Juanita Kareer shortlisted in LALY awards
Date posted: 22 May 2020
We are delighted to announce that Juanita Kareer, solicitor in our Family Law Team, has been shortlisted as a finalist for the Family Law Lawyer of the Year in this year’s Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards (The LALYs).
Juanita started at Wilson Solicitors LLP as a caseworker in 2010 and following a successful training contract, she qualified as a solicitor in 2013. She has remained part of the Family Law team at Wilsons ever since. Juanita is a wonderful colleague and an asset to the firm. She is an amazing team player at the firm and is always willing to discuss matters with other members of the team and provide advice to junior members of staff. She has an impressive knowledge of private and public law children proceedings and this is clearly shown by her admittance to the Law Society’s Children Panel.
Juanita’s commitment to her clients is unwavering and she will do as much as possible to achieve the best possible outcome for her clients. Juanita is keen to ensure that clients, particularly those that are vulnerable, have access to a solicitor and access to justice. Juanita has had many successful outcomes in representing clients who require Non Molestation Orders and Occupation Orders, thus obtaining protective measures for the most vulnerable clients. In care proceedings, Juanita represents clients with mental health issues, learning difficulties and substance misuse issues. She is compassionate and patient with clients and has a down to earth and understanding approach with them.
In the last two years, Juanita has been involved in two cases which have gone to the Court of Appeal. In the case of Re A (A Child)  EWCA Civ 2240, Juanita represented the child in this case where the court was faced with the dilemma of choosing between two equally appropriate and positive placements. The Court of Appeal ruled on the Judge’s reasoning and found that it was inadequate and as such, the matter was remitted.
In the case of Re H (Abduction: Retention in Non-Contracting state)  EWCA Civ 672, Juanita represented the appellant. The Court of Appeal was concerned with the issue of wrongful retention and removal. This particular case appeared to redefine the parameters of wrongful retention stating that it could happen in a non-contracting state with the child later being taken to a contracting state.
These two appeal cases demonstrate Juanita’s ability and capacity to deal with complex proceedings which are also legally aided and she worked with highly esteemed barristers in the field.
Juanita is empathetic and supportive with her clients but firm when she needs to be. Juanita receives positive feedback from clients who appreciate the time and effort that Juanita puts into representing them. They comment upon her availability and prompt responses which puts them at ease, particularly when they are most anxious. She has even inspired a client, who has provided a testimonial for her nomination, to study family law.
Juanita also conducts her own advocacy in most of her cases and has a flair for putting her client’s case in the best possible light. Clients like to have the consistency of representation that Juanita can provide to them through conducting her own advocacy.
Juanita is also happy to carry out pro bono work and regularly attends the Central Family Court to offer advice to clients on a monthly basis at the Citizens Advice Bureau as an Honorary Legal Adviser.
Chris Minnoch, CEO of LAPG, which organises the LALY awards on a not-for-profit basis to celebrate the work of social justice lawyers, says:
‘The finalists selected by the LALY judges this year truly reflect the broad range of lawyers and organisations who all have a vital role to play in ensuring people in our communities have access to high-calibre legal advice. We are recognising the lawyers who are working to protect the rights of prisoners charged with the most serious offences; of children at risk of FGM; of families living in unsafe, unsuitable homes; and much more.
Winners are announced at the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards ceremony on 7 July 2020 which will be held virtually online.