Unit Chambers is the only chambers in the North West specialising exclusively in family law. Our barristers are experts in their field, provide a bespoke service to our clients and are focussed on delivering the best result possible.

Teertha Gupta

Teertha Gupta Q.C.

Door Tenant

Bio

Teertha is a specialist senior barrister and trial advocate with over 30 years of experience.

He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2012 and a (Family) Deputy High Court Judge in 2016. Teertha also sits as a part time Circuit Judge (a Recorder) in the Criminal and Civil courts.

His areas of expertise include complex domestic and international children cases such as relocation, cross-border parental abductions and acrimonious contact disputes.

Teertha is also the go to person for forced marriage and stranded spouse cases. He has spoken in the House of Commons and was named by Lord Lester in the House of Lords as one of the four senior pro bono lawyers behind the Forced Marriage Civil Protection Bill which became a statute in 2007.

Hotly contested proceedings for clients who are running unpopular arguments before the courts are his forte. He has developed the ability to present any case in its best possible light and has been known to have changed Judges’ minds in the most difficult of cases. He examines cases in detail and leaves no stone unturned.

Teertha’s practice is widely spread geographically across England and Northern Ireland (and the Eastern Caribbean) in all levels of court from County court to the ECJ. To date, he has been involved in 10 full appeals in the UKSC/House of Lords.

Lisa Edmunds Unit Chambers

Lisa Edmunds

CEO & Senior Consultant Barrister

Bio

As Chief Executive, Lisa is responsible for delivering Unit Chambers’ bold vision.

With nearly 20 years experience and expertise in high level and complex cases, Lisa is one of the leading family law barristers in the country. Her mission is simple; to get the best possible result in the courtroom. Her expertise lies both in arguing a case and in cross examining witnesses at trial. In addition, she is often asked to prepare complex legal documents and advise on difficult and sensitive issues.

Lisa travels around the country appearing at all levels of the Family Court. She undertakes work in all aspects of relationship breakdowns but specialises in cases relating to children, including:

• Fact find hearings (allegations of physical / sexual / emotional abuse of children)
• Care proceedings
• Child arrangements Orders; i.e. who children should live with and spend time with
• International and internal relocation of children
• Child Abduction / Hague Convention
• Arbitration

With nearly 20 years of operating at the highest level where she has seen and heard it all. She has learnt that the real issues aren’t usually about the paperwork and the process. They tend to be about people, relationships and doing the right thing. That’s why she will always make it a priority to focus and drill down on the points that are going to matter to get the best possible result for her clients.

clare porter phillips Unit Chambers

Clare Porter-Phillips

Senior Consultant Barrister

Bio

Since commencing practice in 2001, Clare has established herself as one of the leading family law barristers on the Northern Circuit. Clare is widely known as a barrister who brings huge expertise and experience across both public and private law and has represented local authorities, parents, children and interveners in public and private law. She is well known for her passion, drive and determination to achieve the best outcome for her clients and is highly regarded for her effective and efficient case management. Clare is highly respected for her robust approach and is very mindful of the need to manage expectations in very emotive and difficult situations with sensitivity and care.

In addition, Clare is a trained mediator allowing her to undertake mediation in all types of family proceedings. She fully believes in the value of the mediation process within family litigation and believes that both parties, in such cases, can greatly benefit from the process as an effective way of agreeing a solution to a dispute, rather than having a solution imposed upon them.

Kerri O'neill Unit Chambers

Kerri O’Neill

Senior Consultant Barrister

Bio

Since qualification Kerri worked in-house in the legal departments of seven local authorities, providing case management, advice and advocacy for their Children’s Services. Kerri has a dynamic and in depth knowledge of the working of Local Authority Children Services, including their rights, duties and responsibilities. Most recently, Kerri has been a member of 7 Harrington Street Chambers.

Kerri is confident in conducting Children Act 1989 and Adoption and Children Act 2002 proceedings on behalf of Local Authorities, ranging from EPO/ ICO applications, interim hearing, fact finding hearings and final hearing for care orders, supervision orders, secure accommodation orders, placement orders and leave to oppose adoption orders. Kerri accepts instruction on behalf of local authorities, parents, guardians and intervenors in public law proceedings. Kerri also regularly conducts High Court proceedings concerning children.

Kerri also practices in Human Rights claims brought against Local Authority Children’s Services for breaches of children’s article 6 and 8 rights.

Kerri’s practice also covers Private Family applications for residence, contact, SGO’s, and private adoptions, and, parental alienation. Kerri is regularly instructed to cover CMH, FDRH, DRH, Fact Finding Hearing, Final Hearings and interim applications.

Kerri has a particular interest in Media and Reporting injunctions relating to children in proceedings and Looked After Children, particularly injunctions against social media campaigns against Local Authorities.

Kerri is authorised to accept instructions on a Direct Access basis in private law proceedings concerning children.

Jenna Lucas Unit Chambers

Jenna Lucas

Senior Consultant Barrister

Bio

Prior to joining Unit Chambers, Jenna was a Partner at national law firm Irwin Mitchell LLP in London where she was already an established and accomplished family lawyer.

Jenna has extensive experience of complicated family matters and a varied practice dealing with financial remedy and private law children cases, often involving international elements. She leads a new team at Unit Chambers supporting financial and private law work with a particular focus on international matters, broadening our offering in this area.

Jenna specialises in complex cases and a considerable amount of her work in recent years has been before the Family Division of the High Court. She has been involved in a number of reported and high profiles cases, including the widely reported Re H-N case in relation to allegations of domestic abuse recently before the Court of Appeal, and Sharland and Gohil, heard by the Supreme Court in 2015.

Whilst at Irwin Mitchell, Jenna worked closely with, and under, the leadership of National Head of Family Law, Rosalyn Bever and has been recognised in the Legal 500 in the last four years; her team were ranked in both the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners.

jess purchase unit chambers

Jess Purchase

Consultant Barrister

Bio

Jess completed pupillage in a specialist family law team in London and practiced there for two years before joining Unit Chambers. Jess is a children law specialist and has broad experience in public and private children cases and matters with an international element.

Prior to her career at the Bar, Jess was an Amicus intern at the Oklahoma County Public Defender’s office assisting counsel in preparation for, and throughout the capital trial of State of Oklahoma v Dustin Davison. Before converting to law, Jess worked in mental health as a community support worker and as a volunteer supervisor for the National Self-Harm Network.

Jess has a reputation as a fearless and dynamic advocate. She prides herself on her ability to put clients at ease, manage their expectations whilst ensuring that they feel properly heard, and guide them through the court process.

Kristine Lidgerwood Consultant Barrister

Kristine Lidgerwood

Consultant Barrister

Bio

Kristine graduated from Liverpool University with a BSc honours degree in Zoology and also completed an MBA from the University of Chester. She has been a member of the Law Society‘s Children Panel since 2002 and finds that her scientific background has been a real asset in cases involving complicated medical evidence. Kristine undertakes work in all aspects of relationship and family breakdown but specialises in cases relating to children.

She brings 30 years worth of experience and specialism in family law and in particular public law work and is known for her attention to detail and tenacity alongside providing clients in courtroom environments with calm reassurance.

In her career as a solicitor, Kristine has filled roles as head of department of her specialist area and latterly has accumulated almost 10 years of experience offering services as a court agent advocate.

Lyana Chan Unit Chambers

Lyana Chan

Consultant Barrister

Bio

As one of the most likeable solicitors in the North West, Lyana Chan is a key addition to the Unit Chambers team and brings a wide range of experience and expertise in all aspects of family law. Lyana has recently completed a reduced six month pupillage with us. In addition, Lyana has spent a considerable amount of her practice working on civil litigation as well as adult and mental health.

Lyana graduated with an LLB from Staffordshire University in 1998 and was admitted as a solicitor in 2006 after working as a paralegal and trainee solicitor in North Wales. She passed her Bar Transfer Test in 2016 and was called to the Bar earlier this year as a member of Gray’s Inn. She has an in-depth and dynamic knowledge of the workings of local authority children’s services having worked as part of the child protection and adult social services team of Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council for the past 14 years.

Outside of work Lyana loves spending time with her family, especially her two young children, as well as horse riding, keeping fit and baking.