Roger Mullis has a traditional and commercial chancery practice with an emphasis on property litigation (including commercial and residential landlord and tenant), contentious probate and administration of estates, family provision, trusts, and professional negligence litigation relating to the above areas of practice.
He appears regularly in the Court of Appeal, the Business and Property Courts of the High Court (before judges and masters), the Family Division (in family provision cases), in county courts and in the Court of Protection, the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chambers) and the Land Registry and Leasehold Property Tribunals.
Roger acts in a very wide range of property matters, litigious and advisory, and commercial and domestic, including beneficial ownership of property (express, implied and resulting trusts), boundaries and easements, adverse possession, covenants, conveyancing, overage agreements, options, rectification of conveyances and of the Register, mortgages and nuisance and trespass claims.
He also acts for both commercial and residential landlords and tenants in a wide variety of cases, including forfeiture for non-payment of rent and breach of covenant, rent review, business tenancy renewals under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 and leasehold enfranchisement, relating to both eligibility and valuation. He has had a number of successes in the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal, in which he has been successful at all stages up to and including the Court of Appeal.
He has advised and acted for a number of local authorities in relation to a variety of property issues.
A number of Roger’s cases are highly confidential but some of his successes in relation to beneficial ownership claims include Patel v Patel  EWCA Civ 1242, in which he succeeded in establishing his clients’ beneficial ownership claim to its full extent after a 15-day trial, and Hurley v Hurley  1 FLR 213,  2 FCR 14,  Fam. Law. 16 (Court of Appeal), where his intervention on behalf of the wife’s mother in ancillary relief proceedings, claiming a beneficial interest in a ‘granny annexe’ arising by estoppel was wholly successful at first instance and led to an ultimately successful appeal process relating to the intervener’s costs.
Another significant case is Plant v Plant  1 BCLC 38;  BPIR 243 (Chancery Division, Carnwath J) where Roger successfully resisted an application relating to disclosure of documents and implied undertakings relating to the use of documents in a challenge to an IVA.
Roger’s work in this area is very wide-ranging, including contentious probate, administration actions, claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975, will construction and the administration of estates generally.
He has acted in relation to estates of very high value and secured very substantial awards (both at trial and by way of compromise) for applicants in all categories under the 1975 Act. In Borman v Lel  WTLR 237 (Chancery Division, Nigel Davis QC), he argued successfully for the validity of a will challenged on the grounds of want of due execution or want of capacity, having cross-examined a subscribing witness to the will on her evidence that she had not in fact witnessed the testator signing the will or signed the will in the testator’s presence.
He also has considerable expertise in drafting deeds of variation and advising on the Inheritance Tax consequences of wills and deeds of variation.
Roger is recommended by The Legal 500 UK Bar as a leading junior for private client, trusts and probate work. Although much of his work in this area is highly confidential, his practice includes all elements of trust law including the construction and rectification of trust deeds, breach of trustees’ duties, accounting, the appointment, retirement and removal of trustees, implied, constructive and resulting trusts, tracing of trust assets and the variation of trusts. He has assisted in the reconstruction of trust accounts in large and complex successive interest trusts.
One of Roger’s selected reported cases in which he successfully represented an applicantfor joinder in a claim relating to the construction and effect of a compromise relating to funds in a client account is Ondhia v Ondhia  EWHC 3040 (Ch) (Roth J).
Roger frequently advises and represents clients in court of protection matters including the appointment of deputies, challenges to the registration lasting powers of attorney, and statutory wills.
Roger Mullis has considerable expertise in complex partnership litigation. He most recently achieved a very favourable settlement of a bitterly fought family farming partnership dispute, involving issues relating to unlawful expulsion, the partnership assets, accounting and proprietary estoppel, on day two of a five-day High Court trial. Other notable reported cases include Patel v Patel  EWCA Civ 1242 (Court of Appeal), where he acted for the claimants in a 15-day county court trial relating to the existence of a family property investment partnership, the beneficial interests in the partnership property, and minute and complex accounting issues (involving allegations of fraud and forgery). At trial he won on every issue, and he subsequently succeeded in securing the dismissal of an appeal and refusal of permission for further appeal. Ward LJ referred to the ‘compelling logic’ of Roger’s ‘full and careful skeleton argument.’
Roger advises in and litigates a wide variety of professional negligence claims, acting both for claimants and professional indemnity insurers in claims against solicitors, conveyancers, surveyors, valuers and property management companies.
Roger advises in relation to inheritance tax and tax planning in connection with trusts and estates, and in relation to challenges to HMRC determinations as to liability to inheritance tax. He has recently succeeded in persuading HMRC to concede that a gift of a share in a family home was not a gift with reservation of benefit.
- “A very avuncular chap who is more than capable of dealing with tricky cases.” “A junior who knows the law very well and is quick to grasp the issues.” (Chancery: Traditional, Chambers UK Bar 2019)
- “He is extremely intelligent.” (Private Client: Trusts and Probate, The Legal 500 UK Bar 2019)
- “He is known for his legal acumen as well as his ability to handle certain types of very complex cases.” (Chancery: Traditional, Chambers UK Bar 2018)
- “Incredibly insightful and clever.” (Private Client, The Legal 500 UK Bar 2017)
- “He’s a real detailer, who is very bright and conscientious. His written work is very thorough. There was one case where I thought we were doomed, and he came up with ideas we hadn’t thought of. It saved the day.” (Chancery: Traditional, Chambers UK Bar 2017)
- “Efficient and exceptionally knowledgeable.” (Private Client, The Legal 500 UK Bar 2016)
- “He is brilliant with clients. He is very human, and he has a really good manner.” (Chancery: Traditional UK, Chambers HNW 2016)
- “An excellent advocate who marries very significant academic ability with an innate practicality.” “Quite understated but strong.” (Traditional Chancery, Chambers UK Bar 2015)
- “Very accessible and a clear, concise thinker.” (Private Client, Trusts and Probate, The Legal 500 UK Bar 2014)
- “Roger Mullis attracts briefs dealing with all manner of problematic probate, will and trust disputes. He is highly rated.” (Traditional Chancery, Chambers UK Bar 2011)
- “Roger Mullis covers a broad range of traditional chancery elements, although sources note that he is particularly good on wills, trusts and property disputes.” (Traditional Chancery, Chambers UK Bar 2010)
- “Wills and trusts, landlord and tenant issues and property disputes are just a few of the elements of Roger Mullis’s wide-ranging practice. An advocate in whom one can invest a considerable degree of trust, he recently acted for the landlord in a complex Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 renewal concerning a telecommunications mast; he also handled several complicated contested probate claims.” (Traditional Chancery, Chambers UK Bar 2009)
Roger is a member of the Chancery Bar Association and the Professional Negligence Bar Association