Matthew Brunsdon Tully

Matthew Brunsdon Tully

Call 2007 (Lincoln’s Inn)
Qualifications BA (London School of Economics), LLM (University College London), BVC (ICSL)
Scholarships Lord Denning Scholarship (Lincoln’s Inn), Hubert Greenland Award (Lincoln’s Inn), Pegasus Scholarship (to New Zealand Supreme Court and Family Court), Winner: ICSL Mooting Competition, Finalist: Inter-Provider Mooting Competition and Gluckstein Prize for Advocacy


Private law children work

Matthew has appeared in some interesting private law children matters, for example:

  • Re: W – acted pro bono for the mother seeking leave to remove her two children to Romania. She had been refused leave after a contested final hearing only 18 months prior. HHJ Cox granted leave after a 7-8 day trial, at which the children were represented by a Guardian. Father sought permission to appeal to the Court of Appeal from Munby LJ as he then was. Munby LJ refused permission after an inter partes hearing.
  • Re: S – acted for a father throughout FLA 1996 and private law proceedings involving allegations of sexual abuse, during which the children were represented by a Guardian.

Child abduction

Matthew has acted in several child abduction matters in the High Court in London:

  • Re K – represented a mother who disputed she had abducted her child to Malaysia. Sought a dismissal, in default a stay, of the proceedings in favour of Malaysia. Father conceded a dismissal of the English proceedings at court.
  • Re M – represented a mother before Cobb J who argued that the father had acquiesced to her return to the UK with the child. Father subsequently conceded the point.
  • Re M – represented a mother who had clearly abducted her three young children to the UK from Latvia. Although some time was brought to enable her to adjust to her return to Latvia, a return order was subsequently agreed, on terms.

Matthew has been directly involved in the following reported matrimonial finance cases:

  • Young v Young – well publicised, husband found at trial to be worth £40m. Drafted the questionnaire, obtained a passport order from Charles J early on in the litigation, and drafted the pleadings which led to Mr Young’s suspended sentence, before the case was taken on by a QC and subsequently reported at [2012] 2 FLR 470.
  • El-Gamal v Maktoum – well publicised, for wife of Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum. Appeared at an early stage before the case was taken on by a QC and reported as [2011] EWHC B27 (Fam).
  • Gourisaria v Gourisaria – for husband arguing that monies in India were part of a HUF fund. Appeared at an early stage successfully seeking the adjournment of the final hearing in favour of the Indian proceedings, and further disclosure, before the matter was taken on by a QC and reported as [2010] EWCA Civ 1019.
  • A v L – advised Mr A to appeal and drafted his skeleton argument although Matthew was unavailable for the appeal, which was later successful. Moor J refers to the skeleton argument at [2012] 1 FLR 985.
  • Traversa v Freddi (Part III MPFA relief after overseas (Italian) divorce. Led by Justin Warshaw at the hearing before Bodey J, reported at [2010] 1 FLR 324. He was away in New Zealand on a Pegasus Scholarship for the Husband’s appeal to the Court of Appeal – reported at [2011] 2 FLR 272 – but drafted a skeleton argument for the Court of Appeal in relation to jurisdiction.
  • GS v L – appeared before Macur J seeking letters of request and disclosure on behalf of the wife, who was represented by a QC at the final hearing, reported at [2013] 1 FLR 300.

As a pupil Matthew was involved in other interesting cases such as: MacLeod (Privy Council), B v R (Hogg J), Myerson (Court of Appeal), Radmacher v Granatino (Supreme Court), Agbaje (Supreme Court), Bokor-Ingram (Court of Appeal), and a number of others.


Matthew acted for a number of unmarried cohabitants seeking or resisting declarations and orders for sale in relation to property. The three most recent are:

  • C v H – representing Ms H, who is arguing for a constructive trust in respect of the family home owned by her ex-partner in his sole name, after a long (20 year) relationship.
  • B v B – instructed in conjoined financial remedy and ToLATA proceedings at a 5-day final hearing.
  • B v L – represented the claimant seeking a constructive trust/proprietary estoppel in relation to a property solely owned by his ex-partner, who subsequently accused him of GBH. The ex-partner was pleading illegality, duress/undue influence and lack of detriment. The claim succeeded before HHJ Hayward after a 3-day trial in Brighton. The ex-partner obtained permission to appeal. John Wilson QC led Matthew at the appeal, which Birss J dismissed.

Inheritance Act

Matthew has experience of Inheritance Act work and is looking to develop his practice in this area. He has advised in several Inheritance Act matters and has given informal opinions to specialist chancery counsel on the application of the deemed divorce test. He also advises on domicile.

Practice Overview

Matthew is an associate member. He was called to the Bar in 2007. Whilst he has particular experience of, and interest in, financial claims consequent upon family breakdown, including ‘financial remedies’ upon divorce, jurisdiction, Schedule 1 and TOLATA disputes over property between cohabitants, Matthew’s work extends to Children Act (and abduction) and Inheritance Act matters.

Despite being relatively junior, Matthew frequently acts against, and led by, senior practitioners, including Queen’s Counsel.

Interesting cases include:

Arbili v Arbili [2015] EWCA Civ 542 (Court of Appeal led by Bruce Blair QC, having represented the wife solo at first instance. The case concerned alleged non-disclosure and cross applications to set aside / strike out based on information obtained unlawfully)

CS v ACS & Anor [2015] EWHC 1005 (Fam) [2015] All ER (D) 137 (Apr) [2015] WLR (D) 171 (Munby P on appeals against consent orders, and whether part of a Practice Direction was ultra vires)

Mann v Mann [2014] EWCA Civ 1674 [2014] All ER (D) 237 (Dec) (Court of Appeal led by Stephen Trowell QC, on jurisdiction and interim maintenance post-capitalisation pending enforcement)

Lofthouse v Box [2014] EWHC 1795 (Ch) (Birss J led by John Wilson QC, having represented the Claimant solo at first instance in the Chancery Division in a TOLATA dispute involving allegations of stamp duty illegality)

A v L [2011] EWHC 3150 (Fam) [2012] 1 FLR 985 (Moor J, on the interaction between capital and income in a smaller money case)

Traversa v Freddi (Part III Application Following Italian Divorce) [2009] EWHC 2101 (Fam) [2010] 1 FLR 324 (Bodey J led by Justin Warshaw QC, on Part III relief after divorce in an EU state)


Matthew has taught the whole spectrum of family law at the LSE and King’s College London, where he remains an examiner.

He is on the team of authors compiling the upcoming 19th edition of the leading family law text: Rayden and Jackson on Divorce and Family Matters.

Matthew lives in Bath and in London.