Jeff Yau


2020 (Hong Kong)



Areas of Practice

Chinese Customary Law
Commercial & Banking Law
Compulsory Sales of Land
Equity & Trusts
Intellectual Property
Land Resumption & Land Compensation
Mental Health
Probate & Succession
Property & Land
Public Law & Judicial Review
Unjust Enrichment


Secretary: Ms. Karen Leung
[email protected]

Jeff has a broad civil practice with a primary focus on commercial disputes, company and insolvency law, land and property as well as probate, trusts and mental health matters. He also has experience in advising on employment law, intellectual property and administrative law.

He is at the same time also actively developing a practice in international commercial arbitration and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and an HKIAC Accredited Tribunal Secretary.

Jeff is regularly instructed to appear as an advocate in the High Court (including the Court of Appeal), the District Court, the Lands Tribunal, statutory boards and arbitral proceedings. He has significant experience throughout the civil litigation process, including interlocutory applications, trials, appeals and taxation proceedings.

He also frequently acts for listed companies and high-net-worth individuals on his own and as part of a larger team in complex and high-value disputes with a cross-border dimension. He has also acted for and advised public bodies.

Outside of his practice, he is a Professional Consultant at the Faculty of Law of the Chinese University of Hong Kong teaching the conveyancing and probate practice module on its Postgraduate Certificate in Laws course.

Jeff studied at the University of Hong Kong, where he graduated third in his cohort in law and was placed on the Dean’s Honours List for three consecutive years. He went on to read for a Master of Laws degree at King’s College London and graduated top of his class with the Dickson Poon School of Law Prize.

Born and educated in Hong Kong, Jeff is adept at using of the Chinese language in oral advocacy and drafting legal documents.

  • LLM, King’s College London
  • PCLL, The University of Hong Kong
  • LLB, The University of Hong Kong
  • BBA (Law), The University of Hong Kong
  • St Joseph’s College, Hong Kong
  • Member, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (MCIArb) (2022)
  • Insolvency Preparatory I & II (as part of the Professional Diploma in Insolvency programme), The Hong Kong Institute of Certified Public Accountants (2018, 2022)
  • Accredited Civil & Commercial Mediator, Society of Mediators, UK (2019)
  • HKSI Practicing Certificates (Securities; Corporate Finance), Hong Kong Securities and Investment Institute (2015)
  • The Dickson Poon School of Law Prize (2019)
  • Second Honourable Mention for Best Mooter, the 16th Red Cross International Humanitarian Law Moot (Asia-Pacific Region) (2018)
  • MW Lo Memorial Scholarship (2017)
  • Dean’s Honours List (2015, 2016, 2017)
  • CH Chan Scholarship (2012)
  • Professional Consultant, Faculty of Law of the Chinese University of Hong Kong
  • Contributor, Lexis Advance® Hong Kong Practical Guidance on “Intestacy” and “Will Drafting” by LexisNexis

Commercial & General Civil

  • Target Insurance Company Limited v Ng Yu & Ors:
    • [2023] HKCFI 7; [2023] HKCFI 565 — discharge of an ex parte Mareva injunction for US$150 million fraud claim involving the largest motor insurer in Hong Kong (led by Robert Whitehead SC)
    • [2022] HKCFI 1362 — obtaining an interim stay and variation of a disclosure order (led by Robert Pang SC)
  • Realord Group Holdings Limited & Anor v Win Dynamic Limited & Anor (HCA 716/2021) — acting for the plaintiffs in enforcing a deed of gift under which an offeree undertook to advance the whole consideration of over HK$250 million under a voluntary general offer to the company (led by Jin Pao SC and with Vincent Chen)
  • Li Ngan Kwan v Gao Li Hui & Anor (HCA 276/2007) — acting for the 1st Defendant in defending a claim to set aside a gift of a controlling interest in a hotel in Shenzhen of a value of over RMB¥300 million on the ground of forgery and breach of fiduciary duties (with Andrew Mak)
  • Agostino Gallucci v Marco Toscano & Ors (HCA 199/2017) — acting for a minority shareholder of a BVI company in enforcing a right of pre-emption under a shareholders’ agreement governed by Hong Kong law, which has been triggered by a sale and purchase agreement governed by Italian law (sole advocate)
  • Advising on and/or acting for parties in relation to (i) joint venture, partnership and shareholder disputes, and (ii) investment agreement disputes

Bankruptcy & Corporate Insolvency

  • Dadra Inc. v Chan Choi Har Ivy [2023] HKCA 707 — interim stay of an imprisonment order pending appeal on the ground that the Court lacks jurisdiction to proceed with an Ord.49B examination vis-à-vis a bankrupt (sole advocate)
  • Wu Ming Fat Simon v Ho Siu Lun Alan [2023] HKCFI 1088 — resisting setting-aside application of a statutory demand on the ground that no security has been created over the underlying debt and failure to state the same in the statutory demand does not render it invalid (sole advocate)
  • Re Ashit Sud (Debtor) [2022] HKCFI 1269, reported at [2022] 2 HKLRD 898; [2022] 4 HKC 575 — resisted winding-up and bankruptcy petitions for a US$30 million debt on the ground that the creditor rejected a reasonable offer to compromise and secure (sole advocate)
  • NWK 對 CCL [2022] HKCFI 3595, reported at [2023] 4 HKC 160 — resisted an application to review a decision to set aside a statutory demand (sole advocate)
  • Re Aeso Holding Limited (HCCW 218/2017) — acting for a listed company in reviewing the taxation of former provisional liquidators’ bill (sole advocate)
  • Advising on and/or acting for petitioners and debtors in relation to various winding-up and bankruptcy proceedings, including but not limited to unfair prejudice petitions, setting-aside of statutory demands, review of remuneration of provisional liquidators, etc.

Will, Trusts, Probate & Mental Health

  • Re KCC — acting for an interim receiver and later committee of an alleged MIP in the mental health proceedings and the related proceedings for recovery of misappropriated assets in the sum of HK$30 million and disclosure against the alleged MIP’s former solicitors and contempt proceedings (led by Sara Tong SC)
  • Re YLC — acting for a committee appointed under the Mental Health Ordinance (Cap. 136) on whether an action/application brought by a committee before the sanction of the mental health court has been obtained is valid (sole advocate)

Property & Conveyancing

  • Advising on and/or acting for parties in relation to (i) conveyancing disputes, (ii) claims of adverse possession and various rights of easement, (iii) Chinese customary law, in particular the administration of tso/tong affairs, (iv) disputes involving the development of small houses in the New Territories, (v) co-ownership disputes (including applications for the partition), (vi) alleged non-compliance of conditions under leases, guesthouse licences, etc., (vii) building management disputes and (viii) compulsory sale proceedings


  • Lam Sin-yi Sindy v Leung King-wai William t/a William KW Leung & Co:
    • [2021] HKCA 720 — resisting an application for leave to appeal on the ground that the Court of First Instance has the jurisdiction to draw factual inferences on appeal from statutory tribunals (sole advocate)
    • [2020] HKCFI 2525 — reported at [2020] 5 HKLRD 170, appealing against a decision of the Minor Employment Claims Adjudication Board dismissing a claim for unpaid wages on the ground that there were special circumstances when the appellant tendered her resignation (sole advocate)
  • Acting for a former Head of China of an investment bank in respect of an employment claim against his former employer (led by Senior Counsel)
  • Advising a statutory body on various employment issues (led by Senior Counsel)
  • Advising on and/or acting for parties in relation to issues such as (i) non-competition clause, (ii) termination of employment contracts, (iii) grant of statutory holidays/ rest days, (iv) dismissal and (v) potential discrimination claims etc.

Civil Procedure

  • Li Ngan Kwan & Ors v Gao Li Hui & Ors [2021] HKCFI 2878; [2022] HKCFI 171; [2023] HKCA 781 — resisted an application by the plaintiff to amend a pre-CJR statement of claim on the grounds of inexplicable delay and inconsistency with earlier pleadings; leave to appeal at the Court of First Instance by the plaintiff refused (with Andrew Mak)

Judicial Review and Administrative Law

  • Vivid Limited v Hotel and Guesthouse Accommodation Authority (Appeal Case Nos. (1) 53-1/2022 & (2) 54-2/2022), appeal before the Appeal Board (Hotel and Guesthouse Accommodation) against the decision of the Hotel and Guesthouse Accommodation Authority to refuse to renew a license to operate on the ground that the Authority misinterpreted the word “hotel” under section 12 J of the Hotel and Guesthouse Accommodation Ordinance (Cap. 349) (sole advocate)
  • Re 3rd Floor, No. 53 Ma Tau Chung Road, Kowloon (Appeal Case No. 2023-001): Appeal before Home Purchase Allowance Appeals Committee against the Lands Department’s refusal to grant full allowance to two former registered owners on the ground that they have failed to establish their owner-occupier status (sole advocate)
  • Nam Lun International Trading Co Ltd v Director of Marine (AAB No. 18/2023): appeal before the Administrative Appeal Board against the Director of Marine’s decision not to grant various permits to a berth operator at a public cargo working area (sole advocate)


  • HKIAC Rules, acting for a respondent in resisting the specific performance of an investment agreement and advancing counterclaims with a view to unwinding a merger of various corporate entities (sole advocate)
  • Advised a PRC media company on the recoverability of damages for over RMB¥170 million arising from a breach of an investment agreement (led by Robert Whitehead SC)
  • HKIAC Rules, acted for a PRC beverage company in defending a claim of over US$450 million, which involved various interim proceedings such as applications for injunctive relief, joinder, jurisdictional challenge, etc. (with Vincent Chen)