Adrian Au

Associate

 

Adrian is an Associate in the Family Practice having joined the firm in 2017. Adrian advises clients on all areas of family and matrimonial law, including pre / post-nuptial agreements, matrimonial breakdown, separation and divorce, financial applications and arrangements for children. Adrian also regularly advises on contentious probate matters.

Adrian regularly advises a diverse range of clients, ranging from chairmen of listed companies, second-generation owners of family businesses and SME entrepreneurs with international backgrounds, to high net-worth individuals in the PRC. Adrian often advises clients on challenging jurisdictional issues, complex financial arrangements involving pension schemes, share options or deferred bonus payments schemes, assets situated across multiple jurisdictions and entitlements under a trust structure, as well as spousal and children maintenance (interim and final). Adrian also advises clients on children’s matters including international relocation, custodial and parental arrangements. Adrian also advises PRC clients who have substantial assets in Hong Kong and/or in the PRC personally or through their spouse, often involving jurisdictional or financial disclosure issues.

Additionally, Adrian also practises in contentious probate matters. Adrian advises on all aspects of contentious probate, including challenging the validity of Wills on the basis of the testator’s lack of mental capacity, fraudulent signatures and challenging and setting aside letters of administrations. Adrian also advises on matters involving administration of the estate, including applications for appointment of administrator pendente lite, grants of ad colligenda bona and accounts proceedings.

A significant number of Adrian’s matters involve complex law points, such as remedies against the opposing party acting in contempt of Court, remedies against opposing party who has obtained client’s confidential information without his consent, challenging the validity of a consensual financial agreement, seeking or defending against the inclusion of trust assets as part of the matrimonial assets; or matters requiring practitioners from multiple jurisdictions to collaborate on a concerted effort to achieve client’s intended goal.

Prior to specialising in Family and Contentious Probate, Adrian was a general civil litigator. He applies his experience and technical know-how in general civil litigation to assist his current practice.

Adrian studied English Literature at the University of Hong Kong and subsequently Law at Manchester University before being admitted as a Solicitor in Hong Kong in 2016. Adrian has completed the STEP Certificate in International Trust Management with distinction. He will continue with the STEP accreditation and attain full STEP membership.

 

 

    Key Cases

  • Acted for clients engaged in litigation in multiple jurisdictions to secure the return of children to their habitual residence of Hong Kong.
  • Secured injunctive relief for clients against opposing parties acting in contempt of Court.
  • Acted for clients challenging and defending forum and jurisdiction disputes.
  • Defended clients against disclosure of key company documents containing trade secrets or sensitive information.
  • Defended clients against inclusion of trust entitlements / dynastic wealth as part of matrimonial asset in financial proceedings.
  • Advising clients on challenges against validity of nuptial agreements.
  • Acted for clients seeking and defending against spousal and interim maintenance claims.
  • Advising clients on protection of dynastic wealth from potential divorce litigation.
  • Secured injunctive relief for clients on the basis of domestic violence.
  • Acted for client on the liquidation and dissolution of assets situated in multiple jurisdictions worth in excess of HK$100 million.
  • Acted for client in challenging the validity of a Will involving estate in excess of HK$400 million.

 

 

Hong Kong’s “Family Law Rising Stars” in Doyle’s Guide 2022

  • Joanne Brown, Partner and Head of the Family Practice at Tanner De Witt says: “Adrian is a skilled and empathetic lawyer who always goes the extra mile for our clients. I am thrilled he has been recognised in the inaugural ranking of Doyle’s Rising Stars.”.

 

Professional memberships