Ruth Richards

  • Year of Call 2016


Specialising in a wide range of complex matters relating to children, including issues of fostering and adoption, non-accidental injury and death, sexual abuse; paedophile rings, incest, abuse and child neglect.

Ruth Richards specialises in all matters pertaining to children. She was called to the Bar in 2016, having initially qualified as a solicitor in 1998 and successfully completed her Higher Rights in 2011. After being in general family practice for four years, she worked as a specialist child and adult protection solicitor within local authorities for more than 10 years.

As a consequence of her local authority roles, she became legal advisor to an adoption panel and a fostering panel, legal advisor to a serious case review sub-committee, and legal advisor to a secure panel.

As a solicitor, Ruth was a member of the Children Panel and is well versed in representing children.


Ruth Richards is known to be a confident and robust advocate, and her tenacious approach has resulted in a number of notably successful outcomes. She has considerable experience in serious and complex children’s cases, and has been instructed on behalf of local authorities, parents and guardians.

She has worked on the most complex cases including issues of jurisdiction; Brussels II and Article 15; matters of designation; cases involving non-accidental injury; child death; Roma and travelling families and their nuances; cases involving pseudonyms; sexual abuse; paedophile rings and incest; the emotional abuse of children and cases of neglect appeals; and the revocation of placement order applications.

She has particular knowledge and expertise of the process and procedures of local authorities. Additionally, she has a wide range of experience in all types of private law proceedings and undertakes work in cases involving domestic abuse and Family Law Act injunctions, child arrangement orders, and Rule 16.4 appointments. She has handled a number of forced marriage protection orders.

Ruth has delivered training on secure accommodation and updates to the Children Law. She has also spoken at an event dealing with forced marriage and learning disability. She is legal advisor to F5 Foster Care, an independent fostering agency.

She is committed to the welfare of children and indeed has five of her own. She has personal knowledge of children with additional needs and always tries to keep children at the centre of all she does.

Notable Cases

Re Z – A local authority case where the safety and identity of a young person (a witness in a gang-related murder trial) needed protection. Care proceedings were brought in, in an effort to keep the young person safe. Applications were also made for secure accommodation orders to try and protect the young person. Pseudonyms and vulnerable witness procedures were key features of the case. The matter was dealt with before the High Court. The case is an example of the need to work closely with the police in such cases.

Re E-F – Acting for a mother within care and placement proceedings. Final care and placement orders were made at the conclusion. However, eleven months later, after difficult and protracted proceedings, orders were secured revoking the placement order and the discharge of the care order. The child was placed back with its mother and new-born sibling.


Family Law Bar Association
North Eastern Circuit
Legal advisor to F5 Foster Care