Susan J Williams
Partner and Head of Family Department
T +44 (0) 29 2010 0950
Department Family & matrimonial Languages English
Susan is a highly regarded family law specialist with over 24 years of experience. She is a member of the Law Society Children Panel, an advance member of the Law Society Family Panel and an accredited family lawyer with Resolution.
Susan’s expertise encompasses divorce and financial proceedings, including representing clients with complex business and financial issues with assets based in the UK and overseas. In addition, she provides advice and representation in respect to pre- and post-nuptial agreements and disputes between co-habiting couples, civil partnerships and same sex marriages.
Susan has extensive and specialist experience in Children Act Proceedings, both private proceedings and public (care) proceedings, acting for both parents and children through their guardians. She also provides expert advice on the complex issues that arise in alternative family structures, such as surrogacy, adoption, same sex parenting and parental declarations.
Professional Associations & Memberships
- Member of the Law Society Family (Advanced) Panel
- Member of the Law Society Children Panel
- Accredited Family Lawyer with Resolution
Legal 500, Chambers & Partners
My testimonials and accolades
Susan J Williams
“I could not have gone through this matter without the support of Susan Williams and her team. I will be forever grateful.”
Susan J Williams
“Susan is always there to help when there are any issues, and is highly attentive to her clients.”
The Legal 500
“Ince has helped a lot of our clients with family matters through the courts and in general legal advice. They are reliable and flexible with our clients and make them reassured that there can be a resolution to their problem.”
The Legal 500
“Susan Williams is really excellent. She is adept at fighting her clients corner whilst also being realistic as to the outcomes. Susan has the respect of the local judges and her opponents due to her experience and straightforward approach.”
“The service was 5* and I would recommend you to anyone after the way I was dealt with by you (Susan) and Victoria.”
“Thank you for all you and the team did during the case. Both Susan and Victoria were always there to explain things that I didn’t understand, and all matters were managed in a timely and very professional manner.”
Chambers and Partners
“Susan is outstanding, and her attention to detail is meticulous.”
Chambers and Partners
“She is a very smart operator who cuts right to the heart of things and quickly gets a real handle on a case.”
Chambers and Partners
“I felt very supported by Susan and very confident in her abilities - she has a very objective approach and was very clear and helpful during my case.”
The Legal 500 2022
“Susan Williams stands out in relation to client care and very good organisation of the case papers and case information in particular.”
My recent publications
News / What are the legal implications surrounding surrogacy?
In recent years, surrogacy has become more prominent, openly talked about and accepted as an opportunity for different family structures to be able to have a child of their own.
News / Adoption and surrogacy – What HR needs to know
Adoption and surrogacy rates in the UK are on the rise – in the year ending March 2020, there were 3,440 adoptions and 413 parental orders following a surrogacy arrangement. Employers and HR, usually equipped with the knowledge and experience to deal with issues around biological maternity and paternity leave and pay, are now increasingly required to know the statutory rights of adoptive parents, surrogate women and intended parents. This includes their respective entitlement to take leave from work, their pay arrangements, and providing wider support through this life-changing time in their lives.
News / Valentine's Day - your legal rights when taking the next step in your relationship
Each year, on 14 February millions of people across the world mark the day by sending cards and gifts to their partners to show their love and affection. With many considering this to be the most romantic day of the year, it may seem an appropriate time to embark on the next step of your relationship. This could mean couples deciding to move in together, or it sometimes provide an opportunity for a marriage proposal. These are very exciting times for couples, when careful consideration of the legal consequence of taking that next step are no doubt far from the happy couple’s minds.
News / How to achieve an amicable divorce
The beginning of the year always brings enquiries in relation to relationship breakdowns. The end of the old year is often a period of reflection and the New Year an opportunity for change.
News / How to achieve an amicable divorce – an outline
17-01-2022 / Private Wealth
At the beginning of the year, we always see a surge of relationship breakdown enquiries, as couples reflect at the end of an old year and the new year brings an opportunity for change.
Insights / Family Matters podcast series
Welcome to Family Matters, the podcast series which explores the different areas of family law.
News / Supporting employee mental health and wellbeing in the workplace during a relationship breakdown
One in four people will experience mental health issues in their lifetime. This can have a significant impact on a person’s life, including their wellbeing and performance in the workplace. In this article, Susan J Williams, Partner and Head of Family (Cardiff), explores the significant impact mental health can have on relationships, and its role as a cause and consequence of a relationship breakdown.
News / To vaccinate or not to vaccinate: What happens if parents cannot agree on the vaccination of their children against Covid-19?
In the last week, it has been widely reported that the USA has authorised the use of a Covid-19 vaccine to be administered to children over 12 years of age. Although the UK is currently assessing the data, it is anticipated that they will also approve the use of a Covid-19 vaccine for children. The question that then arises is what happens if parents cannot agree on whether their child should be given a Covid-19 vaccine.
Insights / The Domestic Abuse Act 2021 - could this be a turning point for violence against women?
On 29 April 2021, after years of parliamentary consideration, the Domestic Abuse Bill finally became law, representing a long-awaited change to our legislation.
News / Providing HR support for employees with relationship difficulties: a family law perspective
When a relationship comes to an end - whether a couple is going through divorce proceedings or ending a period of co-habitation - it is well recognised that this can have a huge impact on a member of staff’s work life.
News / Insight into family issues for expats living in Dubai
At the heart of the UAE, Dubai is a vibrant country, which offers amazing work opportunities for lots of British people looking to enhance their career, to work in a unique and exciting country, and to experience a different culture and meet with people from all over the world.
Insights / How to have a "good divorce" - top tips for couples and professionals
Recent data from The Office of National Statistics showed that during 2019, there was an increase in the number of divorces for both heterosexual and same-sex couples. In fact, it is the largest increase in divorce rates in the last five years.
News / Relationships in 'Lockdown: Part Two'
On the 29 October 2020, The Times ran an article titled “Can your relationship survive the second wave”. As Wales comes out of a “Firebreak” lockdown on 9 November 2020, and England starts a month-long lockdown from 5 November 2020 - this is a very timely question to ask.
Insights / Preventing a domestic violence pandemic
Since March, we have all had to adjust to the new reality in the face of Coronavirus. Now with the second national lockdown on the horizon in England, a ‘fire breaker’ lockdown underway in Wales and tiered restrictions being imposed in Scotland, we will all again retreat to our homes in order to protect ourselves, the vulnerable and our NHS.
Insights / Sending my child to school… The dilemma for parents co-parenting during Covid-19
As children attend school for the autumn term, for the first time since March 2020, schools across the UK are adopting measures to try and reduce the spread of coronavirus whilst allowing the return of all children to the school environment.
Insights / Covid-19 and the implications regarding Childcare Arrangements
In recent weeks family practitioners have had to deal with scenarios and situations which we hadn’t previously envisaged or had to consider. One parent stuck in lockdown on their own in one part of the country and the other with the children miles away, and grandparents and grandchildren not being able to see one another and share that special bond that exists. These are a few examples of the difficulties which separating families are having to endure.
News / Q&A: Why should you consider a co-habitation agreement?
According to a statistic from STEP, more than three million couples in the UK choose to co-habit, rather than marry or enter a civil partnership. However, unmarried couples who live together have far fewer legal rights than couples who are married or in civil partnerships. The concept of the ‘common law’ spouse is just a myth and not recognised in the law. As a result, co-habiting couples who are in the process of separating cannot access the financial orders as separating spouse.
News / Managing Child Arrangements Amid COVID-19
We are now having to face challenges nationally and globally which we never expected, and we are having to adapt very quickly to the significant impact of COVID-19 upon our daily lives. In this unprecedented time of uncertainty, it is normal to have worries about how to manage your household and your family arrangements, to abide by the government guidance whilst maintaining some degree of normality. As Cafcass (Court Welfare Advisory Service) have advised, in this climate of uncertainty it has never been more important to instill a sense of routine and normality for children in order to make them feel safe and secure.
News / Ince celebrates International Women’s Day
On 8 March, International Women’s Day celebrates its 109th year, since it was first established in 1911. International Women’s Day encourages women around the world to come together to celebrate social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women, with a call for action to push for gender equality.
News / Domestic Abuse
It has been reported in the media that Camilla, The Duchess of Cornwall, hosted an event on Wednesday to highlight the invaluable work that the organization 'SafeLives' undertakes to support victims of Domestic Abuse.