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Melissa Vaughan

Year of Call
Law at University of Leeds
Year of Call
Law at University of Leeds

Starting in August 2019
Melissa is a barrister speacialising in family law, with a particular emphasis on private and public children proceedings. She has appeared at all levels up to and including the High Court and has been led by more senior members of the bar.

Melissa is approachable, measured and conscientious. She regularly develops strong professional rapports with clients. She is a popular choice with clients and instructing solicitors.

Private Children Law Proceedings

In the private law sector, Melissa has represented parents seeking child arrangement orders, including applications for prohibited steps orders, specific issue orders and parental responsibility. She has significant experience in private law disputes about a child’s living arrangements and/or who they spend time with. Melissa has appeared in cases of legal and factual complexity, including those involving vulnerable parents, domestic violence, parental alienation and high conflict disputes including cases where Rule 16.4 Guardians are appointed.

Public Children Law Proceedings

Melissa has developed a busy and varied practice, regularly appearing in the Family Court representing parents, guardians, interveners and local authorities in public law proceedings. Melissa represents clients regularly on complex multi-day hearings. Her caseload has involved suspected neglectful parenting, physical, emotional and sexual abuse, substance abuse, non-accidental injuries and radicalisation issues.

Family Law Act Proceedings

Melissa is regularly instructed on Family Law Act applications, including Non-Molestation Orders and Occupation Orders.

Direct Access

Melissa is accredited under the Direct Access scheme and welcomes instructions directly from members of the public in appropriate matters.


Melissa accepts instructions for MOJ Stage 3 hearings and Infant Approvals. Melissa accepts instructions for drafting and provides advice on quantum using the Judicial College Guidelines and relevant case law.

Melissa read Law at University of Leeds, before undertaking the Bar Professional Training Course. She is a confident orator. Having completed the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts (L.A.M.D.A) with distinction, she has the confidence and ability to be clear and concise when making submissions in Court.

Notable and Reported Cases