Esther Lieu

Year of Call: 2011
Email Address: esther.lieu@3pb.co.uk
Secure Email: esther.lieu@3paper.cjsm.net
Telephone: 0117 928 1520

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Overview

Esther Lieu is a specialist family lawyer who accepts instructions in all areas of family law and appears regularly in the Single Family Court and High Court across the country and particularly in the South West.

In public law proceedings she represents local authorities, parents, guardians and the official solicitor (including at appeal) and has valuable experience in the London and Gloucester Family Drug and Alcohol Courts representing clients addicted to prescription medication, illegal substances and with complex mental health problems.

Esther is building a busy financial relief practice including all MCA 1973, TLATA and Schedule 1 applications. Furthermore she has recently appeared in the High Court seeking injunctive relief under Part Ill MFPA 1984.

Esther represents parties in all private law matters under the CA 1989 and FLA 1996 and is a particularly sensitive advocate where issues of domestic violence, gender-based violence and mental health are concerned.

She has appeared in the High Court on cases engaging the Brussels II Convention (succeeding in an argument as to jurisdiction, and separately applying to vary a foreign order).

Esther is a strong, rigorous and committed advocate who always ensures that the client is comfortable and confident in her representation. She is meticulous in her case preparation and in responding to the requests of her professional clients.

She also accepts instructions on a direct access basis.

Expertise

  • Family
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    Esther practices exclusively in family law. She has a strong public law practice, and regularly represents the Local Authority, parents, Guardians and the Official Solicitor at all stages of proceedings including appeals. She has recently represented a vulnerable mother with severe learning difficulties in a complex 9-day hearing in the High Court that involved the Latvian Central Authorities, domestic violence, Latvian and Urdu interpreters and the non-consensual adoption of a foreign national child.

    Esther also has valuable experience in the London and Gloucester Family Drug and Alcohol Courts representing clients addicted to prescription medication, illegal substances and with complex mental health problems.

    Esther has a busy practice in financial remedies, including proceedings under TLATA and Schedule 1. She is a forceful negotiator at an FDR and balances the costs of further litigation in achieving the best outcome for her client. She has recently represented a client from start to finish in a complex case MFPA 1984 cases in the High Court following an overseas divorce involving applications for injunctive relief, nondisclosure, overseas assets, and a fact-find as to beneficial interests of the third party intervener.

    Esther is regularly instructed in private law proceedings including injunctions, enforcement applications, fact-finding hearings and contested final hearings and has represented parties seeking Special Guardianship Orders and post-adoption contact. She has a particular interest in cases with an international dimension and has appeared in the High Court on several cases in matters engaging the Brussels II Convention (disputes as to jurisdiction and variation of foreign orders). She is currently in the High Court representing a father in a case of parental  alienation.

    Esther is a strong and committed advocate who always ensures that the client is comfortable and confident in her representation. She is rigorous in her case preparation, and swift to respond to those who instruct her.

    Esther regularly provides training and leads seminars on topics including applications brought under ToLATA and Schedule 1, evidence in public law cases, public and private law case updates and child maintenance.

    Case Summaries

    Esther is a frequent contributor to Family Law Week. Her recent case summaries include:

    Articles

    The separate representation of children in child abduction proceedings (FLW, January 2015)

    http://www.familylawweek.co.uk/site.aspx?i=ed142203

    Family Drug and Alcohol Court: A Practitioners’ and Judge’s Perspective (FLW, October 2014)

    http://www.familylawweek.co.uk/site.aspx?i=ed136182

    The Termination of Parental Responsibility (FLW, March 2014)

    http://www.familylawweek.co.uk/site.aspx?i=ed127998

    Facilitating the Return of Abducted Children: the ECtHR Judgment in Raw v France (FLW, March 2013)

    http://www.familylawweek.co.uk/site.aspx?i=ed112500

    The Detention of Children - the ECtHR Judgment in Popov v France (Journal of Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Law, Vol 26, No 4, 2012, pp 349 - 358)

    Previous Experience 

    Prior to practicing at the Bar, Esther at the AIRE Centre where she provided free legal advice and representation, ran training sessions on the rights of victims of human trafficking and drafted submissions to the ECtHR and CJEU.

    Previously Esther trained as a child protection officer with Save the Children where she worked with children, families, professionals and government officials in complex situations of abuse, violence and neglect in Liberia and India.

    Family Law (Public Law) 

    Esther practices exclusively in family law. She has a strong public law practice representing Local Authorities, parents, Guardians and the Official Solicitor at all stages of proceedings including appeals. She has valuable experience in the London and Gloucester Family Drug and Alcohol Courts representing clients addicted to prescription medication, illegal substances and with complex mental health problems.

    Family Law (Private Law) 

    Esther is regularly instructed in private law proceedings including injunctions, enforcement applications, fact-finding hearings and contested final hearings and has represented parties seeking Special Guardianship Orders and post-adoption contact. She has a particular interest in cases with an international dimension and has appeared in the High Court on several cases in matters engaging the Brussels II Convention (disputes as to jurisdiction and variation of foreign orders).

    Family Law (Ancillary Relief and ToLATA, Sch1) 

    Esther has a busy practice in financial remedies (from pre-nuptial and separation agreements through to contested final hearings), including proceedings under TLATA and Schedule 1. She is a forceful negotiator at an FDR and balances the costs of further of litigation against the overarching aim of achieving the best outcome for her client. She has recently represented a client from start to finish in a complex case that commenced in the RCJ under MFPA 1984 following an overseas divorce involving applications for injunctive relief, non-disclosure and overseas assets.

Academic qualifications

  • College of Law, BPTC (Merit) 2012
  • Inner Temple Exhibition Scholar 2011
  • College of Law, GDL (Commendation) 2011
  • University of London, MA - Human Rights (Merit) 2006
  • University of Bristol, BSc – Philosophy and Psychology (2:1) 2005

Professional bodies

  • Family Law Bar Association (Treasurer, Western Circuit)
  • Human Rights Lawyers Association
  • Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association (previously a Trustee)

Direct Access

Esther Lieu is qualified to accept instructions directly from members of the public and professional clients under the Direct Public Access scheme.

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