Ms Bernadette Chikwe > Duncan Lewis Solicitors > Hackney, England > Lawyer Profile

Duncan Lewis Solicitors
E8 2JS

Work Department



Housing director Bernadette Chikwe specialises in all aspects of housing litigation and tenant/landlord social housing matters. She has copious experience in both dealing with privately rented, local authority and social landlords rent and other grounds possession proceedings. She also has experience in dealing with mortgage possession proceedings, charging order proceedings and assisting clients make their applications to suspend warrants of eviction.

Bernadette has worked in a number of reported cases including the recent Abdi v the London Borough of Waltham Forest an s.204 appeal, on the issue of suitability of temporary accommodation of time and distance in the context of borough placements and the post Localism Act.

She has been a duty solicitor since 2002 at both Bow County Court and the Central London County Court. As a duty solicitor, she gives clients face to face advice before and after their hearings. She liaises with third parties, represents them in relation to their hearings and when appropriate, makes referrals to other organisations following the hearing.

Bernadette also supervises a remote advice service through the Legal Aid Agency Civil Legal Advice. This entails representing clients UK-wide, handling their instructions and processing their cases remotely through non face to face communications such as video calls, telephone and/or email.


Following over 10 years’ experience in other firms, Bernadette joined Duncan Lewis in 2013 and was appointed partner-level, director of housing in 2016.


Bernadette speaks Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, some German and basic French.


Bernadette completed her LPC at the College of Law in London and did the Common Professional Examination at City University. Prior to this she obtained a BA (Hons) in Business Studies from the University of North London.

Lawyer Rankings

London > Real estate > Social housing: tenant

Duncan Lewis Solicitors covers a broad range of social housing claims and ‘a high volume of legal aid cases‘ for tenants, including disrepair, homelessness and succession matters. The practice ‘shows strength in depth‘ and has a niche area of expertise in acting for tenants in urgent possession and unlawful eviction cases via the County Court Possession Duty Schemes in London, and has further niche expertise of assisting vulnerable clients through means of Equality Act defences as well as challenges against local authorities by way of judicial review proceedings. ‘Excellent leadersManjinder Kaur Atwal , Dianne Cowie, Bernadette Chikwe and David Head lead the London housing offering and are ‘highly experienced in all areas of housing law‘.