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David Hodson OBE MCIArb


David Hodson is a highly experienced  family law dispute resolution specialist, especially involving an international element or complex assets or issues.  He is co- founder and a partner at iFLG.

  • English solicitor (1978 and accredited 1996),
  • Mediator (1997),
  • Family arbitrator and Member Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (MCIArb) (2002),
  • Deputy District Judge sitting at the Central Family Court, London (1995)
  • Australian (NSW) solicitor and barrister (2003) and mediator
  • Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) 2014
  • Visiting Professor at the University of Law (ULaw) 2015
  • Honorary Professor at the University of Leicester 2017 

David is one of the world's leading family lawyers and regarded as one of the most innovative family lawyers of his generation:

  • He was the originator and a creator of family arbitration in England and Wales, now emulated in other countries.
  • He was instrumental in the 1990s in the creation of the English Family Law Accreditation Scheme.
  • He was co-founder in 1995 of the world's first multi-disciplinary metropolitan family law practice, combining lawyers, mediators and counsellors, and now much copied around the world
  • He was co-founder in 2007 of the world's first law firm dedicated to international families and their children, with many law firms worldwide subsequently setting up specialist international units
  • He is author of the leading textbook on international family law, now in 5th edition
  • In The Queen’s Birthday Honours List in June 2014 David was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his “Services to International Family Law".

After training and qualifying in Southampton, David spent 10 years at City of London law firms. David was a partner in City of London firm Theodore Goddard as head of their Family Law Department and then Frere Cholmonley Bischoff (later Eversheds). In 1995, he was joint founder of probably the world’s first metropolitan practice to combine family lawyers, mediators and counsellors and with an emphasis on a conciliatory and holistic approach. It was subsequently copied in many practices across the world. From 2003 to 2005 he worked in Sydney for a leading family law firm, qualifying as an Australian lawyer. He retains his entitlement to practice as a solicitor and barrister in Australia.

In 2007 he co-founded iFLG with Ann Thomas, the world's first law firm specifically dedicated to serving international families and their children and families with international, foreign assets.

He is past chair of the Resolution/Solicitors Family Law Association’s Financial Provision Reform Committee, Training Committee and Good Practice Committee and a founder member of its International Committee. He was a member of the Law Society’s Family Law Protocol Committee. He is a member of the Family Justice Council International Committee. He is past vice chair of the UK College of Family Mediators, the umbrella organisation for family mediation. He is a Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

He was chair of the Family Law Review group of the Centre for Social Justice which in July 2009 produced a report, “Every Family Matters”, a ground breaking set of major reforms of all aspects of family law, in order to support families, marriage and children. It has been well received and parts have been endorsed by the political parties and others involved in family law and has prompted changes in the law. In 2014 he was made a Fellow of the Centre for Social Justice.

In November 2011 he received the prestigious inaugural Jordans Family Law Commentator of the Year award for his outstanding contribution to commentary on family law matters, as voted by family lawyers.

He is author and editor of "The International Family Law Practice" published by Jordans the leading textbook on the international aspects of family law work. The 5th edition was published December 2016. With Ann Thomas, he is author of “When Cupids Arrow crosses National Boundaries: A Guide for interntaional families”, a simple Q&A guide for people who wish to distill the complexities of international family law issues. Both publications are available via iFLG.

He is also author of “Divorce Reform: a Guide for Lawyers and Mediators” (Thompson Reuters), “The Business of Family Law” (Jordans), “SFLA/Resolution Guide to International Family Law” and consulting editor of “Butterworth’s Family Law in Europe”.

He is an Accredited Family Law Specialist (with portfolios in Substantial Assets and International Cases), a Fellow of the International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, a past trustee of Marriage Resource, a Fellow of the Centre for Social Justice and a member of the Family Law Section of the Law Council of Australia. He has been a member of the Lawyers Christian Fellowship since his days as a trainee solicitor.

He has been a member of the Advisory Board of the Law Commission in respect of their work on "Marital Agreements, Matrimonial Property and Needs", and of the Advisory Board of the Financial Services Authority on provision of information for separating and divorcing couples.

In 2015, David was appointed a Visiting Professor of the University of Law and in 2017 he was appointed Honorary Professor at the Univeristy of Leicester. These appointments do not affect his day-to-day casework and other professional commitments.

David has written and spoken extensively on family law including many conferences abroad. 

David was ranked as a 'Leading Individual' in the 2019 Legal 500 UK Guide and described as 'very sharp, very reliable and very helpful. If anyone can get a case to settlement he can.' David was also ranked as a 'Leading Individual' in 2017. In previous editions David has been described as ‘London’s leading international family law specialist…particularly known for cases involving Australia’. As a mediator he ‘is very capable of ensuring that clients will arrive at a very clear, detailed and workable settlement. He is known for his tenacity and his very strong knowledge of the law’.

David is ranked by his peers in the Chambers HNW 2019 Directory for his "impeccable" knowledge of the field of family law and for “his encyclopaedic knowledge about international aspects".

The Legal 500 UK Guide 2020 Family section describe 'David Hodson has an exceptional knowledge of international family law and proceedure'. 'He is a one-man encyclopaedia on Brexit and its potential impact on international clients. He is a trusted and respected speaker and writer'. Clients say that 'David has immense international experience not just academic but enormous practical experience'. David is also noted as being a 'stand out individual'.

David is praised in the Family Mediation section as 'one of the most talented & experienced family and civil mediators in the land and beyond'. Furthermore, 'there is no better team for mediation involving international families. David is hugely experienced not only in law and mediation but the cultural issues that can impact on the resolution of a dispute. David is recommended particularly 'for financial mediation'.

'David Hodson has the intellectual rigour to get to grips with the most complex cases involving foreign jurisdictions, tax, business interests and has the advantage of sitting as a part-time DJ'.

If you would like to contact David please click here.