Top Ten Family Lawyers
A first-choice solicitor for high-flying CEOs, investment bankers, sports stars and entertainers, Catherine Bedford made her name by building Lee & Thompson’s family practice from the ground up. In a major move, she has just brought her entire team to Harbottle & Lewis, known for its privacy work with UK and international royalty.
Bedford is experienced in exposing and defending trusts, and is also rare in her ability to assist fathers in obtaining sole residency orders in their favour. The warm and engaging Canadian isn’t afraid to get tough when necessary, although her emphasis remains on reducing stress and emotional turmoil — a goal furthered by arbitration.
Such soothing hardly aligns with many people’s preconceptions about family lawyers. ‘You’ll almost get this rather hostile response: “How can you do that job? How can you profit from other people’s misery?”’ she says. ‘If I thought I was profiting from misery I couldn’t do it. The way I look at it, someone will arrive in my office in a heap. They are already in a terrible way and I want to help them, I genuinely do — my job is to achieve a resolution.’
One Wall Street veteran was particularly impressed after Bedford took over from another ‘well-regarded’ firm that had ‘made a shambles’ of his partner’s case: ‘She was superlative on all counts… a quick and accurate study, insightful and tactically smart. I would recommend her most strongly.’