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Laxmi leads the SEN team at Boyes Turner -
She works closely with parents, schools, local authorities and case managers to ensure that children and young people with SEND receive the support they need to achieve their potential in their education.
Laxmi has extensive expertise in helping children with both profound and subtle difficulties. She has successfully pursued cases for children with complex and wide-ranging learning disabilities from cerebral palsy, autistic spectrum disorder, Asperger's syndrome, speech and language difficulties, hearing and visual impairment, Down's syndrome, dyslexia/dyspraxia, emotional behavioural difficulties, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and sensory processing disorder.
She guides parents through every stage of their child’s statutory assessment process and conducts appeals to SENDIST against local authority refusals to conduct Education, Health and Care (EHC) needs assessments, refusals to issue Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCP), and EHCP contents, including the named school.
Working closely with parents to achieve the child’s optimum outcome, Laxmi has secured tri-partite funding from education, health and social services and has successfully led cases for independent/non-maintained residential schools. She supports the parents at meetings with the local authority, experts and the school to resolve issues as smoothly and efficiently as possible.
Laxmi is recognised as a SEND expert and is invited regularly to share her knowledge on changes to SEND legislation, government guidance and changes to practice and procedure for charities and events. She provides seminars on best practice to parents, case managers, schools and experts and regularly offers advice on how parents can support their children with SEND through the EHCP.
Laxmi is a committee member of the Education Law Association (ELAS). In 2019 she was shortlisted for the Legal 500 Lawyer of the Year award. She is listed in the Legal 500 and Chambers as a leading SEN solicitor:
“Laxmi Patel regularly acts for clients in SEND Tribunal appeals concerning an array of matters, including provision and placement in special schools. She is noted for her proficiency in cases concerning highly sensitive social care elements.
"She sees the bigger picture of how the legal situation and child's situation intersect on cases." "She is very thorough and has both exceptional technical knowledge and excellent client care." "She is organised, knowledgeable and inspires confidence." (Chambers 2021)
Questions they have asked
Questions they have answered
Is the EHCP a legal document? If yes, does my child have a legal right to support?
I am due at Tribunal next week over 1:1. The LA have not engaged at all - no witnesses submitted and zero progress on the working document. The court ...
... has ordered the LA to submit this by midday tomorrow. Can I ask for them to be struck out?
We have received a refusal to issue an EHCP from our local authority and have appealed the decision. We are now progressing to tribunal and have been ...
... asked to provide witnesses. The school are not supporting us in our application for an EHCP as they cannot “see” the challenges that our son has, despite his diagnosis of autism.
The LA’s witnesses are the school SENCO, educational psychologist and a solicitor. So far, we have no one to be a witness as he has not received support from external parties since his diagnosis 2.5 years ago. We have asked the diagnosing psychologist but she would need to reevaluate him and will charge for this. She recommended that it may be better if we ask an independent educational psychologist to evaluate him.
Do we need to have witnesses to strengthen our cases and if so who else can we ask? Would legal representation be wise? We are concerned that won’t win this due to lack of school support and understanding and are not certain that paying new witnesses is the answer.
Any advice welcomed.
We were issued an EHCP over the summer for my 7 yr old daughter which left out SALT and OT input, even though we supplied very detailed private ...
... assessments in both these areas - these are the two largest areas of need. The LA told us they would update the EHCP when the NHS OT/SALT had seen our daughter. As the time was running out for mediation or appeal to be triggered and we still had an EHCP that was not fit for purpose, we initiated mediation. Mediation is now December, the OT and SALT reports have just been done. Yesterday, through the mediator, the LA sent the NHS OT and SALT reports with a word version of the current EHCP, and asked us to mark up what changes we want. Are parents really expected to write the EHCP's with no qualifications, having no idea of what a good EHCP should look like? I'd like to know what should happen in the process, and what's the most practical thing for us to do now - if the best shot at getting what we need is to go back and pay a private EP to review and make changes, then I'll have to take it, but seems unbelievably unfair. Doubt they will do it in time of our December mediation date, in which case we will have to move the mediation date. Any advice would be really appreciated! Thank you.
We have just been rejected for the second time for a PIP application for my 31-year old adult son who has recently been diagnosed with Severe Autism ...
... level 2 'requiring substantial support'. We are appealing, so now it goes to HM Courts & Tribunal Service. I am feeling completely overwhelmed and out-of-my-depth, and as his Mum I am aware I have no legal experience or expertise, and we are only allowed one hearing. Is anyone able to offer me any legal advice and/or support?
We are currently undergoing our daughters first EHCP review. The educational psychologist who was initially contacted as part of the EHCP as responded ...
... to the nursery’s request to review /update the plan and has asked the nursery setting for payment of three hours of their time. The nursery has forwarded the request to us. The educational psychologist is instructed as part of the NHS and we are confused as to the payment. We have queried this but no response and are now concerned that it may delay the review. Any advice welcome please.
If a child with an EHCP is excluded would that trigger an emergency review? (Or simply result in them being chucked into the next available mainstream ...