1 King's Bench Walk

Family/Matrimonial Department

London (Bar)
Current View:

This content is provided by Chambers. Learn more about our methodology

A popular choice for high-profile children and matrimonial finance matters. Individuals here have practices that encompass both domestic and cross-border disputes, and expertise in the handling of child abduction, adoption and surrogacy cases. The barristers are sought after by high net worth, often international, clients as well as a host of professionals to handle complex proceedings. The set's money practice, in particular, receives unanimous praise, with practitioners taking on the full gamut of high-value, financial disputes before the highest courts in the country. Specific prowess exists in cases involving prenuptial disputes, Schedule 1, offshore trusts, TOLATA, and many more. One source says: "The set is fantastic. It has a blend of the best barristers in the business. The members here are personable and approachable, and the quality of their knowledge is second to none."

Client service: An interviewee describes the clerks as "helpful and flexible," adding that "they will move heaven and earth to find replacements if a barrister is ill at the last minute." Another source describes Chris Gittins the senior clerk as "a breath of fresh air who, with the rest of the excellent clerking team, makes 1KBW a pleasure to work with."

Alex Tatton-Bennett

A junior on the rise with a rapidly growing practice in high-value matrimonial finance and divorce. He is experienced in handling Schedule 1 proceedings.
Strengths: "His excellent client manner is matched by his keen, insightful legal knowledge and expertise." "An impeccably prepared and extremely strong barrister." "He develops good relationships with his clients and always knows his papers backwards."

Alexander Chandler

Specialised matrimonial finance practitioner acting in substantial disputes over assets. He is noted for his handling of complex issues surrounding Schedule 1 and TOLATA applications. Chandler sits part-time as a deputy district judge.
Strengths: "Calmly self-assured, highly knowledgeable, and someone who exudes a relaxed, confident presence in court." "He has an intellectual inquisitiveness and a great grasp of the historical changes in the law." "Deals with cases intelligently and sensibly."
Recent work: Represented a husband in a High Court hearing which lasted 15 days. The client had not complied with multiple £2 million payment orders to his ex-wife.

Anna McKenna QC

A specialist children law practitioner who has particular strength in handling public law matters, and is an expert in surrogacy and non-accidental injury cases. She also boasts strength in private law children cases, including those involving jurisdictional disputes and abductions.
Strengths: "Anna does everything with considerable charm and persuasiveness, getting everyone on board." "She offers amazing client service, out-of-this-world advocacy and spot-on advice."

Caroline Lister

Has a broad practice covering both high net worth ancillary relief and international private children cases. She has expertise in skilfully handling particularly acrimonious proceedings. Lister is at home with Schedule 1 cases and other complex financial issues, including those relating to assets and inheritance. She also has experience in child arrangement orders and education matters.
Strengths: "She is robust and really gets stuck in. If you want someone to have a fight she is prepared to do it." "She is absolutely fantastic with vulnerable clients and gives them the advice they need to hear." "A tough advocate who makes you worry when you are against her."

Charles Howard QC

Heavy-hitting family practitioner who demonstrates notable expertise in significant matrimonial finance and complex private children matters. He has extensive experience of handling international matters including abduction and enforcement cases. His practice before joining the set included a wide range of civil law.
Strengths: "Always prepared to put up a tough fight but realistic with clients and very honest about their prospects of success. His clients go into a case with their eyes wide open."

Charlotte Hartley

Junior barrister with noted ability in financial remedy cases, and a practice relating to multi-jurisdictional disputes. She has further experience in contested private children proceedings involving allegations of domestic violence and abuse, and has earned a reputation as a rising star.
Strengths: "Hard-working, excellent on paper, and someone with the ear of the court." "She has a great rapport with clients and is commercial in the way she approaches matters, swiftly identifying the key issues." "She has an enormous brain which is brilliant for cases with unusual elements."

Christopher Pocock QC

A highly experienced financial silk who routinely handles proceedings for high net worth individuals. He is noted for his expert knowledge of complex tax, corporate and asset structures as they relate to family law. He is further noted for his expertise as an FDR judge.
Strengths: "Extremely bright, detailed, and able to get on top of everything at a moment's notice. He is able to manage difficult clients and give them straightforward advice that they do not want to hear. He gets the judges' attention through his gravitas." "He is extremely thorough and manages to imbue the FDR process with a proper judicial feel. His preparation is extraordinary."

Deborah Eaton QC

Pre-eminent silk in family law renowned for her tremendous knowledge of private law children matters. Her practice is strong on complex leave to remove and abduction matters, many of which have an international aspect to them. Eaton has an immense reputation in the market for her incredible courtroom advocacy and strategic vision.
Strengths: "She is sympathetic to the clients' situation but gives them firm advice. Judges listen to her."

Deepak Nagpal

Widely venerated for his acuity and encyclopedic legal knowledge, he is admired by instructing solicitors for his strong command of matters involving international jurisdictions. He boasts a number of appearances in high-value divorce cases and is a regular fixture in the High Court.
Strengths: "Phenomenally intelligent and provides concise yet detailed advice on jurisdictional matters." "He has a forensic level of knowledge, particularly in the field of pensions and trusts." "His knowledge of the law is unsurpassed even by silks, and he picks up on really intricate, clever points."
Recent work: Acted in Villiers v Villiers, appearing on behalf of the government before the Supreme Court.

Elizabeth Selman

Focuses on private proceedings following relationship dissolution, on both the financial and children sides. Her children practice covers all related issues, including leave to remove and prohibited steps orders. Sources praise her for her detailed and pragmatic approach.
Strengths: "Calm and unflappable, Elizabeth gets straight to the heart of the case and offers pragmatic and sensible advice." "A straight-talking advocate who focuses on the reality of the situation, she is excellent at reading the room and adapting her advocacy accordingly." "A fantastically strong, knowledgeable advocate who remains approachable and client-friendly."

Frank Feehan QC

Highly experienced family silk with demonstrable expertise in serious public law children matters involving such issues as complex medical evidence. He is also instructed in sexual abuse issues and has experience of handling high net worth divorce work.
Strengths: "An exceptional advocate with an aura of gravitas." "An approachable barrister who makes himself available." "Brilliant on finances and mesmerising on his feet."

Harry Oliver QC

Standout new silk in the field of divorce law who routinely handles significant financial remedy proceedings for extremely high-profile individuals. His work is mainly international and often involves complex issues relating to businesses and offshore trusts. Sources see him as having one of the most technical brains at the Family Bar and applaud him for demonstrating the utmost attention to detail. He is further noted for having a charismatic court manner.
Strengths: "Phenomenal with numbers and highly articulate." "Thorough, great in front of judges, and a tough negotiator." "He has particular knowledge in the fields of pensions and trusts."

James Roberts QC

Highly regarded family practitioner whose practice is divided between the very largest financial disputes and complex multi-jurisdictional child matters. His financial remedy practice sees him representing high net worth figures in enormous divorce proceedings with labyrinthine assets to navigate. He possesses considerable experience in matters concerning offshore trusts.
Strengths: "A calm and incisive advocate with excellent client skills, who has the capacity to absorb a huge amount of paper in a short time." "Offers detailed, sensible and nuanced advice." "His charming nature masks a razor-sharp mind."

James Turner QC

Universally acclaimed practitioner recognised for the strength of both his finance and children work. Handling complex matters at the highest level, he is noted for his expertise in child abduction. Sources also praise his encyclopedic knowledge of international children disputes and financial issues.
Strengths: "His breadth of legal knowledge concerning thorny legal issues is unparalleled." "A class act and a master of family law." "A fearsome, brilliant advocate."

Jennifer Perrins

An accomplished family law barrister specialising in a range of private children matters, both domestic and international. Her expertise includes international child abduction, enforcement and jurisdiction matters. She also handles money matters such as Schedule 1 applications and TOLATA.
Strengths: "A great cross-examiner who doesn't give up but also never pursues duff points. She just gets on with things, never resorting to histrionics."

Juliet Chapman

An impressive junior with experience of being led by the top silks in high net worth matters. She also conducts her own cases at a level beyond her call.
Strengths: "A thorough, polished, personable and articulate barrister. Her presentation of cases is very assured." "She grasps difficult issues very quickly and gives great advice."

Katherine Kelsey

Appears in complex divorce proceedings for individuals of significant wealth. She also acts in private children cases, in particular contact and international relocation cases. Kelsey has further experience in Schedule 1 claims.
Strengths: "Katherine is direct and decisive while remaining approachable to clients and solicitors. Her advice and strategy is always absolutely clear and on point." "Intelligent and charming with a confident presence in court, she gives clients sensible and pragmatic advice."

Katy Chokowry

Specialises in cross-border child abduction, leave to remove and relocation proceedings and has appeared in both the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. Sources praise her for her meticulous preparation and attentiveness.

Strengths: "Extremely thorough and experienced in child abduction work." "A gem to work with, she is thoughtful and clever." "Clients have absolute faith in her."

Kelan McHugh

A respected advocate in the family matrimonial sphere whom sources praise for his extensive knowledge of the law and his persuasive advocacy. He specialises in complex financial remedy matters which often include international elements and issues around assets.
Strengths: "Gets to grips with cases quickly, and is able to deal with difficult clients in a calm, measured and sensitive way." "He's a succinct writer who knows when to make the best points."

Markanza Cudby

Her broad practice includes all facets of family law, although she is predominantly a children practitioner who focuses on complex matters. She also sits as both a deputy district judge and a Recorder.
Strengths: "A fierce advocate who has so much gravitas." "Markanza is able to deal with complex matters and simplify them for the client in an accessible manner." "She is excellent on really thorny children cases."

Millie Benson

Rapidly rising junior with experience of  handling complex, high net worth cases. She also has a public and private children law practice.
Strengths: "Likeable, knowledgeable, and possessed of the perfect balance of graciousness and firmness." "More confident than her year of call would suggest, she holds her own against people more senior than her."

Nicholas Anderson

Has a mixed practice that covers a range of private family issues. His areas of focus include international child abduction, relocation cases and prenuptial agreement disputes.
Strengths: "An excellent, friendly and approachable junior who has a great legal mind and a very effective court manner." "Trusted by clients for his attention to detail, he is helpful and has a proactive approach in his dealings with instructing solicitors." "He is great for financial and complex children work alike, and delivers straightforward advice."
Recent work: Acted for a husband in resisting an application for leave to remove the parties’ children to Switzerland. The case was complicated by Anderson's client's drug abuse and limited assets.

Nicola Fox

Brings her experience as a psychologist to complex and acrimonious matrimonial and private children disputes. She has particular expertise in relocation cases and is also adept at issues involving mental health and education.
Strengths: "Down to earth, well respected and an extremely safe pair of hands." "A powerhouse of legal expertise known for her flawless preparation and quietly determined court presence." "A hardcore advocate who takes no prisoners."

Perican Tahir

An impressive junior who has a broad family law practice with an emphasis on complex finance issues affecting cohabiting couples. She is also experienced in handling matters with jurisdictional issues. Sources highlight her tenacious advocacy and her dedication to her clients.
Strengths: "A determined and effective advocate whose tenacity resonates with clients. Perican’s pragmatic, analytical and incisive approach achieves consistent success." "An excellent advocate and negotiator who is well prepared and user-friendly." "She gives open, honest, well thought out advice."

Peter Newman

Widely respected family junior specialising in matters involving complex corporate structures with significant assets. He has particular experience of navigating technical jurisdictional issues. Newman has appeared both led and unled in significant cases.
Strengths: "Extremely bright and able to distil huge amounts of complex financial information into a short, persuasive argument. He is humorous and pleasant to deal with in the worst situations." "Peter is a formidable opponent and his written work and skeleton arguments are extraordinarily good."

Philip Marshall QC

Highly regarded finance silk who handles high-value divorce litigation for an enviable clientele of wealthy individuals. He is commended for his conciliatory approach and his ability to settle hotly contested cases. He is instructed on matters which have important legal ramifications.
Strengths: "Erudite, effective, and absolutely loved by his clients, he is able to simplify the most difficult and complex areas of law for the client." "Philip is a calm, collected barrister with good, technical knowledge who exudes confidence and calm."

Richard Castle

A well-known financial barrister who is respected for his handling of matrimonial disputes involving trusts and complicated finances. He is noted for his work before the High Court, where he conducts high-value cases. Castle has experience in jurisdictional disputes and broader cross-border issues.
Strengths: "A silk in all but title, he is commercially astute and the master of his brief." "Thorough but proportionate in his approach and advice, he gets to the issues immediately and has excellent judgement." "He has excellent technical knowledge, and his advice is clear."

Richard Harrison QC

Versatile practitioner who is widely regarded for his expertise in both top-end matrimonial finance and complex children work. He is equally at home dealing with multibillion-pound divorces as international children arrangements. Harrison has particular experience in cases involving jurisdictional issues.
Strengths: "His ability to keep hold of the facts and apply the law to them is phenomenal. He has a huge brain which he uses to distil his arguments into bite-sized information that the judge is able to understand." "A man who really cares and fights for his clients, he is good both on paper and on his feet."

Stephen Jarmain

Practises across a wide spectrum of family issues, handling complex private children and ancillary relief proceedings. He has experience of representing high-profile individuals in international disputes, including those relating to child abduction, enforcement and relocation.
Strengths: "Strategic and willing to go the extra mile for the client, he provides a very rounded service." "His position statements are always detailed, and he is able to grasp complex issues quickly. His detailed knowledge means he is effective in cross-examination."
Recent work: Appeared in the Court of Appeal and the High Court representing a mother seeking to prevent the use of media coverage to pressure her into returning her abducted children to the UK.

Thomas Dance

Experienced junior with a growing reputation in the matrimonial finance market, who regularly handles high-value financial remedy and Schedule 1 proceedings. His cases frequently involve complicating elements, such as offshore accounts, corporate structures and assets.
Strengths: "A stickler for detail with a genuine passion for his subject." "His analysis of the law and ability to work as a team are excellent. He reassures clients that they will get a good and fair outcome." "An excellent advocate who impresses with his presentation and tenacity in court."