Hilka Hollmann

"Her commitment and work ethic are exemplary"Legal 500 2023


Hilka is known for her expertise in international and domestic adoptions, surrogacy and alternative families, cases involving the relocation and international movement of children, abductions, jurisdictional disputes, and complex care proceedings, often involving cross-border issues, and the most serious allegations of sexual abuse, non-accidental injuries, factitious illness and radicalisation, with concurrent criminal investigations/proceedings. 

She has consistently been ranked in the legal directories and is noted as the “top expert in international adoption and surrogacy cases” as “what she doesn’t know about international adoptions isn’t worth knowing”. She is “an impressive advocate who deals with some of the most complex cases for children” and has a “razor sharp mind”.

A former journalist, throughout her legal career, Hilka has practised children and family law, has been involved in many reported and high-profile cases in the High Court and Court of Appeal which have shaped English adoption and surrogacy law. She joined Dawson Cornwell as a partner in February 2023, having previously been a partner and head of department at other prominent firms specialising in children law. 

Hilka is on the Law Society’s Children Panel which means that she has had specialist training to represent children in court proceedings, either directly or through their children’s guardian. She sits on the Family Law Committee of the International Bar Association, and is a member of the Association of Lawyers for Children, Coram BAAF – the British Adoption and Fostering Organisation, the Child Abduction Lawyers’ Association and Resolution. She is a Resolution accredited Adoption and Child Abduction specialist and was one of the co-authors of Resolution’s response to the Law Commission’s consultation on proposed changes to the current surrogacy law. Hilka is a trustee for Children and Families Across Borders (CFAB).

Hilka won the prestigious Jordan’s Family Law Associate of the Year Award in 2015, is listed in Spear’s 500 and ranked and recommended in the legal directories. Legal 500 have described her as having “that uncanny knack of being able to see solutions to the most intractable problems facing her clients”, being “hugely experienced and confidence-inspiring”, and “a brilliant tactician and a tenacious lawyer … but not to the point of losing sight of what can be achieved by a collaborative approach”.

Chambers and Partners recognise her as “supportive, calm, collected, organised and reassuring. Her approach is always tactical, extremely detailed and tenacious, while also being gentle and fair. She plays the long game, does not make rash decisions and is always a few steps ahead of the other side.” “She has an encyclopaedic knowledge of adoption and surrogacy law … and is forensic, strategic and dedicated to her clients.

Hilka is bilingual in German and English, speaks conversational French and some Russian.

Awards & Recognitions

Leading Family & Divorce Lawyer
Hilka Hollmann was recommended in the "Leading Family & Divorce Lawyers" category.
London edition of the 2024 Doyle's guide

Next Generation Partner
They are growing from strength to strength with recruits such as Hilka Hollman.
Legal 500 2024

Leading Individual
Hilka Hollmann receives plaudits for her experience handling surrogacy and child welfare issues. She represents children in care proceedings as well as domestic and cross-border adoption matters. She is also notable for acting on relocations and international abductions. "She is very cool, calm, unflappable and works hard." "Hilka is careful and conscientious, and works incredibly hard for her clients. Whatever the case, she works with the same level of commitment to her clients and has endless amounts of energy." "Hilka not only brought a breadth of experience to our case, but also a high level of diplomacy and impressive advocacy skills." "She is very client-friendly, approachable and easy to work with. Hilka is also practical and really knows the law." "Hilka is very organised, tactical and focused on the detail."
Chambers UK 2023

Next Generation Partner
"Hilka Hollmann is a leading solicitor in the field of child law. She has particular expertise in complex cases with allegations of serious abuse and is experienced in representing high profile clients in cases where a very high degree of sensitivity and confidentiality is required. Her judgement is sound, her commitment and work ethic are exemplary and she has a wonderful ability to put her clients at ease." "Hilka Hollman is a standout solicitor.  She has patience and tenacity as well as supreme client and case judgment . She is a one woman wonder. The solicitor we would want on our side if we were in need."
Legal 500 2023

Reported Cases
2023 2020 2019 2017 2015 2014 2013 2012
  • My Legal Life The Law Society Gazette (July 2023)
  • Adoption of babies – ss 19 and 20 consent and Re A, B, and C by Hilka Hollmann and Sarah Cockburn for Family Law (April 2023)
  • Co-author of Resolution’s response to the Law Commission’s Consultation on changes to English surrogacy laws (2019)
  • Hilka is frequently invited to speak on international adoption and surrogacy and the law relating to children at seminars involving immigration lawyers, cross-practitioners, and social workers, both in the UK and internationally.
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