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Martin Searle Solicitors

Carolyn Hunnisett

CHC Specialist & Community Care Lawyer


“I am an experienced community care lawyer with a background in mental health and continuing health care.”


Law degree at the University of Sussex; specialising in Medical law, Corporate Governance and Commercial Law. I was runner up in the Donne, Mileham & Haddock negotiating competition; have experience working in the Magistrates Court; and have successfully represented employees on a pro bono basis at Employment Tribunals.

I went to bar school in Bristol and studied a Post Graduate Diploma in Advocacy & BVC Studies, at the University of the West of England; specialising in Medical Negligence and Mediation. I undertook a placement observing the Hague War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague.

Called to the bar in 2002 as an Honourable Society Member of the Middle Temple.

Studied for a Post Graduate Diploma in Occupational Therapy at the University of Brighton. And then pursued a Masters in Health through Occupation; with a thesis on Health Perspectives on the Mental Capacity Act.

Other experience

  • Continuing Care Adviser, Continuing Care Manager, And Advocacy Service Manager For Age Concern Oxfordshire.
  • Continuing Care role, responsible for the county of Oxfordshire. Advising, representing, challenging for clients in the retrospective continuing care process. I ran training on Powers of Attorney to Volunteers and training to Carers groups and other local organisation on Continuing Care.
  • Advocacy Service Manager – ran paid team and volunteer team responsible for Advocacy contract throughout Oxfordshire.
  • Part of the consultation process on the Mental Capacity Act before came into force.
  • Worked as a psychiatric Occupational Therapist in a NHS Psychiatric Hospital. Conducted Mental Capacity Assessments, delivered psychiatric interventions, CPA Reviews, and attended Mental Health Tribunals. Assisted Hospital Manager within CQC, MHA & MCA policy and application. Designed a CQC Audit tool. Jointly ran recovery group. Delivered MCA training to staff. Involved in MCA Assessments re safe guarding alerts.
  • Undertaken Masters level courses in anatomy, physiology, and psychology in relation to occupational function or dysfunction.
    Carried out placements in Physical and Psychiatric settings across East Sussex. Stroke/Neuro, Paediatrics/Dementia/Early Intervention Team/Inpatient psychiatric/Adaptation team at Social Services. Whilst on my Early Intervention placement I designed a young person’s interest checklist which was then adopted by Sussex Partnership as a tool across its counties.
  • Volunteer in assisted Power mobility class at Chailey Heritage.
  • Volunteer Mediator for Mediation Bucks and Eastbourne: mediated in a range of neighbourhood and family disputes. Completed a Commercial Mediation course.
  • Housing Rights Volunteer.
  • Local Community Advice Centre Volunteer.

I have a life too

I love creative writing, and have belonged to a class for the last 2 ½ years. I contributed to our book for the Eastbourne Festival, written and performed comedy sketches/satirical pieces. I love painting, festivals, comedy and indie/rock music. Best of all, I value spending time with friends and my daughter.

Get in touch with Carolyn

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