John Jackson

Solicitor Since: 1989
Called 2006

A tenacious barrister who has extensive knowledge of domestic abuse cases.

Legal 500 2022 (Tier 1 Child Law - Public & Private)


John Jackson specialises in children law, both public and private, and has been listed in the Legal 500 for the past four years.  He is often involved in cases involving serious allegations of sexual and physical abuse and has particular experience in representing vulnerable parents and parents from different ethnicities.  He is a brave and tenacious advocate in all family courts up to and including the Court of Appeal and is “Not afraid of rolling up his sleeves and taking on a job no matter what.” Legal 500 2014.

John specialises in contentious private law children cases, often with an international factor or issues of ‘control and coercion’.

John has presented acclaimed lectures on the importance of recognising control and coercion in considering arrangements for children and also gives advocacy training.

John previously practiced as a solicitor across Yorkshire and was a partner in two practices in Leeds. He provided regulatory advice and representation in cases involving Ofsted acting for Ofsted itself, child minders, child day care providers, children’s homes on compliance issues, restrictions and cancelation of provision.

John prides himself on being approachable, client-friendly and down to earth.

Areas of Expertise


John has been specialising in family law for 30 years. He regularly undertakes work in Children cases specialising in both Private Law and Public Law work.

He has been described as a ‘tenacious, fearless and thorough advocate particularly adept at thinking on his feet with a good client manner: giving advice in a clear, down to earth style that clients find relatable’.

He provides representation and advice for parents and grandparents in cases over children involving Child Arrangement Orders (residence and contact disputes) with particular expertise in cases involving control and coercion issues, where his clients on more than one occasion after a conference have said that John really does ‘ get it’ when they have described their situation . He is also has expertise in internal and external relocation cases.

Equally he represents and advises clients, parents, children and local authorities in the most difficult and lengthy child abuse, child care and adoption cases.

John has been described as ‘a well-respected member of the local bar who goes out of his way to assist instructing solicitors and lay clients alike. Clients are put at ease by his empathetic and approachable manner and are immediately assured by his detailed preparation in both his written work and court based advocacy. Whilst he provides sensible and pragmatic advice and solutions, he is equally robust in his presentation of cases which end up before the courts’


Regulatory CV

John has for 10 years been providing regulatory advice and representation in cases involving Ofsted. He has acted for Ofsted themselves and now represents child minders, child day care providers, children care homes and children centres on compliance issues, restrictions and cancellations of registrations. He represents providers at Tribunals and in making representations to Ofsted.

John has also held Consultancy Posts within organisations advising on regulatory matters regarding Ofsted compliance.

Legal 500 2022 - Tier 1 Child Law (Public & Private - "A tenacious barrister who has extensive knowledge of domestic abuse cases."

Chambers & Partners 2022 -  Band 2 - Family (Children)  "John is tenacious, down to earth and a robust and inspiring advocate." "He is compassionate to his clients, committed and genuinely looks at cases in a sophisticated way, which helps add value. With John you always feel that time has not just been spent looking at the case, but also on how to bring to life clients' experiences." "He is a thorough, determined and persuasive advocate."

Chambers and Partners 2021 - Band 2 - "He is a standout for complicated cases." "He's very down to earth and says it like it is." "I am 150% confident that he is going to deliver exactly what is required."

Legal 500 2021 - Tier 1 'John is approachable, hard working, and skilful. His like-ability and stamina as well as his excellent client skills make him stand out.

Chambers and Partners 2020 - Band 3 - A former solicitor and children law expert with extensive knowledge of serious abuse allegation cases, among a range of other public and private children law issues. His work includes complex cases with international aspects. Strengths: "John has an excellent bedside manner with clients and displays high levels of sensitivity and empathy. He is able to explain legal terms to lay clients in easy to understand language and is very approachable." "Extremely experienced private children law advocate."

Legal 500 2020 - Tier 1 - He has an eye for the finer details and is fearless dealing with difficult issues both in the court and with clients. ’ 

Legal 500 2018/2019 - "Very personable and a staunch advocate."

Legal 500 2017- "Known for acting in cases of child abuse and adoption proceedings."

Legal 500 2016- "Recommended for both private and public law children cases."

Legal 500 2015 :‘He prepares thoroughly, and will go the extra mile for clients when necessary.’

Direct Access Client 2015 : ‘Parklane Plowden are very lucky to have a man like you on the team, you promised me you would do your best and you never broke that promise, I will never be able to thank you enough John’ Senior Partner of West Yorkshire Family Law Firm :’

Can I just say you are my absolute true hero!!’ Solicitor West Yorkshire ‘I spoke with (client ) the day after the hearing and he was on cloud nine.  Brilliant job and I will contact you in the future’

Law Society Children Panel 1996-2006;

Member of Association of Lawyers for Children;

Family Law Bar Association.

IN THE MATTER OF S-L (CHILDREN) Neutral Citation Number: [2017] EWCA Civ 2333

GD, BD & others v Wakefield Metropolitan District Council & others [2016] EWHC 3312 (Fam)

Rotherham Borough Metropolitan Council v L & Ors [2015] EWFC B29 (20 March 2015) R (A Child) [2012] EWCA Civ 1783

Re G and B (Fact-Finding Hearing) [2009] 1 FLR 1145 A County Council v W, H, B, & W [2009] EWHC 989 (Fam)

All in the Care Standards Tribunal EY Debbie Stewart -v- Ofsted [2005] 0533 Application to strike out appeal on procedural matters.

Adrienne Flemming -v- Ofsted [2004] 0401.EY Application to strike out appeal on procedural matters.

P -v- HM Chief Inspector of Schools in England [2004] 0334.EY-SUS Suspension case involving a day nursery (acting for parents). Mrs Christine Oakes -v- HM Chief Inspector of Schools in England [2003] 0226.EY

Case involved the cancellation of child minder who was in breach of the National Standards.

Lisa Stringer -v- HM Chief Inspector of Schools in England [2003] 0166.EY Cases involving breaches of the practitioner’s child minding ratio agreement.

Fun Camps -v- Ofsted [2003] 0124.EY Costs application.

John has considerable experience of conducted training seminars. This includes the provision of training for Local Authorities on law and procedure, court skills training for Paediatric Nursing Staff at local hospitals, Osfted Early Years Inspectors on legal issues and Court Skills, and Roman Catholic Priests on Data Protection Matters.

Leeds Metropolitan University Ba (Hons ) Law