Debbie Chism - Spear's Magazine

Debbie Chism


Debbie Chism
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‘We shut the door on a lot of special contribution arguments,’ Debbie Chism declared after overturning a ruling that had awarded the mother of a disabled child only 29 per cent of her husband’s wealth. The husband, a successful businessman, obtained the initial ruling using the rare ‘genius’ argument in divorce law, which Chism successfully challenged in the Court of Appeal.

Lawyers called it a ‘critical win for gender equality’. Chism is no stranger to such successes. Her clientele spans the globe, with enquiries coming in from a range of entrepreneurs, celebrities and professionals.

And peer recommendations have only accelerated her popularity as ‘an absolute star performer’ – in 2019 she was crowned Family Lawyer of the Year at the Spear’s Wealth Management Awards. Chism pursues litigation where necessary, but her practice is also uniquely collaborative.

‘I’m always looking for a creative way to solve a case,’ she says. ‘It’s always best to find a solution that both parties can live with.’

However, she does admit that alternative dispute resolution is not always a ready option when a separation is particularly bitter, when clients ‘are upset – and they’re not necessarily in the right headspace’.