Advocacy for Family Lawyers – July 2024

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Trainer: Nicola Wallace

View Nicola's Bio
Meet Our Faculty

Course date: 1-2 July 2024, London (In-person)


“No matter how thin you slice it, there will always be two sides.”

  – Baruch Spinoza (Dutch Philosopher)

Great advocates are not all necessarily born that way.  Whilst history may identify a few great trial advocates, for the majority, advocacy is a skill that can be honed and polished – and the learning never ends.

The course

Over two days, after examination of advocacy theory and case preparation skills, each delegate will undertake a practice First Directions Appointment, an FDR and an advocacy role in a private law children trial.   Using detailed scenarios that replicate the complexities of real cases, the course focusses on thorough preparation for court, arbitration or tribunal.

In a supportive environment, you will be able to safely practice various advocacy techniques, debate the pros and cons of asking questions in alternative ways and without doubt going forward, you will likely approach your case preparation differently from the start.

The aims of this course are to provide insight into the art of persuasion, the power of words and to focus closely on thorough preparation for court – building confidence at every turn.

Whether you are a trainee, newly qualified or at senior level, taking time out to critically assess your skills of persuasion at court will not be time wasted.

So, bring an enquiring mind, courage to try out new ideas and your little black book!

The trainer

The trainer is Nicola Wallace, a barrister at 4 PB.  Nicola was a solicitor and partner for many years, before transferring to the Bar in 2006.  She therefore brings a unique blend of wide experience to this training.

View Nicola’s Bio

Course programme



Day One 1. What is advocacy?
2. The Art of persuasion
3. A strategy for case preparation applicable to all types of cases
4. Skeleton arguments
5. A reminder of the basics: court rules and etiquette
6. First Appointment (Financial Remedy) advocacy exercises
7. Trial preparation in detail
Day Two Advocacy exercise: FDR – Financial Remedy
Advocacy exercise: Private Children Trial: contact dispute
Examination in Chief
Feedback and final questions

Feedback from delegates

“Nicola is a fantastic trainer. Very engaging. The course has been extremely helpful, even as a newly qualified.  A real confidence boost”
“Very useful exercises. Even for more experienced advocates. Useful hints.”
“An enlightening experience! An amazingly helpful course!”
“Extremely useful and very much enjoyed”
“Massive thank you! This has been an amazing course.  I feel so much more confident, more prepared and less overwhelmed(Groups of 3!!)”

Please note

All pre-course materials and exercises will be sent electronically to delegates nearer the course date.

In order to get the best out of the attended part of the course, we ask that you please work through pre-course materials and exercises, prepare thoroughly and be ready to take part on both days.

Please bring your laptop/tablet and writing materials for additional notetaking, as materials for the first day will be circulated that morning.

Any queries, please contact:


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  • AFL2001 | 2024-JUL-1 | Member Price £600


  • AFL2001 | 2024-JUL-1 | Non-Member Price £720