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John Lea, Duncan Lewis

John Lea


Contact Information

Profile / Experience

I joined Duncan Lewis in March 2017 as a consultant solicitor, based in Nottingham.

I represent children and parents in care proceedings and other public law children cases, as well as children who are joined as parties to private law proceedings. I have extensive experience in this field and I am quite well known as a Nottingham 'care bear'. I conduct my own advocacy wherever feasible and consistent with the client's best interests.


  • City of London Polytechnic (now City University), Law Society Qualifying Exam Part 2, as it then was
  • City of London Polytechnic (now City University), Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Law (Class 2(2))


  • March 2017 - joined Duncan Lewis as consultant solicitor;
  • 1997 - 2016 - Bhatia Best Solicitors, Nottingham, assistant solicitor then salaried partner. Head of family department 1996 to 2013, then consultant solicitor until December 2016;
  • 1990 - 1997 - Warren & Allen solicitors, Nottingham. Assistant solicitor then salaried partner;
  • 1986 - 1990 - Lea Warner solicitors, Nottingham. Founding partner in new firm which continues as Maclaren Warner;
  • 1981 - 1986 - Austin & Carnley solicitors, Dunstable. Assistant solicitor then equity partner;
  • 1977 - 1981 - Neve, Son & Co solicitors, Luton. Articled clerk then assistant solicitor;
  • 1 November 1979 - admitted as a solicitor.

Notable Cases

Court of Appeal

Re A 1997 - Solicitor with conduct of successful appeal to Court of Appeal for mother who was refused leave to apply for contact while a section 91(14) restriction was in force. Thorpe LJ set out the test to be applied in such cases, namely an arguable case.

High Court

2016 unreported - Advocate and solicitor with conduct of inherent jurisdiction proceedings before Keehan J for child of a man who was on remand (and later sentenced to 8 years) for preparing an act of terrorism.

2016 unreported - Advocate and solicitor with conduct of care proceedings for Polish woman resident in Germany who sought SGO for her granddaughter with severe cerebral palsy after a non accidental shaking injury. Successfully avoided wardship proceedings proposed by local authority and achieved transition to Germany using the provisions of Brussels II Revised.

2016 unreported - Advocate and solicitor with conduct of inherent jurisdiction proceedings before Keehan J for two children who were visiting Pakistan with their parents when both parents were murdered, apparently by mother's family in 'honour based violence'.

Membership & Accreditations

  • Member of Law Society Children Panel
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