Portrait of Christopher Butterfield

Christopher Butterfield

Year of Call 2004

Professional Practice

Chris practises across the full range of family law work with a particular emphasis or both private and public children work, often including international issues and complex fact-finding hearings involving disputed medical evidence. Chris is also regularly instructed in financial remedy proceedings, including those involving international issues, trusts and company assets. Recently, Chris has appeared against numerous silks in two strands of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.
  • Recommendations

    "Christopher takes pride in his preparation, which is always meticulous. He will do all that he can to achieve a settlement without recourse to the court arena, but will fight his clients corner. He is strategic and appears one step, if not two steps, ahead of his opponent. Tenacious once in court. Well capable in any level of court, leaving no stone unturned."
    Legal 500 2022
    “A master of the Children Act. A thorough researcher who leaves no stone unturned and learns the client’s case to the finest detail. An efficient, eloquent and perhaps stealth-like advocate at ease in any level of courtroom.”
    Legal 500 2021
  • Notable Cases

    • Re Z (a child) (2nd judgment)
      [2021] EWHC 559 (Fam)
    • Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse: Child Sexual Exploitation by Organised Networks

    • Re Z (a child: DOLS: lack of secure placement)
      [2020] EWHC 1928 (Fam)
    • Birmingham Children’s Trust v K
      [2020] EWHC 861 (Fam)
    • Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse: The Internet

      Read Judgment
    • Re: D (a child)
      [2014] EWFC B188
    • Re B (A Child)
      [2014] 1 FLR 900
    • Devon County Council v EB & Ors (Minors)
      [2013] EWHC 968 (Fam)
    • A v B (jurisdiction)
      [2012] 1 FLR 768
    • Re B (care order: adjournment of fact-finding hearing)
      [2010] 2 FLR 1445
    • Re J (leave to remove: urgent case)
      [2007] 1 FLR 2033
  • Publications and Lecturing

    • Author of the Children chapter in Cohabitation: Law and Precedents, Sweet & Maxwell

    • Contributor to the Oxford Handbook on Forensic Psychiatry (forthcoming)

    • Frequently lectures on topics across the field of family law.  Recent lectures have included: international relocation; financial remedies updates and children law arbitration

  • Personal Information

    MA (Cantab) 1st class – Emmanuel College, Cambridge.

    LLM – King’s College London.

    Diplôme universitaire d’études juridique françaises - Université de Poitiers, France

    Chris has four young children. When time allows, he enjoys mountain walking and scrambling and running occasional half marathons.


  • Family Law Bar Association
  • Bar Pro Bono Unit