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Kathleen Hallisey

Kathleen is a Senior Associate in the Abuse Team at Hugh James.

Originally from the US, she began her legal career in New York before moving to the UK and becoming a solicitor. Throughout her career, she has exclusively acted on behalf of claimants, including those who suffered catastrophic injuries on the road or at work, were dismissed from their jobs as a result of discrimination, or sexually assaulted on university campuses.

For nearly a decade, Kathleen has focused her practice solely on abuse claims. In 2015, she acted on behalf of a client who brought the first successful claim against the Jehovah’s Witnesses for childhood sexual abuse, A v The Trustees of the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society & Others [2015] EWHC 1722 (QB). Kathleen was so affected by her client’s profound bravery, as well as the obstinate refusal of the Jehovah’s Witness organisation to change its safeguarding policies, that she campaigned with survivors and activists at Westminster and hand delivered a letter to Downing Street urging an inquiry into the issue of child sexual abuse in the organisation.

In the intervening years, she was contacted by survivors of abuse in the Jehovah’s Witnesses from around the world, and in 2017 was privileged to co-host an international conference shedding light on the issue with the Center for Investigative Reporting in the US.

Aside from her deep passion for the issue of abuse in the Jehovah’s Witnesses organisation, Kathleen brings her thirst for justice in acting for all survivors of abuse and has pursued cases against all manner of institutions including the Catholic Church, Church of England, Scouts, Jesus Army and various public schools.

Kathleen is a regular media contributor and has appeared in the BBC, Sky, BBC Radio, Women’s Hour, LBC, The Times, The Guardian, and The Observer Magazine.

Career History

  • Admitted to Massachusetts Bar in 2012
  • Admitted to Law Society of England & Wales in 2009
  • Admitted to NY Bar in 2006