Chatteris: 01354 692607 | Dereham: 01362 692182 | Ely: 01353 662203 | Heacham: 01485 571366

King's Lynn: 01553 660033 | Swaffham: 01760 721992 | Watton: 01953 880800

Private Individuals > Family Law

Family Law

People often think of a Family legal team as 'divorce lawyers'. While much of what we do does involve traditional divorce work, we can also help with the following:

Family Law

Pre-nuptial agreements

Engaged couples can enter into agreements setting out their financial plans in the event of the marriage breaking down. Although these are not legally enforceable at present they can be helpful later on.

Children issues of all types

Including parental contact with children following the breakdown of the parents' relationship.

Cohabitee issues

At the outset of a relationship as a preventive measure or when things go wrong and there is no Cohabitation Contract to provide guidance.

Civil partnerships

We can advise on the equivalent of a 'pre-nuptial agreement' or 'cohabitation agreement' for those embarking on a civil partnership, or help with dissolving the partnership and the division of assets when things go wrong.

Domestic violence

Sometimes people need protection from a partner or family member. The court can make orders for the protection of individuals (often called injunctions).

Ward Gethin Archer's Family Law lawyers offer a comprehensive service including:

If you require advice, then please contact one of our solicitors below or contact your nearest office who will be more than happy to assist. The contact details for each of our offices can be found by clicking here.

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Richard Pennington

Richard Pennington

Richard is a solicitor and Director in our Family, Civil Litigation and Employment departments based in King's Lynn.

Richard became a solicitor in 1986, and has been a Director since May 1991. Richard brings over 20 years of litigation experience and deals with particularly contentious financial issues in divorces for SME owners and their spouses, commercial disputes of all sorts, contentious probate matters and professional negligence disputes for the firm.

Richard is a trained civil litigation mediator, a Member of the Professional Negligence Lawyers Association and a Resolution Trained Collaborative Family Lawyer able to deal with collaborative work, and is also a member of the Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists.

Richard is also the Chair of YMCA Norfolk and a trustee of a number of local charities, a church elder and a member of the Lawyers Christian Fellowship.


As published in The UK Legal 500 2014 East Anglia Private client Family recommended Law firms:

"Richard Pennington at Ward Gethin Archer is 'an old-fashioned litigator with a superb legal brain and great tactical awareness'; he regularly advises on contentious divorce settlements."

Email Richard Pennington 

Telephone Richard Pennington 01553 667202

Accreditations & Professional Memberships:

Members of ResolutionMembers of The Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists (ACTAPS)Professional Negligence Lawyers AssociationResolution Collaborative Lawyer
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Sara Plummer

Sara Plummer

Sara is a solicitor in the Family Law team and works in our Dereham office covering Dereham, Swaffham and Watton. Sara qualified in 2006, joined the firm in October 2008 and has over ten years' experience in Family Law.

Sara advises clients on all aspects of Family Law including divorce, civil partnership dissolution, in particular upon financial issues that follow a relationship breakdown. Sara also specialises in issues regarding children such as child contact arrangements and residence disputes. Sara also deals with advice and preparation of Cohabitation Agreements, Separation Agreements, Pre-Nuptial Agreements and Change of Name Deeds.

Sara is a Resolution Accredited Specialist with particular specialisms in Child Law, private proceedings and financial provision. She is also a member of Resolution, which is an organisation of Family Law that is committed to resolving family disputes in a constructive and conciliatory way. She has also been a trustee of charities that help victims of domestic violence.

Sara is also on the staff liaison committee with the firm. She enjoys keeping fit/relaxing by supporting her local villages with zumba and yoga clubs.

Email Sara Plummer 

Telephone Sara Plummer 01362 852905

Accreditations & Professional Memberships:

Members of ResolutionResolution Specialist
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Karen Carpenter

Karen Carpenter

Karen is a Chartered Legal Executive who heads up the Family Team based at the Ely office, where for over 30 years she has given help and support to all her clients who find themselves in situations of conflict and high emotion.

A member of the Law Society Family Panel and Resolution, Karen has undertaken mediation training and qualified as a Collaborative Lawyer in 2005 (for more information go to www.ccflg.co.uk).

Karen deals with and has experience of all aspects of Family Law including divorce, dissolution of civil partnerships, pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements and all related financial issues, child welfare including residence orders and assisting grand parents and other family members to obtain Special Guardianship orders together with Step-parent Parental Responsibility Agreements.

Karen is a director of and sits on the management committee of the Ely and Cambridge Contact Centre.

Karen plays an active role in her home village. She enjoys amateur dramatics, reading and walking.

Email Karen Carpenter 

Telephone Karen Carpenter 01353 646105

Accreditations & Professional Memberships:

The Law Society Accredited: Family LawMembers of ResolutionResolution Collaborative Lawyer
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Joanna Turner

Joanna Turner

Joanna is a Trainee Legal Executive within the family department in our Ely office, and advises on all aspects of marriage and relationship breakdowns. In addition Joanna specialises in debt recovery. Joanna has completed her examinations with the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives and has been with Ward Gethin Archer since 2004.

Friendly and approachable, Joanna is dedicated to supporting her clients through challenging times, and prides herself on her accuracy and attention to detail.

Outside of work Joanna enjoys running with her dog, whether it be at local parkrun events or with team members at her local canicross club, travelling and spending time with her family and friends.

Email Joanna Turner 

Telephone Joanna Turner 01353 646116

Accreditations & Professional Memberships:

The Law Society Accredited: Family Law
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Sarah Fairbrother

Sarah Fairbrother

Having completed her training with Ward Gethin Archer, Sarah was admitted to the roll as a Solicitor on 15th September 2011 and is now one of the firm's Directors.

Sarah advises clients on all aspects of Family Law including divorce, civil partnership dissolution, in particular upon financial issues that follow a relationship breakdown. Sarah also specialises in issues regarding children such as child contact arrangements and residence disputes. Sarah also deals with advice and preparation of Cohabitation Agreements, Separation Agreements, Pre-Nuptial and Post-Nuptial Agreements and Change of Name Deeds.

Sarah is also a Trustee of counselling charity Relate and enjoys playing netball in her spare time.

Sarah is also a member of Resolution.

Email Sarah Fairbrother 

Telephone Sarah Fairbrother 01553 667250

Accreditations & Professional Memberships:

Members of Resolution
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Amy Matthews

Amy Matthews

Amy joined Ward Gethin Archer in May 2016 as a Trainee Solicitor and is currently in the Litigation team in our King's Lynn office.

Amy graduated with a Law degree in 2013 and completed her Legal Practice Course at BPP University Cambridge in April 2016.

Before relocating to King's Lynn, Amy worked as a Paralegal in Norwich for two years within the Civil Intervention & Asset Recovery and Insolvency Departments.

Amy previously volunteered with the Citizens Advice Bureau and is currently a member of the Law Society Junior Lawyers Division.

Email Amy Matthews 

Telephone Amy Matthews 01553 667211

Accreditations & Professional Memberships:

The Law Society Accredited: Personal Injury
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Sally Dean

Sally Dean

Sally qualified as a solicitor in 2008 and is based in the family team in King's Lynn. Sally specialises in helping clients through all of the legal issues around family and relationships.

Sally advises on all aspects of Family Law including divorce, civil partnership dissolution, and the financial issues that follow a relationship breakdown. Sally also specialises in issues regarding children such as child contact arrangements and residence disputes. Sally also deals with advice and preparation of Cohabitation Agreements, Separation Agreements, Pre-Nuptial and Post-Nuptial Agreements and Change of Name Deeds.

When Sally is not in the office she enjoys spending time with her young family, making music, cycling and running.

Email Sally Dean 

Telephone Sally Dean 01553 667250

Accreditations & Professional Memberships:

The Law Society Accredited: Family Law