Photograph of our Family Team

At Stephens Scown, we have a large and dedicated family team, that are expertly trained to help you, no matter the complexity. Over the following months, we would like to introduce you to members of our team, so you can get to know us just that little bit better.

Today, we meet Andy Barton, Lizzie Smith and Tamsin Best, solicitors from our Exeter, Taunton and Cornwall offices.

Andy Barton

Andy Barton is Partner and Head of the Family Team at Stephens Scown, having joined the firm as a Trainee Solicitor in 2001. Andy, who is based primarily in our Exeter office, specialises in matrimonial finances on divorce, particularly high value and complex financial work.

Andy is described by his colleagues as detailed, logical and a brilliant problem solver. He is respected (and, at times, teased) for his technical wizardry and love of spreadsheets.

What do you think clients should look for in a family lawyer?

You need your family lawyer to speak your language. You will be relying on them at a pivotal point in your life and having the confidence to trust their guidance comes far easier if you feel you can communicate with them.

What do you think are your biggest strengths?

In this role, I think it is strategy, planning and problem solving.

What was the first CD you bought?

Michael Jackson’s Thriller

Describe a passion you have outside of work.

Music – both playing piano and music production. I have recently taken to remixing 80s classic hits in my home studio.

What area of family law do you find most fascinating and why?

I am a numbers person, so this fits well with the financial divorce work that I do.

Lizzie Smith

Lizzie Smith is a Partner in our Taunton Office. Lizzie qualified in 2012 and joined us in 2023 following our expansion into Somerset. Lizzie is a key member of Resolution Somerset, a group of family law professionals committed to resolving family matters constructively. Lizzie advises on all issues arising on divorce, including finances, arrangements for children and injunctive relief.

Those working with Lizzie describe her as calm, patient and a good listener. She is recognised for her attention to detail and adaptability.

What job would you want if you were not in your current role?

If talent didn’t matter, I would love to be in musical theatre, either performing or backstage! Alternatively, I would like to do something that requires being out outdoors, so a landscape gardener perhaps.

What do you think are your biggest strengths?

I think I am a good lawyer, but also have patience and compassion, which allow me to guide clients through such difficult times in their lives.

Describe your role within the team and what do you like most about it?

I am a Partner in the team, which means not only to I advise clients on family law issues, but I also get to co-work with a wide range of colleagues in the team, supervising them and giving input on cases. I love being able to share my knowledge and experience with others and helping them to develop.

What do you like about working for Stephens Scown?

I love that all my colleagues are friendly as well as committed to our clients. There is a genuine emphasis on work-life balance. This is not easy balance in law, but the firm does this really well.  

What is something you have always wanted to do but have not yet done?

Go on safari in Africa, visit Antarctica and to run a half marathon.

Tamsin Best

Tamsin Best is a solicitor based in our Truro Office, who qualified into our Family Team in 2023. Tamsin deals primarily with spouses and civil partners seeking to resolve their finances on divorce or dissolution.

Tamsin is recognised for being kind and compassionate alongside her thorough and diligent approach.

What do you think clients should look for in a family lawyer?

Someone they can trust and who will act pragmatically for them to achieve a fair settlement. Someone who is family focused and strives to help parties reach a settlement swiftly and amicably.

What is your biggest achievement in or outside of work?

Distinction in my Legal Practice Course/Business Law and Practice Masters.

Describe a passion you have outside of work.

Netball and spending time with family.

What do you like about working for Stephens Scown?

It has a strong presence and reputation across the Southwest as being a leading law firm. I was born in Cornwall and have always wanted to work at Stephens Scown.  

What area of family law do you find most fascinating and why?

Pensions – which are often overlooked by parties on divorce but can be one of their biggest assets.


We hope you enjoyed taking a dive into what makes us, us!

Make sure to come back for our next edition of ‘An Interview with our Family Team’ to meet more of our legal experts.