Our Team


Rachel Carter

Why do I do what I do?

I enjoy helping people.

So luckily, I have found myself in a profession where I can help people protect their families, businesses and life legacies.

I have found that at a certain age you have established yourself and built a life that you suddenly realise is worth protecting. You have worked hard in your business and want to see it flourish after you pass on the reins. You have a partner or spouse and want to provide for them if the worst were to happen. You want to ensure that your children are not only financially provided for, but raised in accordance with your values and the visions you have for them, especially if through no fault you are not around for them. At a certain time in your life you start to ask bigger questions about your place in the world and the legacy that you want to leave.

As life moves along people become concerned with protecting the things that are important to them. I found that generally people will turn their mind to protecting businesses that they have devoted time, energy and money to build. They wish to protect their family and children and to ensure that they have the lifestyle and needs they are accustomed to. People will also want to think about what legacy they leave behind. whether that is community works and charitable contributions; businesses that make an impact on the community around them; or establishing a future for their children.

These are the things I can help with.

What do I enjoy outside of law?

When not in the office, I have a collection of animals (dogs, horses, husband) that vie for my attention. I’m an avid skier, but am at an age where I try to stay out of hospital where possible. I enjoy ballet, though due to skill level - watching rather than performing. I particularly enjoy food, though not sure that qualifies as a hobby.

Select Cases (as instructing solicitor and solicitor advocate)

  • Marrow & Periwinkle[2018] FamCA 637 – Family Law – Parental Responsibility – Where both parents seek that they have sole parental responsibility for the children – agreed family violence – children live with Mother -children spend no time with Father
  • Rodi v Gelonesi[2016] NSWCA 348 – Commercial Litigation – Successful dismissal of costs variation Application
  • Hilton & DFCS [2015] FamCA 965 – International Family Law – Hague Convention Proceedings – Successful Stay Application for the Mother
  • Gough & Martin[2014] FamCA 77 – Family Law – Father successful in Contravention Application – no reasonable excuse for contraventions established by the mother
  • Church v Mason[2012] NSWSC 1489, [2013] NSWCA 481 –Estate Law – knowledge and approval in probate
  • Rodi v Gelonesi[2012] NSWCA 424 – Commercial Litigation- Successful dismissal of Appeal


Professional Qualifications and Memberships:

  • Bachelor of Laws (University of Technology, Sydney)
  • Bachelor of Arts – English, Government and International Relations and Philosophy (University of Sydney)
  • Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice
  • Admitted Solicitor, Supreme Court of NSW and High Court of Australia
  • Legal Practice Management Course (College of Law)
  • Member of the Law Society NSW
  • Member of the Central Coast Law Society
  • Member of the Northern Beaches Law Society
  • Member of the Family Law Section, Law Council of Australia
  • Member of the Mona Vale Chamber of Commerce
  • Member of the Gosford Erina Business Chamber
  • Member of the Hunter Valley Family Law Practitioners Association

Rachel began her legal career in 2005 working in a construction law firm assisting in substantial international construction contract disputes. From there she held various positions in corporate city firms while completing her law degree. Rachel gained experience in civil and commercial litigation, wealth protection, drafting complex wills, trusts, binding financial agreements, property consent orders, advice on business structures, self managed super funds and helping clients with family provision claims, powers of attorney and guardianship matters.

Rachel has worked in estate law since 2008, including estate planning, estate administration and disputed wills and estates.

Rachel is able to combine her extensive experience and elite level of knowledge with a warm and personal approach to her clients. Her ability to share clear explanations of often complex issues along with her strong negotiation and communication skills makes her the legal representative of choice for many clients on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.

With a newly established office in Gosford, the firm now also represents clients on the Central Coast.

Prior to founding Carter O’Neill, Rachel was director of GP Legal in Dee Why, working for private and business clients in family and estate litigation matters.


Call our Mona Vale office on 02 9151 7339

Call our Gosford office on 02 4308 8892


Tayleh Soames

As a new solicitor, Tayleh brings four years of legal work experience and a fresh perspective to client needs fully supporting the team and advancing her interests in family and estate law.

Tayleh’s Qualifications

Tayleh Soames was raised in the Central Coast region of New South Wales and commenced a Bachelor of Laws at the University of New England in 2017. Whilst studying full time, Tayleh worked full-time as a paralegal focusing predominately in the area of Family Law. In 2020, Tayleh completed her Law degree and her Diploma of Legal Practice. Tayleh was admitted to the Supreme Court of New South Wales in 2020 and the High Court of Australia in 2021.

Tayleh is currently studying a Master of Laws (Applied Law) majoring in Estate Planning and Family Law to broaden her knowledge and help assist her clients on more complex matters.

Tayleh’s Approach

Tayleh is passionate about pursuing just outcomes for her clients and enjoys taking the time required to assist her clients to make informed decisions about their matters. Tayleh assists her clients with a personal and empathic approach to ensure her clients feel supported throughout the entirety of the family law process.

When Tayleh commenced working in the legal industry in 2017, she was always drawn to the area of Family Law and finds gratification in this more personable side of law. It is a priority to Tayleh that her clients receive what they are entitled to as efficiently as possible so they can move forward from what is often a very confusing and stressful time in their lives.

Tayleh has successfully prepared for and conducted financial and parenting cases in the Federal Circuit Court located at Sydney, Parramatta, and Newcastle.

Other Areas of Law

Tayleh is also skilled in the following areas:

  • Property Law
  • Estate Law
  • Debt recovery

Outside of Carter O’Neill Legal

Outside of work, you might find Tayleh playing for Gosford on the football field or camping at her husband’s farm in Gulgong. Otherwise Tayleh spends time with her family, friends, dogs (Ouzo and Booka) and cat (Stitch).

Contact Tayleh at tayleh@carteroneill.com.au

Marketing & PR

Olivia Robinson

With experience in a range of marketing and PR roles, Olivia keeps the firm fresh and relevant, helping us to provide clients and followers with useful, informative and sometimes entertaining legal updates. Attending to social media and branding, she balances work life and a young family.

Support Staff

We have support staff in the forms of both virtual reception, consultants and casual staff, meaning we can be fully operational for your legal needs, while keeping our costs competitive.

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Any questions? Get in Contact!