Solicitor at The Robert Kerr Partnership
Director at John Gardner & Company
John Gardner, qualified as a Solicitor in 2004. Since qualifying he has worked within the Robert Kerr Partnership and as a sole practitioner, always in the Paisley area. Today he specializes in all areas of Child Law, and has represented clients at over one thousand Children’s Hearing’s across the country. He also conducts Court proceeding for Adoption and Permanence Orders and child contact cases calling before the Sheriff Court.
John is a critic of many social work practices and prides himself in opposing the intervention of the Social Work Department into the life of many families. He strongly opposes the accepted wisdom that Social Work staff must be right and has fought to counter the cosy relationship that many Solicitors enjoy with the Social Services.
John believes that too many Solicitors have forgotten the interests of their client and instead focussed on the professional and educational ties to Social Workers, Children’s Reporters and other Solicitors. John always puts the interest of his client at the forefront of his thinking and will never try and persuade a client to do something which is not in their interests.
For many years John operated exclusively in the area of criminal law, however seeing the way that many clients felt powerless against state intervention in their life and the way that most Social Work Departments operate led him to turn his attentions to trying to offset the balance in favour of the client. Never reluctant to challenge Panel members, John is often to be found conducting appeals against Panel decisions and has a proven track record of having Panel decisions overturned in the Sheriff Court.
John operates his own practice specializing in Child Law, he operates this under the umbrella of the Robert Kerr Partnership. If you have a Children’s Panel then John can attend this with you, he is also prepared should you attend a Hearing on your own to speak to you and discuss whether there are grounds of appeal against the decision of the Hearing. John will also discuss applications to be a relevant person and is happy to discuss kinship and grandparent rights with anyone. Because John bases himself in his office seven days a week he is happy to speak to clients at any time and will return all calls and messages as soon as possible.
John is also regularly instructed in Child Protection proceedings before the Sheriff Court and Children’s Hearings and always tries to ensure that clients are properly represented at all stages of these difficult proceedings. John feels that for too long legal proceedings involving children have tended to try to avoid involving Solicitors, this has allowed the Social Work Departments across the country to ride a “horse and cart” through the interests of children. John has a strong belief that children should, wherever possible be with family, as opposed to Social Services which use foster parents as a default in nearly all cases.
On the rare occasions that John can be found away from work he can be found on the golf course or the gym.