Jonathan Jackson

Year of Call: 2013


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Education

BPP Law School, Leeds - BPTC
University of Birmingham – LLB Law


Professional Memberships

FLBA
Northern Circuit


Jonathan joined the Family Team of 18 St John Street Chambers in January 2017 and since then has developed a busy and varied practice, regularly appearing in the Family Court representing local authorities, parents, children and intervenors in both public and private children matters. Jonathan regularly appears in matters before the High Court. Jonathan has experience of representing clients in appeals and providing advice on appeal.

Jonathan has developed a reputation for meticulous preparation of cases and thorough cross examination. As a result, he is regularly instructed to appear in multi-day hearings in relation to allegations of both physical and sexual abuse, representing local authorities pursuing allegations before the court and representing those facing allegations. He has extensive experience of challenging the evidence of professional and lay witnesses, including medical evidence. Jonathan has experience of cross-examining vulnerable witnesses, including those with mental health difficulties and child witnesses.

Jonathan has also developed a busy practice representing children, through their 16.4 Guardians, at finding of fact and final hearings in private law proceedings, often where both parents are litigants in person. Jonathan is therefore adept at dealing with litigants in person.

Jonathan is public access accredited and accepts instructions from members of the public directly where necessary.

Jonathan is also available to deliver talks/seminars regarding various topics relating to Family Law. Jonathan most recently delivered a talk on secure accommodation orders on behalf of Child Concern.

Prior to coming to the Bar, Jonathan worked within the Family Department of a local law firm, developing a specialism of representing clients in Children Act and Family Law Act proceedings. Jonathan also undertook civil work during this time in the capacity of Solicitor’s Agent.

Away from Chambers, Jonathan has a keen interest in travel. He has recently spent time in various cities in the USA, and visited numerous islands in French Polynesia in October 2018.

View Notable Cases

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Re L [2021] – representing a father in a 16 day fact finding and final hearing before HHJ O’Leary.  The father was facing serious allegations of physical and sexual abuse of his 4 year old daughter and her mother and the child had been removed from his care by the Local Authority.  After hearing evidence, the court made no findings against the father and found that the mother had exaggerated comments made by the child and encouraged her to make allegations.  At the end of the lengthy proceedings, the child was returned to the care of the father after 16 months of being in foster care.  The court allowed very limited, and professionally supervised, contact between the child and the mother due to an assessed high risk of future false allegations.

Re L [2020] – representing a father on an application made by local authority foster carers for an Adoption Order relating to his daughter.  The mother applied for discharge of the Care Order upon receipt of the foster carers’ application.  During the course of the proceedings, the mother was assessed, as was a paternal family member put forward  by the father.  The paternal family member’s assessment was positive.   The case involved interesting legal argument about whether and when adoptive care plans should be approved when a family member has been positively assessed.  Expert evidence was required and challenged at the final hearing.  Ultimately, whilst the court found that all parties had acted in good faith and showed enormous dignity throughout the process, it could not approve a plan whereby all legal ties were severed through adoption when positive family assessments had been completed, notwithstanding the length of time the child had been placed with the foster carers (3 years) and the lack of relationship with the family member.  The court dismissed the application for an adoption order and approved the Local Authority’s revised final plan to move the child into the care of the paternal aunt under the existing care order.  The case further involved cultural implications and discussion as the child was black Carribean, placed with white foster carers, whereas the family placement offered a closer cultural match.

Re B [2020] second junior counsel to Rehana Begum in a 13 day finding of fact hearing in the Family Court at Manchester, representing an intervenor accused causing extensive injuries to a 5 month old baby. The court found the child’s mother responsible for all of the injuries and made no adverse findings against the intervenor.

Re O [2019] – representation of a father in care proceedings at a six-day finding of fact hearing in the Family Court at Manchester in which the father made partial admissions in respect of allegations of physical abuse of a child prior to the hearing. The injuries to the child in the case included bruising and multiple rib and leg fractures.

Re H [2019] – representation of an intervenor in care proceedings at a seven-day finding of fact hearing in the Family Court in Manchester. The client was facing allegations of the most serious nature, including the deliberate burning of the subject child.

June [2019] – representation of local authority in care proceedings at a final hearing where the respondent mother was a litigant in person, having dispensed with the services of her solicitors shortly before the hearing.

Representing a child on an application for a secure accommodation order pursuant to s. 25 Children Act 1989, before HHJ Wallwork at the Family Court at Manchester.

July [2018] – representation of the respondent mother at a six-day final hearing at the Family Court in Manchester before Recorder Cains. The client was facing allegations of physical abuse including extensive bruising to the subject child. The court found that the respondent father was within the pool of potential perpetrators along with the mother.

LCC v K [2017] – representing the Local Authority in care and placement proceedings involving historic sexual abuse.

K v RB [2017] – representing the Respondent Mother in a four-day finding of fact hearing involving serious allegations of domestic violence and subsequent final hearing resulting in a ‘no contact’ order being made against the Applicant Father.

S v HG [2017] – successfully opposing the making of an adoption order.

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