Constance McDonnell QC


Year of Call: 2000 Year of Silk: 2019

“A master of her field”

Chambers & Partners HNW Guide

Practice Overview

Constance has a traditional Chancery practice specialising in contentious probate, trust disputes, 1975 Act claims, administration of estates, and removal of personal representatives. She has appeared recently in several highly publicised High Court cases, including Schrader v Schrader (a successful probate claim based on undue influence), Re Smith (concerning capacity to make a lifetime gift), Gestrust v 16 Defendants (a trust dispute), Gupta v Gupta (a probate dispute about knowledge and approval), and Lucas v Gatward (a constructive trust/estoppel claim). In 2016-17 she was Junior Counsel for the Respondent in the landmark 1975 Act case of Ilott v The Blue Cross [previously Ilott v Mitson] in the Supreme Court. Constance is acting for the respondent in the important case of Re H, in which the Court of Appeal will consider in June 2021 whether a CFA success fee can be recoverable as part of an award under the 1975 Act.

Her practice also includes constructive trusts and proprietary estoppel, Court of Protection (property and affairs), and professional negligence.

Prior to taking Silk in 2019, Constance won the Chancery Junior of the Year award at the 2018 Chambers Bar Awards, and was recommended as a Star Individual in Chambers UK Bar Guide 2019 and High Net Worth Guide 2018.

News & Events

  • News

    #SerleShare - “Open for business: conducting trials and assessing witness evidence remotely”

    #SerleShare – It is inevitable that for the next few months trials will continue to be conducted remotely, whilst we... Read More

    News

    Chambers UK Bar 2021 Rankings - “They are excellent without exception”

    Serle Court is delighted to announce that chambers has been ranked in 11 practice areas in this year's Chambers UK... Read More

  • Events

    WhitePaper Wills and Probate: Shaping New Law into Solution-Focused Answers for Your Clients

    Location: Online Read More

    Events

    Simon Gore’s Contentious Probate Review “I know what you missed this summer!”

    Location: Online Read More

  • “She’s very decisive and has a great manner with the clients,”

    “She is absolutely the best junior I have ever seen, hands down. She absolutely delivered on my own and my client’s expectations. She was extraordinarily good.”

    Chambers & Partners HNW Guide
  • “One of the most intelligent barristers at the Chancery Bar and identifies key points of law and factual issues which would be missed by other counsel.”

    The Legal 500
  • “She’s friendly, approachable, concise, articulate and commercial. She’s sensitive to the wider issues while cutting through the situation and being practical about the possible outcomes.” “She’s second to none in legal understanding.”

    Chambers & Partners

Education & Qualifications

MA in Classics, Oriel College, Oxford

Memberships

ACTAPS (Committee member)
STEP
Chancery Bar Association

VAT Number

787919845

In the Press

'MoJ changes to Will executions' BBC Radio London, 21 July 2020

'Derivative claims by beneficiaries and the interplay with Beddoe applications by personal representatives', The New Law Journal, 26 June 2020

'Wills at a Distance', STEP Journal, 19 June 2020

'DIY Danger in COVID's costly battle of wills', Daily Express, 17 June 2020

'Remote mediation: Is it the future?' Litigation Futures, 29 April 2020

'Constance McDonnell QC examines the year’s most notable 1975 Act decisions', The New Law Journal, 25 October 2019

'New rules to stop 'predators' from tricking vulnerable into marriage delayed by Brexit', The Daily Telegraph, 22 April 2019

Awards

Legal 500 Awards

Nominated - Private Client: Trusts and Probate Junior of the Year

Chambers UK Bar Awards

Chancery Junior of the Year

News & Events

  • News

    #SerleShare - “Open for business: conducting trials and assessing witness evidence remotely”

    #SerleShare – It is inevitable that for the next few months trials will continue to be conducted remotely, whilst we... Read More

    News

    Chambers UK Bar 2021 Rankings - “They are excellent without exception”

    Serle Court is delighted to announce that chambers has been ranked in 11 practice areas in this year's Chambers UK... Read More

  • Events

    WhitePaper Wills and Probate: Shaping New Law into Solution-Focused Answers for Your Clients

    Location: Online Read More

    Events

    Simon Gore’s Contentious Probate Review “I know what you missed this summer!”

    Location: Online Read More