Heather Souter | Partner | Family Team | Southampton Skip to content

My experience

I am a partner in the Family team specialising in:

  • divorce and dissolution of civil partnership;
  • financial consequences following a relationship breakdown;
  • cohabitation and living together agreements; and
  • private children matters, including financial provision for children under Schedule 1.

I advise on all aspects of family law to include divorce, financial settlements arising after a separation (including the interim financial position), enforcement and variation claims, and complex private children matters, which often raise serious issues such as parental alienation, substance misuse and controlling and coercive behaviour.

I also have a specific interest in farming and agricultural cases and expertise as to how these are treated upon a divorce or dissolution. My agricultural sector knowledge has been noted by the leading independent directory, The Legal 500, which also names me as a key lawyer. I am also a member of the Agricultural Law Association.

My clients are wide ranging and include sports personalities, business owners, members of the medical profession, accountants, farmers and landowners, and homemakers.

In addition, I am a member of Resolution, a national organisation committed to resolving family matters through constructive and non-confrontational means, and have assisted clients involved in mediation and arbitration. I am a trained collaborative lawyer, familiar with and open to all dispute resolution options, enabling me to help clients choose the most appropriate options to move matters forward.

My commitment to Resolution has seen me elected to both the Hampshire Resolution committee as well as being elected Chairperson of Hampshire Young Resolution committee (YRes) ensuring that I am at the forefront of developments in family law.

Examples of my experience include:

  • advising in respect of financial settlements involving complex trust and company structures, significant pension provision (including Armed Forces pension provision), personal injury awards and foreign property;
  • assisting to advise and draft multi-million pound pre-nuptial agreements;
  • acting for parents to resolve living and educational arrangements for their children to include obtaining a court order that her client’s son live with him having previously lived with his mother;
  • acting for fathers in contested court proceedings to obtain permission to move to different countries with their children; and
  • resolving cohabitation disputes and drafting deeds of separation following the same.

Insights from Heather Souter

Articles

Divorce - there is another way. Introducing collaborative law

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What is collaborative law and how is it different to family mediation?

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How I’ve helped our clients

A referee says "Heather Souter is extremely knowledgeable and performs consistently at the highest level."

Legal 500 2022 Edition

Working with Heather was a very easy process and made a difficult life situation much more manageable over the many months that it extended. Heather listened carefully and made useful observations and very clear suggestions on the way to proceed.

Mr G, Hampshire (divorce & finances)

Great team & would recommend to family & friends!!

Rosalind Hanson - Matrimonial Advice

I found the solicitor helping me with my particular issues to be empathetic and she helped me understand my rights in many areas that I was unsure of.

Client - Divorce

Thank you so much for all your help with this - I know it was possibly a bit of an unusual case and very drawn out but your help and advice was absolutely invaluable at a difficult time.

Mrs G, London - financial settlement following divorce

I cannot recommend Heather enough. Her friendliness, understanding and efficiency helped me to feel at ease throughout a very difficult time. I am so relieved I put my trust in her. She has been very informative and professional every step of the way. Without a doubt, worth every penny. I thank her and her team and would urge anybody who needs a solicitor in family law, especially in more complex cases to entrust Paris Smith.

I was recommended to Paris Smith LLP and Neil Davies in particular, to advise me and act on my behalf during my divorce. Neil, and his associate Heather Souter, provided first class advice and guidance throughout, at all times seeking the most expeditious and cost effective path through the difficult process. They were both empathetic to me and my situation, but firm in what was reasonable in terms of demands, outcomes and the future. They took a holistic view of my family circumstances and were able to manage expectations on both sides. Their arguments and guidance have resulted in a fair and reasonable outcome, which for me has been transformational and the interests of my immediate family have been safeguarded. I cannot recommend them highly enough and would certainly want them on the journey with me, if anything like this were to occur in the future.

Tom Joyce - Finances

Thank you very much for your good work. Also a particular thanks to Heather - I found her approach, manner and professionalism most re-assuring for a client in a high pressure and emotionally taxing scenario, and I suspect she will go far...

Mr M - Private Children Matter (International Relocation)

The service I received from Heather Souter and the team has been brilliant. They got me through the toughest of times and the result I needed. I couldn’t highly recommend them enough.

Ms J, New Forest - Divorce and Children Matters

I really do wish to thank you for all your help - as none of this would have been possible without you. Your professional and practical approach is very much appreciated, and it has made an already difficult process a lot easier knowing where I stand, which has been entirely down to your good diligence and sound advice. Thank you once again, Heather, for all your help.

Mr A

I meant to say thank you to Heather for researching and properly considering the properties that we put forward to my wife … they were absolutely right and demonstrated deep understanding, interest and compassion for both sides; I am most impressed and it was then highlighted by the properties offered by the wife’s legal team. Thank you.

Mr J - Financial Remedy Proceedings

The staff are very professional and I felt I was in good hands. There is a good supportive atmosphere within the company and I was confident my best interests were paramount in my interactions with staff.

Mrs K, Hampshire - Finances

I would like to thank you so very, very much for all your help and support at the most difficult time of my life. I will never forget how helpful and supportive you have been from that very first meeting two and half years ago (which seems like a lifetime ago now) to now. I will most certainly recommend your services to others.

Mrs E, Hampshire - Divorce, Finances and Children

Not the first time I have used Paris Smith and I can positively say very very good all round service so far.

Adrian Neil