Marisa Allman

Year of call 1998


Practice Summary

Marisa has practised exclusively in family law since 1998. She joined Zenith chambers in 2010 following 10 years at the bar in Leeds in order to specialise in financial and private law children matters.

Marisa deals confidently and regularly with financial remedies cases, particularly involving complex business structures and family trusts, and is known for her clear advice and creative, pro-active approach to negotiating settlement. Alongside being a tenacious advocate, Marisa was one of the first barristers outside London to train as a Collaborative Lawyer, and has now trained as a Mediator with the Family Mediators Association. She is sought after to mediate high net worth divorce cases.

She advises regularly in cases involving child abduction, being only a handful of barristers on circuit with expertise in this area. Marisa’s international expertise makes her a popular choice with solicitors for both financial and children matters involving foreign jurisdictions. She has in-depth working knowledge of the Brussels regulations, and cross-jurisdiction recognition and enforcement.

In addition to her experience in foreign jurisdiction matters, Marisa has developed a niche practice in fertility law and is co-author of “Children and Same Sex Families: A Legal Handbook” aimed at family lawyers, professionals and people in same sex relationships (published by Jordan Publishing in March 2012). She continues to train solicitors around the country in this area, as well as acting in a number of high profile cases.

Marisa is available to provide training and seminars in all areas of her practice. She regularly accepts instructions directly from members of the public as well as via solicitor referrals, and is happy to receive direct enquiries via her email address from people seeking advice, representation or guidance as to the most appropriate form of dispute resolution.

Areas of Expertise

·         Financial remedies on divorce or dissolution.

·         Non-matrimonial finance including financial provision for children

·         Private law children matters; contact, residence, specific issues.

·         Cases involving foreign jurisdictions within and outside the European Union.

·         Cases involving issues of legal status, jurisdiction and recognition.

·         Cases involving families in same-sex relationships.

·         Fertility law.

Reported Cases

MG, JG v JF and JFG [2015] Fam Law 514
Successful application for litigation funding of private law case

 X v Y & St Bartholemew’s Hospital CRM & CAFCASS Legal [2015] EWFC 13.
Advocate to the court in fertility law case

Re E & F (Assisted Reproduction: Parent) [2013] EWHC 1418
Successful application for a declaration that second female was not a parent.

Zuk v Zuk [2012] EWCA Civ 1871
Successful appeal of committal to prison for non payment of lump sum

In the matter of B (a child) [2012] EWCA Civ 858
Successful appeal against a transfer of residence to a grandmother.

 Re S (a child) [2012] EWCA Civ 617 Re CAFCASS
Officers who had opposing views on the suitability of supervised contact.

  SH v MM and RM [2011] EWHC 3314
Concerning whether a removal from the jurisdiction had been unlawful where legal parentage is in issue.

 Re H (Contact: adverse findings of fact) [2011] EWCA Civ 585

  T v B [2010] EWHC 1444:
Case determining that a natural parent who is not a legal parent in a same sex relationship is not liable to make financial provision under Sch. 1 of the Children Act.

  Re H (a child) [2002] EWCA Civ 190:
Clarified the law regarding changing the forename of a child.


Recent Articles

Westlaw Insight: Conflict of Laws; Marriage, Divorce, Children

Vince v Wyatt; The value of a clean break order

Lost in translation? Converting statutory criteria into clinic practice;

‘Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013 - Top Ten guide to the new act’  


Recent Seminars

·         Family planning for modern families; a practitioner’s guide

·         Parental responsibility and registration of birth, assisted conception cases

·         The Child Arrangements Programme

·         Enforcement of financial orders

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"She has a calm exterior that puts clients at ease."

Chambers & Partners (2016)

"Clients respond brilliantly to her because of her firm, but kind and fair-minded, approach."

Legal 500 (2015)