James has a diverse practice at Blackburn Chambers in Canberra. His focus is on family law with a particular emphasis on complex parenting and property disputes. James also routinely deals with care and protection and Family Violence Order matters. James has experience with complex advocacy, appellate, and appearance work in the Federal Circuit Court, The Family Court, the Children’s Court and the Supreme Court. James is immediate past Vice President of the Canberra Region Family Law Professionals Association.
In 2018 & 2019 James was recognised as a Leading Family Law Barrister for the ACT in Doyle’s Guide.
James has no interest in achieving a work/life balance as he believes work is life. And he has no interest in golf. He has an unfortunate addiction to peanut MnMs and Twix bars.
- Sasko and Radavich  FamCAFC 179. This matter involved a complex appeal from a final
parenting determination. Appearance as the Independent Children’s Lawyer. Sought and achieved
dismissal of the appeal with an order for costs.
- Phillips and Hansford  FamCAFC 46—This matter involved application to extend time for an
appeal. Appeared and achieved outcome sought.
- Holsworth and Holsworth  FamCAFC 98. This matter involved two complex appeals made by
a mother to an interim parenting determination. Appeared as Independent Children’s Lawyer.
Achieved dismissal of the appeal and order for costs as sought.
- Rasmussen and Rasmussen and Anor  FamCA 1002. This matter involved complex interim
parenting arrangements. Achieved orders sought.
- Geary and Maddigan and Anor  FamCA 1069. This matter involved complex parenting
proceedings including allegations of physical and sexual assault of a child. Achieved orders sought.
- Gatting and Snell and Ors  FamCA 777. This matter involved a major parenting dispute and a
nine-day hearing. Appeared as Independent Children’s Lawyer and achieved outcome sought.
- Dundas and Duffy and Ors  FCCA 1928—Complex parenting matter involving indigenous
cultural issues and interim adjournment application during trial. Appeared as Independent Children’s
Lawyer and achieved outcome sought.
- Keeley and Ness  FCCA 644—Parenting matter involving relocation. Appeared for the
applicant mother. Alternative Orders Sought adopted by the Court.
- Giddens and Giddens  FCCA 3201—Contempt proceedings. Appeared for party in contempt.
Client received lowest custodial sentence ever ordered in family law proceedings for offence of that
- CP & Director-General, Community Services Directorate  ACTCA 23- Major care and protection proceedings leading to ACT Legislative Assembly enquiry into the ACT’s Care and Protection System.
- Director of Public Prosecutions v Booth  ACTCA 8- Case stated to Court of Appeal on claim of right in criminal proceedings.
- Salt & Salt  FamCA 10- defending stay application following major unacceptable risk trial.
- Dawar & Dawar  FamCA 569- defending an application for disqualification on the basis of apprehension of bias.
- Hasila & Fatisa (no 2.)  FamCA 622- 8 day major unacceptable risk case for no time successfully made out with findings of credit made against the father.
- ‘Diversity is the Heart of the Bar: Diversity at the Bar the Next 100 Years’  ACT Bar Association Journal.
- ‘Assessing Expert Reports: How to Assess Expert Evidence as a Lawyer’  NSW Southern Slopes Law Society & Blackburn Chambers.
- ‘The ICE Epidemic: Drugs in Family Law’  Canberra Regional Family Law Professionals Association.
- ‘Expert Evidence: The Tricks and Pitfalls’  ACT Young Lawyer’s Committee.
- ‘Conducting Interlocutory Proceedings’  ACT Young Lawyer’s Committee.
- ‘Interim Proceedings in Family Law’  Canberra Regional Family Law Professionals Association.
- ‘Acting for a Parent in the Children’s Court’  Family Law Pathways Network.