’ job on the day too so really appreciate everything.
Take care
– Ms H. (London)
I have just concluded 14 months of litigation which I would not have managed without the invaluable insight and knowledge that Colin possesses.
 
Having previously had a contact order in place my contact was stopped due to malicious allegations being made against me. I contacted Colin for advice and we set out on a long journey which culminated this last week. 
 
During the 14 months of litigation Colin held my hand every step of the way helping me to navigate the numerous reports and interviews with Cafcass and Social Services. Colin also guided me through a Finding of Fact hearing listed for a whole day after which no findings were against me. 
 
Throughout all the ups and downs Colin has been there for me day and night whenever I have needed him and I cannot thank him enough for all the support he has given me.
 
I no longer consider Colin as just somebody I turn to for advice, but a true friend, thank you.
– Mr V. (Derbyshire)
Colin has given great advice. He has put together my proposals for contact with my children & also a very good Position Statement with great results. I was awarded with my Contact Order. If you need help & advice speak to Colin Brealey, great guy & a job well done.
– Mr C. (Derbyshire)
Colin and his services are highly commendable. He provides expert insight of superb quality and gives direction in the most advisable and realistic way. From my own personal experience he gave perfect commitment and execution to my legal needs and was always there whatever time to answer my call.

He is personable and empathetic, his own life experiences give him an amazing foundation for giving others support. Often in court, the judge would override an actual qualified solicitors offer of legal advice and put Colin as priority when asking legal direction. He is worth every penny and I will always be grateful for his organisation, advice and genuine support.

Thank you Colin.
– Ms A. (Yorkshire)
Hi Jeff, I would like to thank you for your assistance in my case. At least 13 hearings as a LIP 'prior' to seeking your help, and I now have all the contact I wanted! Using a McKenzie friend should be advertised more aggressively as many fathers/children are missing out without it.

You stopped me deviating and gave me the focus and reassurance I needed. Your help with the position statement was invaluable and was definitely a key factor in helping me gain the contact I wanted.
– Mr W. (Surrey)
Colin is an exceptional man. He works tirelessly for Families Need Fathers putting in many hours assisting others. He has built up an incredible knowledge of how our system of law concerning every aspect of child contact operates on a practical level. He has worked through many legal cases giving hope to fathers where there had been no hope of contact before, often against seemingly insurmountable odds and achieving results! I can thoroughly recommend Colin to any person seeking contact with their children through the minefield of the British Courts. As a first port of call I would say speak to Colin for advice rather that spend large sums of money through a lawyer.
– Mr O. (Derbyshire)
Having utilised Colin’s services previously, I had no hesitation in engaging him once again to assist with a new matter. Although I’m now a veteran of over ten court hearings concerning various child-related issues, and was confident of representing myself in court without accompaniment, the assistance Colin gave in advising on the correct application to make to court, drafting the position statements, and helping me focus on how to present the case on the day, helped me achieve the required outcome.
– Mr T. (Merseyside)
Mr Jeff Botterill has assisted us in a family Court matter as our McKenzie friend. We obtained Jeff's details through Families Need Fathers website and have found the advice, support and loyalty to be exemplary.

When we began in the Family Courts we were paying for legal representation in the form of various Solicitors and Barristers, some progress was made but this took some 2 years to achieve at extortionate costs to us.

We approached Jeff to enquire whether he would be able to assist us in the continuing family matter and Jeff confirmed his terms and conditions to us from the outset, we were very happy with all of the details that Jeff passed over to us and we were pleased to have his support.

Jeff has been a lifesaver. Literally. Jeff's knowledge of the process that we have been going through is comprehensive and moreover, Jeff has a unique insight into our particular circumstances and has, on many occasions, offered us his support and advice on how to deal with matters that surround the Court case. This has proved invaluable and has helped us both cope with the process on many occasions.

Jeff's integrity and honesty are outstanding, he is a man amongst men. Jeff had complete compassion for our situation. Jeff has a keen eye for details and is extremely prompt with his responses - which has helped us cope with some stressful situations.

Our only regret is that we did not know of Jeff's existence when our Court proceedings began - we are completely certain that his involvement from the start would have benefitted the matter a great deal and not to mention, save us a considerable amount of money that we had to pay for legal representation.

We have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Jeff to anyone.
– Mr & Mrs H. (Cheshire)
I used Jeff Botterill as my Mckenzie Friend for my case. After experiencing the expense of using a solicitor the initial attraction of using a Mckenzie Friend was the price, however the advice and support I received was invaluable.

Going to court is a nerve racking experience in any situation and representing yourself seems like an extremely daunting task, questions like what to prepare? where to stand? what to say? Were just a few of the things I was concerned about but having Jeff with me gave me the knowledge and confidence to successfully represent myself.

I am now enjoying regular and increasing access to my daughter
– Mr O. (Essex)
Hi Jeff, I just wanted to take the opportunity to thank you for your professionalism and support leading up to and at the final hearing on Wednesday. It was much appreciated.
– Mr P. (London)
Thank you so much to Colin once again for all the help and advice that he gave me.

We are now a happy re-United family I never dreamed possible. I didn't understand the court process, I cannot thank him enough for re uniting my family.

He was helping me write statements and filling in court forms until late at night and put up with my lack of IT knowledge, he is a wonderful guy, cannot thank him enough for what he has done.
– Ms C. (Lincolnshire)
Jeff Botterill is a highly experienced and technically skilled McKenzie Friend with experience at all levels of court, including appeal. Jeff's knowledge of case law and court procedure is impressive. Such knowledge is essential in more complex cases, as is an ability to help construct effective, fact based and child centered arguments. In technical areas of law such as leave to remove, Jeff's name readily comes to mind as someone I can recommend with confidence. I am often asked if I can recommend a McKenzie Friend to assist a parent or grandparent in court, and Jeff Botterill is someone whose name I have no hesitation in putting forward.
– Author and Creator of The Custody Minefield
Hi Colin, I wanted to express my gratitude for the way you assisted myself whilst fighting for joint custody of my children, you were there to talk me through every step of the way and explained everything perfectly. You operate with a courteous and professional approach to the situation that was in hand, I can honestly say I don't think I would of got as far or such superb results without you by my side.

I can hand on heart say that I would recommend you for advice to anyone facing legal difficulties.

Cheers
– Mr H. (Derbyshire)
Jeff Botterill was my McKenzie friend for a Leave to Remove from the Jurisdiction hearing which I was opposing. I was very impressed at the quality of service Jeff provided. He helped prepare a Position Statement to present to my ex-wife's solicitor for negotiation in advance of the final hearing. He was very well prepared for the 2 court appearances (a further directions and a final hearing) and provided case history which won me my request for a Shared Residence Order, which on the advice of her legal team, had been turned down by my ex-wife when presented in the position statement. I think her legal team was rather surprised by the knowledge and case notes that Jeff had provided me in court.

His guidance and support throughout the court hearings was excellent. He put me at ease and gave me the confidence to represent myself. His knowledge of the law and the case history surrounding leave to remove exceeded any that I had heard from the two solicitors that I had used. He is also passionate about the need for both parents in the lives of their children. I would highly recommend Jeff to anyone else looking for a McKenzie friend.
– Mr W. (London)