Who We Are

Collaborative Law Wales is an organisation of specialist family lawyers who share a commitment to resolving the issues following relationship breakdown in a constructive and amicable way.  We are all members of Resolution and all trained Collaborative lawyers.  Some of us are also trained mediators, arbitrators or accredited as specialist by The Law Society and/or Resolution.

Choosing a lawyer that is right for you is one of, if not the most important decision you can make.  Take time to explore our members’ profiles and individual firm websites.  Please do also feel free to call us for an informal chat to see whether the Collaborative process is right for you.

Some of the CLW members

Rhys Taylor

Rhys Taylor is a public access barrister, collaborative lawyer and qualified family arbitrator (MCIArb). He has 16 year’s experience at the bar and extensive experience in family finance matters for married and unmarried clients. As a public access barrister he is able to accept instructions direct from a member of the public without going through a solicitor, in appropriate cases. Please feel free to contact Rhys to discuss this option. As a barrister Rhys is also able to act as a “fifth person” in the collaborative process, in giving advice to each side on how to progress their collaborative negotiation, should an impasse be reached. Rhys has been mentioned in the standard legal directories, including Chambers UK 2012, where he is described as, “Really pleasant, thorough and efficient, particularly noted for his expertise in ancillary relief proceedings and TOLATA applications.” Rhys co-edits the website www.familyarbitrator.com and sits part time as a legal chairman of the Residential Property Tribunal (Wales). 

Melanie Edwards

Melanie Edwards is a family lawyer with over 25 years experience in all aspects of family law and is a Partner in the firm of  JCP Solicitors. She is accredited by Resolution as a specialist family lawyer, with particular expertise in children law and in advanced financial matters arising from family breakdown. She is frequently involved in cases involving substantial assets. Melanie is based in West Wales but receives instructions from a wide geographical area. She has a constructive, pragmatic and conciliatory approach and an interest in alternatives to the Court process in trying to resolve family disputes. Melanie is a trained and practising collaborative lawyer committed to working with clients in the collaborative process in a way that achieves the best possible outcomes for families going through family breakdown, divorce or separation. Melanie is a fluent Welsh speaker.

Valerie Henley

I am a Solicitor, Partner and Head of the Family Department at Rubin Lewis O’Brien. I run a busy department and overseeing 3 Solicitors and various support staff. I deal with all areas of family law including divorce, separation, children and finances and represent clients at court. Matters are often complex involving complicated financial issues which I must readily understand. I am able to interpret complex personal finances. I am a specialist member of ‘Resolution’. I trained as a collaborative lawyer with Resolution in 2011. I also trained as a Mediator and have been a Trustee of a local Women’s Group. I also give talks to professionals from various agencies on Domestic Abuse and the legal framework. I have a keen interest in collaborative law. I see it as a further option open to couples attempting to deal with Children and financial issues following family breakdown. It allows them to stay in control of their own futures. I wholeheartedly see its benefits and support its ethos of helping couples to work together with their lawyers to reach agreement without recourse to costly, stressful Court battles. I am committed to minimising the financial and emotional pain of family breakdown. I studied my Law Degree at Leeds University and then went to Chester Law College. I finished my training at a Cardiff City Centre Law Form. I have been with my current firm since 1993 where I have been a Partner since 1994.

Max Davies

Max Davies is a family law barrister who practices from 30 Park Place Chambers in Cardiff. He is a collaboratively trained lawyer and is able to act either as a jointly instructed expert or by way of sole instruction where both clients would benefit from the use of Counsel. Called to the Bar in 2005, having had a brief previous career spent mostly at the Daily Telegraph, Max quickly specialised in Family Law and in particular in Matrimonial Finance and property disputes between cohabitees. He has lectured at for Resolution, the Confederation of South Wales Law Societies, the Solicitors Group and at in-house chambers events on numerous subjects within this field. He is a keen advocate of the Collaborative Law alternative to the court process and is committed to resolving marital breakdown with a future focussed approach.

Christine Ann Dyer

Christine has thirty four years’ experience in Family Law and qualified as a Mediator with the Solicitors Family Law Association (Resolution) in 1996.  Her keen interest in working with separating couples and individuals to find solutions together led her to train as a Collaborative Lawyer in 2006.  Aware of the emotional and financial consequences for the family going through a family breakdown she recognises the importance of finding the right process for clients.  Christine is an accredited specialist of Resolution and a practitioner member of the Law Society Mediation Panel.