William Hillier

Call 2001 – Inner Temple

Legal 500 Leading Junior 2024

Recognised in the Legal 500

William is a family law barrister specialising in all matters concerning family finance including financial remedies on divorce and cohabitation disputes. He is also instructed in complex private law children cases.

Recognised by the Legal 500 as a leading Junior of the Western Circuit.

William is a bold and strong advocate. He is forthright and achieves good results. He is also good with clients and provides sound advice.

He is a member of the Family Law Bar Association

Family Finance

William is a senior member of the finance team and is widely instructed in complex financial disputes.

He has extensive experience in cases involving business assets including farming cases, companies, sole traders, inherited money, substantial pension funds, including military pensions, assets out of the jurisdiction, and third party interests including family trusts.

William also regularly represents parents seeking financial provision for their children pursuant to Schedule 1 Children Act 1989 and non-married couples or family members who are involved in property disputes pursuant to the Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act 1996.

  • Recent cases have included:
    • Representing H who during a lengthy marriage established and ran a successful multi-million pound business. The issues in the case included valuing the parties respective interests in the company. The amount of money that could be released from the company so as to enable one party to buy out the other’s interest and the tax implications of this. The settlement also included property transfer, offsetting of the value of the family home and offsetting their private pension arrangements. This case settled successfully at FDR
    • .Representing W who successfully preserved all of her inherited family estate in Ireland for the benefit of her children. This was a long marriage case in which W’s parents died during the course of the marriage.
    • Representing W in proceedings where H’s mother contributed to the purchase price of the matrimonial home and intervened in proceedings claiming a third party interest in the matrimonial home.
    • Representing W in proceedings where both parties were solicitors and H an equity partner in a successful firm. H’s financial interests were complex and included partnership funds, minority shareholdings in a number of limited companies, property held in trust and a significant pension fund. The case focused on an expert analysis of the availability and liquidity of resources to ensure that suitable provision was made for W and their two children.
    • Representing W in a case where H was the majority shareholder in successful business he established during the marriage. H had assets in his name in excess of £1million which he sort to substantially undervalue during the proceedings. The family home was also subject to a declaration of trust which H sought to reply upon to defeat W claims.
    • Representing H who retired after a lengthy career in the Police Force with a substantial pension fund. W was the sole director of her own company which she sought to establish was worthless due to the Covid-19 crisis and accordingly sought a substantial pension sharing order.
    • Representing the second wife in financial proceedings which ran simultaneously to a claim commenced by the first wife. H was a self employed builder and the Court had to consider expert evidence in relation to the value of his business as well as arguments over the priority of each wife’s financial claim.
    • Representing H in a short marriage case where both parties married when in their 60’s. The assets in the case exceeded £2 million  and included property outside of the jurisdiction, pension funds in payment and inheritance claims.
    • Representing H who was a farmer in a long marriage case. The farm business including the farm house, which served as the matrimonial home, was the main assets in this case
Family – Children
Property & Chancery

William is regularly instructed in cohabitee and family trust claims pursuant to the Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act 1996 (TOLATA). Recent cases have included:

  • A client seeking a life interest in a property following multiple house sales and purchases over a 25 year period in which his client was alleged to have acted fraudulently.
  • Defending a claim of undue influence whereby the other party was seeking to have the whole conveyance set aside.
  • Equitable accounting; where William represented a client in prison for arson following a fire at the family home.
  • Representing a property developer whose partner was seeking an interest in the family home based on a contribution to the mortgage payments following a lengthy relationship.
  • Representing one of the parties in a dispute as to their respective beneficial interests in their home following the breakdown of a long relationship. The family home was registered in the sole name of one of the parties and the other sought to quantify a beneficial interest based on financial contributions made during their relationship.
Professional Memberships

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