Jane Crowley QC

Call 1976 Silk 1998

Jane Crowley QC

Practice Overview

Jane’s reputation as a highly effective advocate and shrewd tactician extends beyond Wales and throughout England. Prior to her recent return to 30 Park Place following several years in London she has been ranked as a leading London silk in addition to her ranking for Wales. Jane’s wealth of experience of the most complex aspects of children cases ensures an extensive fund of knowledge and a calm and confident approach. Jane is recognised for her particular expertise in cases concerning complex medical evidence, such as;

  • Non Accidental death/catastrophic injury to a child;
  • Non Accidental Head Injury (NAHI), formerly known as “Shaken Baby Syndrome”;
  • Genetic disorders, vitamin deficiencies and congenital malformations which can raise concerns of child abuse cases due to suspicious “injuries” which give the appearance of having been inflicted;
  • Allegations of “honour based killing” and forced marriage;
  • Suspected radicalisation cases
  • Sexual abuse: inter and intra familial sexual abuse
  • Child protection cases involving concurrent criminal prosecution for murder/ attempted murder/ child cruelty and neglect;
  • Fabricated Induced Illness (FII) allegations;
  • Significant harm arising from parenting difficulties experienced by parents with learning/mental health or other forms of disability;
  • Cases involving the representation/cross examination of a child or vulnerable adult and working to the Recommendations of the Report of the Vulnerable Witness and Children Working Group, the Advocates’ Gateway and the use of Court Appointed Intermediaries.

In Private Law

Jane has a particular interest in cases concerning the relocation of children, whether internationally or within the jurisdiction and chaired the 2015 Hanson Renouf/ALC conference in Jersey on the International Relocation of Children, also presenting her own paper on behalf of the Association of Lawyers for Children on the “Child’s Perspective on Relocation”.

She accepts instructions in cases of International Child Abduction and also acts for parents in other complex private law disputes concerning their children. 

Jane is an excellent communicator who combines the provision of realistic advice with total commitment to her client’s case as an advocate. She has a commanding and engaging court presence, laced with charm and a lightness of touch, which inspires confidence. Her sound judgment and eye for detail contribute to her tactical awareness. Solicitors appreciate her skills, diligence and her commitment to respond swiftly to communications. Jane quickly builds a strong team relationship with her instructing solicitors and juniors.

Notable and Reported cases

  • Re: Y (No 3) [2016] EWHC 503 (Fam)

    Fact Finding judgment in case concerning a family group detained in Turkey suspected of trying to take their children into war torn Syria. Issues re possibly radicalisation. Munby LJ.

  • X (Children) and Y (Children) [2015] EWHC 2265 (Fam).

    Suspected radicalisation case with risk of flight from jurisdiction. First case of the use of electronic GPS tagging used in Family jurisdiction. Munby LJ

  • Re L (Application to Withdraw) (Head Injuries: Unknown Cause) [2015] EWFC 67.

    Jane represented a father suspected of inflicting a head injury on his baby, by probing the medical evidence to highlight unusual features in the clinical findings and deficiencies in the clinical management of the baby’s care, resulting in the withdrawal of the Local Authority’s case at the conclusion of the medical evidence. Her detailed analysis of the medical records resulted in the application being withdrawn at the close of the Local Authority’s case.

  • In re: B (A Child) (Care Proceedings: Habitual Residence) [2013] EWCA Civ 1434 [2013] WLR(D) 461.

    Jane represented the child in a case where the Court of Appeal overturned the first instance determination of habitual residence in the High Court.

  • Re E (Withdrawal of Care Proceedings) 2013 EWHC 2400.

    Necessity for a robust analysis of the evidential basis of an application and guidelines for Emergency Removals and s 20 agreements. Jane successfully dismantled the Local Authority’s case against her client who was alleged to have tampered with essential medical equipment required for her daughter’s survival. Local Authority withdrew their case at the conclusion of their own evidence.

    Mrs Justice Theis DBE stated at paragraph 7 of her judgment:

    ‘All of the advocates have conducted this hearing to the highest standard; in particular Mrs Crowley Q. C., on behalf of the mother, for her detailed, well targeted and extremely effective cross examination which turned the case round from what it first appeared to be on paper.  This case has illustrated the vital importance of advocates who are experienced in undertaking this work and the value of the forensic process. Without that expertise and this process the outcome in this case could have been very different, which would have been detrimental to E's welfare.’

  • In the matter of A (A Child) [2012] UKSC 60.

    Jane appeared in the Supreme Court where she successfully represented a father whose contact to his own child had been stopped because of an allegation of historic sexual abuse made against him by a very vulnerable individual who did not wish her identity to be disclosed to him and sought protection under the Human Rights Act. The issue for the court was how to balance the various conflicting Human Rights issues arising. 

  • Family Dispute Resolution

    Although not a formally qualified mediator Jane has been requested by solicitors to undertake mediation sessions in children disputes.

    Her considerable experience as a Deputy High Court Judge and a Recorder equips her particularly well for Early Dispute Evaluation work. 

  • Regulatory, Inquiries & Inquests

    Jane represented Rhondda Cynon Taf in the Clwych Enquiry convened by the Children’s Commissioner for Wales and subsequently undertook advisory work for the Commissioner

  • Recommendations
    • Continues to be a leading individual for cases involving serious physical abuse to children, particularly those that require a strong grasp of complex medical evidence. Her private law practice also includes a particular interest in forced marriage and child relocation matters. Strengths: "Well respected for Children Act matters." (Chambers UK 2017)

    • She is very personable and remains calm under pressure.’ (Legal 500 2016)

    • "She has a shrewd eye for seeing the best way to run a case….She helps clients through extremely difficult situations." (Chambers and Partners 2016 London Bar section)
    • "Excellent in her analysis of complicated and detailed medical evidence." (Legal 500 2015)
    •  “She is understated but very effective, hard working and careful in her approach” (Chambers and Partners London Bar section 2015)
    • ‘Understated but extremely hardworking, reliable and a very effective advocate.’ (Legal 500 2014 London Bar)
    • "While handling a broad range of family law matters, Jane Crowley QC is particularly praised for her experience with public law children cases and in all matters relating to child abuse." Expertise: "She has an excellent manner with clients, especially when handling difficult cases."  "Jane Crowley QC is highly experienced in both public and private law children work, and offers particular expertise in proceedings where there has been an unexplained death. She also handles cases involving honour-based violence and is skilled at representing vulnerable parents. Sources identify the "excellent manner" in which she works with clients." (Chambers UK 2013 London Bar)

    • 'Jane Crowley QC can draw on her criminal law expertise in the most complex childcare cases. Her work often involves serious non-accidental injury issues'.
(Chambers UK 2012)

    • ‘Jane Crowley is particularly applauded for her public children work’.
(Chambers UK 2011)

    • Jane Crowley QC and Jonathan Furness QC.both have a reputation for handling care cases involving violence’ (Legal 500 2011)

    • ‘Jane Crowley QC is considered “brilliant to have on a case” because she is “hard working and personable”’. (Chambers UK 2009)

    • ‘Jane Crowley QC combines expertise in child care proceedings with work in several other areas that significantly overlap; education, mental health and criminal law’ (Chambers UK 2008)

    • ‘Jane Crowley is a formidable children law practitioner (Legal 500 2007)
    • ‘Jane Crowley QC is well known for her children practice and solicitors speak of her as being “charming and approachable’”. (Chambers UK 2007)
  • Appointments
    • 1992 Assistant Recorder
    • 1996 Recorder
    • 1998 Silk
    • 1999 Deputy High Court Judge (Family Division)
    • 2000 Legal President Mental Health Review Tribunal
    • Bencher of Gray's Inn
    • Member of the Family Law Bar Association
    • Committee member of the national committee of the Association of Lawyers for Children
    • Member of the Advisory Group on Guidance in Anonymisation of Children Judgments, chaired by Professor Julia Brophy 
    • Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and Institute of Family Arbitrators (IFLA)
  • Education & Qualification
    • LLB Hons King’s College London 1975.
  • Awards
    • Gray’s Inn award 1976
    • Welsh Legal Awards voted winner of the Q.C. category in the inaugural awards in 2003.