Ella Calnan

Specialist in:

Ella frequently advises and acts in a wide range of private law children applications – from contact/residence disputes, including cases involving serious allegations of domestic violence, sexual abuse and parental alienation – to choice of schools and medical treatment, surrogacy and fertility.

Ella has a particular interest in international relocation and is experienced in cases involving the 1980 and 1996 Hague Conventions, Brussels II revised and non-Hague Convention countries. In the last year Ella has successfully represented clients in relocation applications concerning Australia, Austria and the West Bank, Israel.

Ella’s family finance work frequently involves complicating factors such as trusts, companies and partnerships, hidden assets, injunctive relief, bankruptcy and enforcement. Ella also has experience advising on pre and post-nuptial agreements and acting in disputes concerning the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975.

Ella has a growing international finance practice and has acted in cases concerning financial provision following divorce overseas, recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments, including reciprocal enforcement of foreign maintenance orders, jurisdictional disputes (‘forum shopping’) and cases concerning the validity of a foreign marriage.

Reported cases
25th August 2015 | Bailii

W v S (Committal) [2015] EWFC B130

Committal application arising in Schedule 1 proceedings arising from alleged failure of the Respondent to complete properly a Form E. Judge finds a wilful breach and sentences Respondent to 14 days’ imprisonment, suspended for a short period to allow one last opportunity to comply with the Order


What the directories say

“Ella is a focused and pragmatic advocate. She is able to build supportive relationships with clients whilst giving them clear advice, and is firm with both them and opponents where needed.”

“Ella gives practical, thoughtful advice and looks ahead to the future for the sake of her clients.”

“She is a skilled advocate who has an excellent ability to get straight to the heart of any issue.”
Chambers & Partners 2022

“Ella is a strategic thinker, who combines being a persuasive and polished courtroom performer with a wisdom and empathy which her clients value.”
The Legal 500 2022

“Always well prepared and very articulate in court, she fights well but is not one of those who comes across as overly aggressive.”
Chambers & Partners 2021

“Is a barrister of exceptional ability. She is an absolute powerhouse, combining an appetite for hard work with first-rate judgement and a flair for advocacy. She possesses a huge amount of emotional intelligence.”
The Legal 500 2021

“She’s incredibly well spoken in court even when faced with a tricky case and she shows real tenacity”
Chambers & Partners 2020

“Ella is an astute and very skilled advocate who is easy to work with and gives sensible, practical advice to clients”
Legal 500 2020

“Ella is a wonderfully personable advocate, and clients have been impressed with her refreshingly unstuffy approach, but she is also an incisive tactician and a steely advocate who I would always want to have on my team. She is definitely one to watch, and has a bright future ahead.” 
Chambers and Partners 2019

“She is a skilled advocate who is very good with clients. She quickly grasps the issues and sees the wider picture, including costs considerations. Ella is also always very approachable and responsive, meaning that from a solicitor’s perspective she is easy to work with and someone that you can just pick up the phone to discuss a case with.” 
Chambers and Partners 2018

“She’s phenomenally bright and empathetic, down-to-earth and sensible. She’s definitely one to watch for the future.”
Chambers and Partners 2017


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Professional Memberships

Family Law Bar Association