Legal Advice on all Child Maintenance Service Matters
Established in 1996 by Mike Smith LLB, Durham Legal Services has always specialised in all areas of child maintenance casework, including tribunals and advice to clients all over the UK. However, we now use this experience to focus particularly on shared care and day to day care issues.
In 1990 Mike left the British Army due to family separation and in July of that year he found himself becoming a single parent of four children. Because of his experiences as a single parent, Mike went on to study Law at Durham University in 1993 completing his LLB in 1996. As part of his time at Durham, Mike worked within the charity sector helping people to deal with the newly formed Child Support Agency. In 1996 Durham Legal Services opened its first office in Seaham, Co Durham. With the introduction of the World Wide Web, DLS began to expand country wide. Due to this expansion the company moved to its present office in Consett, Co Durham.
Through Durham Legal Services, Mike has always looked for ways to help families going through the trauma of breakup and 2004 saw the introduction of Evidence-Tracker. The system is a secure online programme designed to allow estranged couples to avoid acrimonious outbursts which can emotionally scar their children. The password-controlled system allows couples to log all contact arrangements in a virtual diary and they comment on any problems which arise. Because nothing can be removed, it provides a warts-and-all record of contacts and confrontations. Evidence-Tracker prompts couples to analyse behaviour and think more carefully about what they say and do. We believe Evidence-Tracker resulted in the new social policy that saw the introduction of the 2012 Child Maintenance Scheme and the encouragement of separated families to enter Family-Based Agreements.
Following the success of Evidence-Tracker and the introduction of the Child Maintenance Service, Mike and his team introduced Private Agreement a second online system which help and encouraged parents to reach a private agreement. The system helps parents to calculate the correct maintenance payment without using the Statutory CMS and identified the savings from having no collection fees. The same system is currently used by the Child Maintenance Service with its own calculator. Private Agreement was one of the first companies awarded the Government Kite Mark for its work in Supporting Separated Families.
Durham Legal Services continues to grow with its help and support for separated familes. As a long-standing professional organisation dedicated only to child support work, our staff are here to support our clients with their Child Maintenance problems using our expertise in this area of law which is based on good, sound, legal practice. As you can see from our small bio Mike and the team at Durham Legal Services are here to help.
Contact us today. Telephone 01207 693966