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Luke Barnes

Call 1996


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Luke is ranked by The Legal 500 UK 2021 as a Leading Junior in the field of Private client: trusts and probate. He is described “as always enthusiastic and approachable [able to] turn a difficult case around and will dedicate himself to putting the best possible arguments forward for the client”.

Luke's practice encompasses competing property interests, the subtle and often complex issues surrounding trusts of land, proprietary estoppel, capacity and undue influence, as well as financial provision for spouses, cohabitants, dependants and children – often in the shadow of separation, divorce, bankruptcy or death. Very experienced in civil and family litigation and equally at home providing persuasive advocacy or carefully reasoned advice, he frequently gives seminars and contributes articles to legal publications.

Luke is qualified to accept instructions under the Bar Council Public Access scheme.

Luke offers private TOLATA FDRs in family property disputes, both before and after the issue of proceedings. His service includes private Interveners’ FDRs in the context of family financial remedy proceedings and private (Children Act 1989) Schedule 1 FDRs.


Reported Cases

Springall v Paice E10CL911 Widely reported in the regional and national press in 2019

Complex cohabitants’ property dispute involving the family home and three development properties. Total value over £3m.

Griffiths v Cork [2009] WTLR 955 (Ch)

Capacity to execute disposition of beneficial interest – burden of proof where disponor suffering from mental illness

Babar v Anis [2005] 3 FCR 216 (Ch)

Promissory estoppel as a defence to possession proceedings brought by former 'husband' against former 'wife' following decree of nullity (case cited in Snell's Equity 32nd Ed at 12-015)



“TOLATA update: inference, detriment and illegality” (Article in Family Law magazine April 2021)

Undue Influence in the Family - 01/02/2014

Shouldn't this Joint Tenancy be Severed?' - 2011

'Defining Detriment' -2009

'Context is Everything' - 2009'

"Stack .v. Dowden - the principles in practice" - 2007 (referred to in Williamson .v. Sheikh [2008] EWCA 990


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M.A. Classics (New College, Oxford)

M.A. Law (City University)



Property Bar Association,

Family Law Bar Association,

Franco-British Lawyers' Society,

Lawyers for Liberty


Areas of Practice

Real property and trusts of land

Co-ownership, cohabitants' and family property disputes

Resulting and constructive trusts, proprietary estoppel

Undue influence, capacity

Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act 1996

Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975

Mental Capacity Act 2005 and Court of Protection

Financial remedies on divorce, especially involving interveners

Financial provision for children


Outside Interests

Family life, skiing, riverside walks / cycle rides, travel in France


Fluent French

Some Arabic


"The barristers are friendly, thorough and personable and are always willing to help. The clerk's and admin staff are excellent and always go over and beyond to assist."


"The cohesive clerking team in Chambers have a combined depth of experience which is second to none."


"Impressive skills to handle intractable and challenging divorce and financial remedy cases."


"Chambers has a dedicated and professional clerking team. They are able to deal with any enquiry and are most helpful and reassuring" 


"They have a wide range of top quality senior and junior barristers who deal with high net worth financial work and can handle any type of children work." 


"James Doble has an innate ability to assist in choosing the right barrister for the right case. He leads his team meticulously."