Emma Willing, Legal Director, Family

Emma Willing

Legal Director

Personal Profile

Emma is a Legal Director in the Family department and has advised clients for over 10 years on all aspects of family law.  Emma's expertise includes the resolution of complex financial issues in divorce (often involving international aspects), private children law matters (both Schedule 1 claims and Section 8 Orders), cohabitation disputes and the drafting of pre and post-marital agreements and cohabitation agreements. Emma has worked for a diverse range of clients including a number of high profile clients.  Emma is highly experienced, approachable and supportive and as such builds and maintains trusting relationships with clients.

Emma also has a particular interest and advises in respect to surrogacy and LGBT parenting issues and is a Trustee of Fertility Network, the UK's leading charity supporting those suffering with fertility issues.  Emma was recently involved in hosting an event for the Law Commission consultation on surrogacy reform.

Emma is a graduate of the University of Exeter and joined Mishcon de Reya LLP in 2009.

Emma was awarded Family Lawyer of the Year (Gold) at Citywealth Future Leaders Awards 2016.  The Legal 500 (2018) stated that Emma has the "case facts at her fingers and can immediately see the right solution."

Emma frequently contributes to legal journals and the legal press and her articles include:-

  • The Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984, Part III: the apotheosis of justice, English judicial imperialism or just the forum shopper's friend?  International Family Law, December 2014
  • Bridget Jones' Baby: The Legal Implications Lawyer 2B, November 2016
  • Single parents, Surrogacy arrangements and Parental Orders the current situation Family Law: November 2017
  • Informal conception arrangements – understanding the legal implications for parents, donors and children: Mishcon de Reya LLP, 2018
  • Surrogacy: Dispelling the myths and misconceptions: Mishcon de Reya LLP, 2019

Key Experience

  • N v F [2011] EWHC 586 Fam
  • Acting for a client in anticipation of and following the birth of their second child as a result of an overseas surrogacy agreement. We obtained a Parental Order on an expedited basis, having worked closely with our Immigration team who had secured a discretionary stay, enabling the child to enter and reside in England pending registration as a British national and issue of a British passport.

Career History

Legal Director, Mishcon de Reya LLP
Managing Associate, Mishcon de Reya LLP
Solicitor, Mishcon de Reya
Solicitor, Camilla Baldwin
Trainee, Penningtons LLP
College of Law, LPC
Exeter University, LLB (Hons) Law


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