SEN solicitor recommendations?

(22 Posts)
firecracker123 Wed 27-Apr-16 09:43:59


I need a good SEN solicitor. Basically my DC Has a statement for ASD/ADHD. Not coping in mainstream.LEA agree he needs specialist but they have no ASD provision of their own apart from one school which is for low functioning . They are not trying to put him in that school but they have mentioned an EBD unit which is completely unsuitable as he is not EBD at all and it could not meet some of his other needs. We want an Asd residential school which is in their Local Offer but they will probably fight on cost grounds. So I am preparing for battle!

I need recommendations for a good SEN solicitor. I am thinking Douglas Silas possibly but would appreciate other recommendations too

OP’s posts: |
lamya190 Wed 27-Apr-16 13:08:07

Hi there, my friend tried Douglas Silas she said he was fantastic but does charge quite a lot!! Sorry don't know of any one else, good luck

elsaiscold Wed 27-Apr-16 14:30:25

Firecracker, Fiona Slomovich (think that is the correct spelling) is a SN advocate. I have spoken to her in the past and she is very knowledgeable. If you search her name on MN, you will see threads where she is mentioned. Sorry, can't remember the name of our organisation, something like Advocacy Associates.

elsaiscold Wed 27-Apr-16 14:31:39

opps, sorry, her organisation not our, promise I'm not her!!

firecracker123 Wed 27-Apr-16 14:52:21

Thanks I will look into both suggestions

Does anyone know what happens if they name the placement I do not want whilst I am appealing ie where does he go to school while I wait for the tribunal to go through?

OP’s posts: |
DimpleHands Wed 27-Apr-16 20:40:20


No suggestions (although I have also heard Fiona is excellent) other than perhaps joining the Yahoo ABA group. There are some very knowledgeable people on there with regard to these things.

AugustaFinkNottle Thu 28-Apr-16 08:28:13

I think the name is Slomovic. You could also try Maxwell Gillott or Watkins in Bristol.

If they name a placement you don't want, I'm afraid your child either has to go there or you have to make your own arrangements.

firecracker123 Thu 28-Apr-16 08:46:35

Can they not stay where they are while the tribunal is ongoing? I do not want him out of school . Would it not undermine my case if he goes to the place I do not want him to as will they then try and argue it is working at tribunal ?

OP’s posts: |
firecracker123 Thu 28-Apr-16 08:47:05

Sorry when I say they I mean can he not stay where he is until it's sorted

OP’s posts: |
AugustaFinkNottle Thu 28-Apr-16 10:18:40

He could only stay where he is if the LA agrees. If they don't, the current school will have no funding to support him. However, you could try asking on the basis that it would be really disruptive for your son to have to move to one school only to have to move again if/when you win the appeal.

firecracker123 Thu 28-Apr-16 10:34:15

His current school are supportive and I am not going to damage his mental health by moving him to the wrong placement

OP’s posts: |
firecracker123 Thu 28-Apr-16 10:35:12

The thing is the school they may suggest would only last for a year anyway as it goes to year 6 and there is no secondary provision - I have looked already

OP’s posts: |
KOKOagainandagain Thu 28-Apr-16 12:23:34

There are only certain times when you can appeal to SENDIST. As you refer to a statement rather than an EHCP I suspect that it has not been issued or amended and reissued in the last two months? When is AR or transfer due? You may need to call an interim annual review if one is not due. You cannot just appeal placement (used to be part 4) but have to appeal (what used to be) parts 2 and 3 as well.

lottielou7 Sat 30-Apr-16 12:16:57

I've recently hired Chris Barnett from Match Solicitors and I've found him to be excellent, thorough, straight talking and efficient. I tried Fiona Slomovic first but received no reply from her - she must be very busy.

AugustaFinkNottle Sat 30-Apr-16 15:56:53

If the school is prepared to keep him that's probably fine; the problem may be if the LA says he shouldn't be there and pulls the funding.

You do have a right to insist on a mainstream school being named and they have to comply with that unless it would be incompatible with the efficient education of others in the school and there are no adjustments the school could take to counteract that. Your problem is that that wouldn't be consistent with appealing for a special school.

Pebbles72 Sun 01-May-16 15:28:34

I used Dougmas Silas and he was fantastic but costly. Worth every penny though as my son comes to the end of his second year in residential specialist HFASD provision and is thriving after years of hell.

jigster01 Sun 01-May-16 16:06:14

We used douglas silas for oc resi school and then fiona to carry on to the sixth form of same ..succeeded both times. ..Douglas was very expensive ....fiona was pennies in comparison. ..she is very hard to get hold of and you have to be much more in the driving seat with fiona rather than a passe get if that makes sense ...
With regards your other question ..I thought the placement stands in the existing SEN while the appeal goes on as we had a parent at sixth form who's appeal carried on to the sept term and they were still with us .

jigster01 Sun 01-May-16 16:09:34

Rather than a passenger that should say !

sarrah30 Sun 14-Aug-16 14:01:40

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

hangrymum Wed 20-Jun-18 14:26:55

Has anyone on here used SEN Legal? Any thoughts on them? I’m in a very similar position to OP. Incidentally, I hope yours went well firecracker123. It’d be interesting to see how you got on?

OutofSyncGirl Wed 20-Jun-18 23:36:58

I will pm you re: SEN legal. I would highly recommend Chris Barnett - he got our LA to settle.

cansu Sun 24-Jun-18 20:18:53

I haven't used them personally but they have a good reputation in Suffolk. An ed psych told me they are very persistant and win cases. They are however very pricey. I was in a very similar position to the OP. I recommend Fiona Slomovic. We used her and found her excellent and better value for money than SEN Legal.

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