Legal Defence for Psychotherapists, Psychoanalysts and Counsellors

Professionals that need to work alone with patients are amongst those most exposed to having a complaint made about their professional conduct.

Our band 1 Chambers and Partners ranked team has a proven track record in securing fair and just outcomes in cases brought against ‘talking professionals’ by professional organisations such as the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP), the British Psychoanalytical Council (BPC), the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and the Association of Child Psychotherapists.

We have extensive experience in assisting professionals, both in the successful resolution of complaints made against them and in holding regulators to account, including through challenging the fairness of their procedures for resolving complaints in judicial review challenges. 

Clients come to us when they are facing allegations made by their professional body, often arising out of their treatment of a patient or due to a matter arising in their personal life which is said to affect their ability to remain registered.

“Kingsley Napley’s professional discipline team combines first rate legal expertise with humanity. Sophie Kemp and Julie Norris navigated my way through a complex professional disciplinary hearing and meticulously argued my case.  I emerged vindicated and with deep respect for my industrious and thoughtful lawyers. Thank you very much.”

Psychoanalyst Client, 2014

Many professionals believe that following a complaint, their open and direct early engagement with their regulator will ensure that the matter is ‘closed down early’ and will just ‘go away’. Sadly, our experience tells us that this is rarely the case; early legal advice can make a crucial difference to the outcome in these disciplinary cases. 

When we represent mental health professionals, our first task is to work to ensure that the regulator conducts a thorough and fair investigation; this is often the key to a successful outcome. Preparation for any disciplinary hearing that follows can often include the instruction of experts, the tracing and interviewing of witnesses and, where appropriate, demonstration of insight and a willingness to adapt and change their practise.

Having worked for professionals in this sector for a number of years in some of the most complex cases, we have a deep understanding of the often difficult task of providing therapeutic support to challenging patients. We also know how easy it is for complaints to be made against professionals and how best to respond to any unfounded allegations. 

For more information or to speak to one of the team, please contact Julie Norris or Sian Jones

Recent work


...'They understand that there are risks in everything one does and we work together in mitigating the risks'.

Chambers UK, A Client's Guide to the UK Legal Profession,  2014

...'The lawyers are able to present cases to an exceptional standard, in terms of both advocacy and legal principles'...

Chambers UK, A Client's Guide to the UK Legal Profession,  2014

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