A family lawyer with more than a decade’s experience, former Spear’s Rising Star Katie Longmate focuses on financial disputes arising from divorce and separation, frequently of an international nature.
She often prepares and advises on pre- and post-nuptial agreements, and for couples planning to cohabit. She also works to resolve arrangements for children, and has a particular interest in relocation cases.
Clients range from HNW professionals and international entrepreneurs to families of inherited fortune seeking to protect their position pre or post marriage — clients often shocked by a system in ‘complete disarray’ on multiple levels. ‘There is often a significant difference between what is really important to the client, often on an emotional level, and what the court will consider important,’ she says. ‘The challenge is to try to bridge the gap in a cost-effective and pragmatic way.’
Longmate’s deep experience allows her to offer advice across the full spectrum of family law, but she has developed a strong practice in international child relocation cases and those involving arrangements for children, including surrogacy cases.
Clients have praised her assistance in ‘extremely emotional’ times, offering a service that combines ‘skill and professionalism’ with a ‘considerable but determined’ approach to seeing matters through to resolution.
The trained mediator and collaborative family lawyer (she is also a member of Resolution, the organisation of family lawyers committed to non-confrontational divorce) also sees the family justice system coming under increased pressure to be more transparent: ‘Reporting is often not representative of what is happening on the ground, with the majority of cases being settled out of court,’ she says.
‘While justice needs to be both done and seen to be done, there is a requirement to balance any intrusion with the family’s right to privacy.’
The firm covers a broad range of family law matters. Longmate’s notable cases include reported cases of Re L (Residence: Jurisdiction) and the Court of Appeal case of W (Children) regarding relocation, and the leading High Court decision in JKN v JCN regarding jurisdiction of a transatlantic divorce.