Emily Boardman

Emily Boardman

Emily Boardman is a solicitor and one of the founding partners at Boardman, Hawkins & Osborne LLP.

She studied law at The University of London (SOAS) and obtained her professional qualifications from The College of Law (London). She trained in London and spent 12 years as the head of the family department in another Thames Valley firm before leaving to establish BH&O LLP.

She is a member of the Association of Lawyers for Children and The Law Society’s Children Panel.

Emily undertakes any complex family cases involving children but specialises particularly in cases against social services and private adoptions. She advises fostering and adoption agencies as well.

Accreditation Children Law


Legal guides

Emily is recognised by The Legal 500 as a leading individual in 2021. The guide noted that she ‘works with integrity and child focus’.

Emily has been consistently rated by Chambers & Partners over the last ten years and is currently ranked in Band 2 with published comments such as:

She is “scrupulously thorough in her preparation of a case.”

She is “a force to be reckoned with,” also noting: “She brings considerable experience to her cases and has a no-nonsense, down-to-earth approach which is extremely effective.”

Another source adds: “She shows a great deal of precision and compassion for her clients.” “She is absolutely meticulous in her preparation and attentive to every detail of her cases. Her standard of client care is excellent.”

She is a key individual whose “forte lies in public work involving children”. “She is phenomenally hard-working and goes that extra mile”.

She is “very thorough, with very good client skills, and she will fight hard for her client’s corner.”

Emily Boardman is lauded for her work on cases involving complex medical issues, such as non-accidental injury and fabricated illness matters. Sources say that “she’s very client-focused and doesn’t give up without a fight. She’s hands-on and a good tactical thinker.”



Emily represented a great-aunt in a successful appeal in the Court of Appeal against a Placement and Care Order for her great-nephew. The great-aunt was also successful in obtaining costs against the Local Authority as a result of their conduct of the case. The case was reported [https://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2019/1966.html] and Emily wrote about it for the BH&O website and for The Transparency Project

She represented the Mother in the appeal brought by Louise Tickle (a freelance journalist) and the BBC against a Reporting Restriction Order in the reported case of Re R [2019] EWCA 482 Civ (15 February 2019). Emily wrote about the case here and was featured in The Law Society Gazette speaking about it.

Emily has written two published articles on challenging interim threshold as a consequence of two successful challenges in Re C (permission to withdraw: medical evidence: interim threshold not crossed) [2018] EWFC B37 and Re G (interim threshold) [2017] EWFC B34.

She is the Solicitor referred to by EP in Case for legal aid – from a desperate young mother and represented the Father referred to in ‘It was a routine hospital visit. Baby Maddy wasn’t putting on weight… What happens when the state takes your child away?

She was rated one of the Top 50 Influential Women in Business by Cotswold Life and was shortlisted by Oxfordshire Business Awards in the category of Young Business Person of the Year 2013. She won Employer of the Year 2014 at the Venus Awards 2014.

Emily tweets on behalf of the firm on @BHO_LLP and in her own name on @bho_eb

Read what clients say:

“Emily Boardman has been my solicitor for the past 8 years dealing with an ongoing family matter regarding my children. When I first met Emily I was having tremendous difficulties but from our first meeting she has been an absolute God send. I have always been treated with the upmost respect by Emily’s department. My questions have always been answered fully, truthfully and in great detail – which is very important to me as I always want to know exactly what is going on. When Emily is unavailable at court due to prior previously arranged appointments she has provide excellent council to represent me, so I always have the confidence to go in to court with the knowledge that I am being represented in a truly professional manner. I honestly think that without Emily I would never have got through this whole process and I am so glad that she has always been there for me even if just at the end of the phone as through her hard work, care and understanding I am now getting the results that both myself and my children deserve. Nothing is too much trouble for Emily, calls are always returned as are emails and I know that if needed Emily is always at the other end of the phone. I honestly think that to Emily being a solicitor is not just a job, because she does more than just a job. I know for a fact that she has been working on my behalf in the early hours of the morning on occasions as I have received emails from her at the unearthly times. I would have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Emily to anyone who has a family problem that needed legal help. I will never be able to thank Emily enough for the help she has given to me which ultimately has helped my children.”

“I simply cannot recommend Emily Boardman highly enough. Completely professional, incredibly motivated, someone who does a sometimes difficult and stressful job to the very best of her considerable ability. Emily is someone who fights your corner when you need it most – with intensity, a ferocity and passion to get the best for you – her client – that even in the darkest moments – gives you hope. Emily doesn’t sugar coat any situation – she gives it to you straight – however she always judges – almost uncannily accurately – when you do and do not need information, and the best times to inform you. With Emily you get someone who is really, really good at her job – someone who listens and helps you make the best possible decisions in often the most distressing of circumstances. You never get the feeling that Emily is “just” doing her job – going through the motions – and that is because you will be working with someone who really cares, passionately about helping you; about doing the best for you. And she does this very, very well. What Emily Boardman did for me – and my family – can never be adequately paid for; always available to listen and offer good advice – from the very beginning Emily gave a service that was first class. If you need someone professional, who you can rely on to do the very, very best for you, you can rest assured that Emily is that person. Speaking personally, and honestly, I knew from the very beginning that whatever the outcome – I had the fortune of being represented by someone who actually gave a damn, someone I came to, over a very short period of time, respect for her ability, insight and thorough professionalism. Emily won my particular case – but there was always the feeling that, if she couldn’t do it – no one could. That’s how she makes you feel, because that is the way it is.”

“I would be happy to endorse anything to do with you – I mean we are living proof positive – an end result of the hard work you have put into our case.”

“I was listened to and did not feel patronized.”

“Your accompaniment of this process and of us – our family – has been such a gift. I have felt your commitment to finding a way to correct what should have been possible many years ago. We hope that with efforts like yours, unusual families will find fewer obstacles in the future.”

“I want to take this opportunity to thank you for sticking with me, your patience and clarity with which you explained the various steps. Above all, I want to thank you for your assertiveness and optimism that our case was doable. Thanks a lot. You have no idea what this means to us.”

“I am so indebted to my solicitor. She was unbelievably supportive. It was more than just a professional relationship. She helped me see that I was never going to improve my life unless I got out of my abusive marriage. When I was at my worst I needed someone whose professional duty it was to be honest with me.”

“Emily is very friendly and understandable. Gave good advice and legal support. I just want to thank Emily for help, her support and listening ear – much appreciated.”

“The firm’s excellence is not confined to the actual practice of law – clients find that they are treated with respect and courtesy in often fraught circumstances.”

“Emily Boardman and another solicitor from her team recently delivered valuable training to the Children’s Centre. They presented up-to-the-minute information on the forthcoming changes to Legal Aid in an informal manner which, with help of handouts, made a complicated topic easy to understand. My team found the in-depth subject knowledge extremely useful, particularly in relation to the work we do with families experiencing domestic abuse. For Emily I’d say it was more than a job, that she has a deep commitment to seeing justice carried out for all members of society, that as well as possessing a formidable expertise and knowledge of her subject she also holds very strong values about people’s rights, fairness, how they are treated etc that drive her and her work.”


Direct: 01235 425501

Reported cases and articles:

Boardman, Hawkins & Osborne articles:

Reflections on National Adoption Week

October 17, 2022

I am a trustee at Adoption UK and I am a family solicitor. I represent birth families and children i


The Somerset case – Part two

April 14, 2022

In February I wrote an article that summarised the first Judgment in relation to the Somerset cases


The Somerset case on non-compliant Placement Orders

February 10, 2022

See also: The Somerset case – Part two In November 2021 a case went to court that has sent shock w


Applying for a Child Arrangements Order without a lawyer

April 09, 2021

A Child Arrangements Order is an order that sets out arrangements for a child – that is most commo


Two years in
(aka ‘Lawyers in Lockdown’)

August 24, 2020

2020 has been an odd year for us all but on 1 September BH&O LLP turns two years old. Like other


Re W – a successful appeal against a placement and care order (and a costs order against the LA)

February 25, 2020

Article originally published on transparencyproject.org.uk The background  The appellant is the


Appeal, revoke or discharge? How to get your child back after care proceedings conclude.

November 17, 2022

One of the most common enquiries we get is from birth parents who want to challenge a decision to re


The Family Law Awards 2019

September 02, 2019

Yesterday was the first anniversary of opening this firm and I could not be prouder to announce that


Why are we excited about in-house therapeutic services?

June 11, 2019

I remember many years ago hearing about a firm who were offering clients therapy alongside their div


Transparency in the family courts and a trip to the Court of Appeal

February 19, 2019

Lawyers like the Court of Appeal. The Judges are experienced, engaged, always ask insightful questio


What to do if you are accused of causing injuries to your child

November 16, 2022

I first wrote this article in 2018 and I am updating it because parents still need this advice, and


Two months in…

November 06, 2018

On 3 September 2018 Ruth, Irena and I opened this new firm – Boardman, Hawkins & Osborne LLP.


A new family law firm for Oxfordshire

August 06, 2018

On 3 September 2018 Emily Boardman, Ruth Hawkins and Irena Osborne are opening a new family law firm