james pirrie

Melbourne House, 46 Aldwych, Holborn, London WC2B4LL
London, London WC2B 4LL
United Kingdom
Office Phone: (+44) 20 7420 5000
Member since 2004
Membership Type: IACP


Lawyer, Solicitor, Mediator, Other

I am committed to finding fair solutions to family issues. I strive to achieve this by caring, by listening, by understanding and by working with vision with clients to help them reach their own resolutions – where possible - together. From my wide experience of different approaches towards dispute resolution, I firmly believe that collaborative law offers the best way forward, for many.

A trained mediator, arbitrator and a Resolution accredited specialist lawyer, I am also a past member of the IACP board and sat for 25 years on the board of Resolution, the 6,000 strong professionals' organisation in England&Wales.

Area(s) of Practice: Collaborative Law, Family Law, Financial, Mediation, "one lawyer -together", arbitration
License(s): Solicitor (Law Society of England& Wales) ~Collaborative professional (Resolution) ~Arbitrator (Chartered Institute of Arbitrators) ~Mediator (National Family Mediation) ~Child consultation (Resolution), Child inclusive mediator ~Civil & Commercial mediator (ADRgroup)

Professional Activities

Resolution -- former Board member ~Resolution -- CSA committee ~Resolution -- DR committee ~Resolution Parenting after parting committee ~IACP former board member ~Regular contributor on family law topics to national and professional media ~Regularly publish articles in major legal reference works. ~Author/ co-author/ contributor to 1)Safe Routes to Child Support 2)Guide to schedule 1 of the Children Act 3)Emergency procedures, a guide 4)Law Society's ADR handbook 5)Family law Protocol 6) Cohabitation looseleaf (contributor) 7) Encyclopaedia of forms and precs (contributor) 8) "red book" contributor 9)tax implications of family law breakdown (contributor) 10)claims under schedule1 (2023)

Professional Education

Accredited Mediator
Accredited specialist – (cohabitation and advanced financial provision; currently set the child financial paper)
Financial Planning certificate
CII G10 qualification
Mediator with Direct child consultation qualification (Resolution)
Civil & Commercial mediator (ADR Group)
Arbitrator (Institute of Family Law Arbitrators), qualified in children and money cases


Unique in the UK and independent of the collaborative movement (no-one here had heard of it then), Family Law in Partnership was established in 1995 to provide a holistic approach, combining counselling and legal skills in its mediation and law-based work. It was only later, in 2003, that we were instrumental in bringing collaborative law to the UK. We saw this as a better way to offer clients the multidisciplinary services from which, we believe, better solutions emerge. It now has a fourteen collaborative professionals (lawyers and coaches) each of whom are also mediators and four of whom are also arbitrators. In 2008, I witnessed the inspirational work of parenting coach, Christina McGhee and started the long haul of integrating her work (which aims to root children at the centre of the decision-making process) into the practice of family law professionals in England. I am committed to the promotion of the voice of the child in family law resolutions and am trained to meet with children and it is part of my practice. Whilst I promote the collaborative approach, there are circumstances where outcomes have to be imposed and I have acted in a number of groundbreaking court cases, although increasingly, I see arbitration as providing a better way of resolving the stuck case that needs imposed outcomes and/ or application of legal principle.