Asela Wijeyaratne is a leading junior with a common law and commercial practice, focusing particularly on international and cross-border work.

Asela is recognised as a top tier / band 1 litigator in the field of travel law (Chambers & Partners, Legal 500 and Who’s Who Legal) and regularly acts for leading tour operators, air and cruise lines and consumers. His cases include those of the utmost severity and complexity, such as those arising from air crashes, maritime accidents and overseas terrorist attacks. He also regularly acts in the fields of domestic public, employers’ and motor liability, including in cases involving severe and catastrophic injury.

Asela’s practice also encompasses:

  • Commercial and business disputes and property litigation, particularly where cross-border or private international law issues arise.
  • High profile public inquiries, including the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.
  • Appellate public and constitutional law in appeals to the Privy Council, in particular representing Governments of the Commonwealth Caribbean.


Asela has extensive experience in claims arising from personal injury suffered overseas and is ranked in Chambers & Partners and Legal 500 as a Band 1 / Tier 1 leading junior in the field of Travel Litigation.

He is regularly instructed in respect of claims under the Package Travel Regulations, including advising as to the applicability of the Regulations (1992 and 2018), dynamic packaging, incidents which occur in the course of excursions and evidence as to standards of care abroad.

Asela has considerable experiences in cases where issues of jurisdiction and conflict of laws arise and frequently acts in claims pursued in the courts of England and Wales which are determined under foreign law. He is instructed in jurisdictional disputes and in claims involving disputes of forum between England and Wales and other national courts.  Asela is instructed in claims involving foreign domiciled defendants, overseas public liability insurers, foreign motor insurers and against the Motor Insurers’ Bureau for overseas road traffic accidents where drivers are untraced or uninsured.

Asela has extensive experience in pursuing and defending claims arising out of accidents and illnesses which occur in the course of air travel, in claims arising under the Warsaw Conventions and Montreal Convention. These range from air crashes to accidents during the course of carriage or during embarkation / disembarkation, as well as employers’ liability claims for cabin crew. Asela has a special interest in claims for psychiatric injury following air accidents and has written extensively on the issues arising in such claims.

Asela is frequently instructed in maritime personal injury matters, including those pursued in the Admiralty Court jurisdiction and is well placed to advise on the procedural and substantive issues which are particular to such claims. He was recently co-opted to the Admiralty Court Users’ Committee as a representative of the personal injury Bar. Asela is well-versed in claims involving the Athens Convention and Merchant Shipping regulations and has been involved in cases concerning the scope and application of such instruments. Asela is also instructed in claims pursued by crewmembers, including in LMAA arbitral proceedings.

Asela has a keen interest in claims involving medical treatment overseas. He has been instructed in numerous cases involving elective cosmetic surgery and emergency treatment overseas, including those resulting in fatalities. His work in this area often engages issues of standards of medical treatment overseas, including with pre-operative matters such as information provision and consent. Asela works closely medical experts and overseas lawyers to elicit the required evidence in such cases.

Asela also regularly advises and acts for claimants and insurers in the fields of domestic public, employers’ and motor liability. He has particular experience in claims giving rise to complex issues of medical causation and has acted both led and as sole junior in high value cases arising out of severe and catastrophic injury.

Asela also has experience in abuse claims, including those involving historic allegations and those with an international element.

Asela’s practice covers all areas of commercial and business law, with a particular focus on cases arising out of underlying property disputes and transactions.

He has acted in cases concerning commercial contractual disputes, debt and asset recovery, agency claims and claims involving breach of fiduciary duties (particularly in relation to company directors). Asela recently acted for the Respondent in Eason v Wong (re Alpha Student) [2017] EWHC 209 (Ch), a leading case on equitable purchasers’ liens.

Asela’s practice encompasses a wide range of property law, including both residential and commercial landlord and tenant and real property.

In landlord and tenant matters, Asela also advises and acts in possession and forfeiture claims, including advising on the entitlement to possession, drafting notices and pleadings and providing representation at hearings. He also has considerable experience in claims arising out of disrepair and dilapidation. Asela acted for the Respondents in the Court of Appeal in Barrow v Kazim [2018] EWCA Civ 2414 which considered the definition of “landlord” under the Housing Act 1988.

Asela routinely appears in the Property Chamber of the First-Tier Tribunal in service charge, right to manage and land registration disputes and advises landlords and tenants on the bringing and defending of applications and on enforcement.

In real property matters, Asela has experience in claims involving easements and covenants, nuisance and trespass, boundary disputes and adverse possession. He has also been instructed in disputed party wall matters and neighbour disputes.

Notable Property cases

Barrow v Kazim [2018] EWCA Civ 2414

Acted for the Respondents in the Court of Appeal in a leading case considering the definition of “landlord” under the Housing Act 1988.

Asela has a developing appellate practice in applications and appeals to the Privy Council. He has been instructed in civil, criminal, public and constitutional law applications, in particular representing Governments of the Commonwealth Caribbean.

Asela maintains a keen interest in international human rights law and international humanitarian law, having obtained a Masters in Public International Law (Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge).

Asela was instructed on behalf of six bereaved families in phase 1 of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

Asela was also instructed (with Rupert Butler) by the estate of the late Lord Janner of Braunstone QC in The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

Asela represented a bereaved family in the inquests arising from the terrorist attack in Sousse, Tunisia in June 2015. He has particular expertise and experience in inquests arising out of fatal overseas accidents and incidents and from overseas medical treatment

Notable Public Inquiries and Inquests cases

Grenfell Tower Inquiry

Acted for bereaved families in phase 1 of the independent public inquiry of the fire at Grenfell Tower on 14 June 2017.

The Tunisia Inquests

Acted for a bereaved family in the inquests following the terrorist massacre in Sousse, Tunisia on 26 June 2015

Asela is able to accept instructions directly from members of the public, companies and other entities through the public access scheme (also known as direct access).  He has acted, advised and drafted pleadings and documents for a number of individuals and small and medium sized businesses on a direct access basis. He is happy to accept instructions on a direct basis in appropriate cases. If you wish to instruct Asela on a direct basis, please speak to the practice managers.

For more information on public access, please see the Bar Council website.

"“Asela is an exceptionally talented junior. He performs well in conferences with clients, giving clear and simple advice. He is able to see through complex procedural issues to offer pragmatic solutions and is aware of the commercial considerations of the claim as a whole.” “Asela has a massive intellect, is extremely commercial and offers excellent client care.” “Asela is a very skilled advocate and his advice is extremely thorough. He delivers excellent results and is a pleasure to work with.”" - Travel: International Personal Injury

Chambers & Partners 2024

'Asela is an exceptional junior. His memory and recall are both impeccable and he provides clear, pragmatic advice.' - Personal injury, industrial disease and insurance fraud

Legal 500 2024

"His support is invaluable, as is his knowledge of travel law and advocacy in general." "He is empathetic, clear and concise." "Asela provides thorough and carefully considered advice." - Travel: International Personal Injury - London (Bar)

Chambers and Partners 2023

‘Extremely knowledgeable and capable. He is a pleasure to work with’. Ranked: Tier 1 - Travel Law - UK Bar

Legal 500 2023

"A very thorough barrister and one of the leading junior counsel for travel law matters. His advice is always clear and he will consistently try and make himself available to talk through a case." "He's efficient and is very friendly with clients and judges." - Travel: International Personal Injury - London (Bar)

Chambers & Partners 2022

‘ One of the leading juniors in the area of international injury, with particular expertise in matters of jurisdiction and Rome II matters. ’ Leading Junior - Travel Law

Legal 500 2022

"His technical knowledge is exceptional and his abilities on paper and in court are outstanding." "Clients really like him and he is very professional in court." - Travel: International Personal Injury

Chambers and Partners 2021

‘He provides very reliable, intelligent advice and delivers those opinions with a great deal of consideration towards client care.’ - Leading Junior - Travel law (including jurisdictional issues)

Legal 500 2021

"His advice, whether written or verbal, is always on the money."

Chambers & Partners 2020

“"He is very bright and approachable, and provides very careful advice."

Chambers & Partners 2020

"He is a sensible, calm and knowledgeable practitioner." "He has the ability to take very complicated facts and laws and translate them into understandable explanations for his clients."

Chambers & Partners 2020

"He is thoughtful, insightful and thorough in his approach to litigation".

Legal 500 2020

"He is thoughtful, insightful and thorough in his approach to litigation".

Legal 500 2020

“"He's very knowledgeable, user-friendly and very commercially minded."

Chambers & Partners 2019

"He's calm, approachable and provides very sound and clear advice. He cuts to the nub of matters very quickly." "He's very knowledgeable, user-friendly and very commercially minded." "He has very strong negotiation skills and is able to reconcile complex expert evidence and transmit information in a way that is easily understandable to lay clients."

Chambers & Partners 2019

“He’s an exceptional junior who understands complex issues with ease and gives sound advice on liability which makes him a joy to work with”

Legal 500 2019

'Asela has extensive knowledge of travel litigation and marine issues. He takes a logical and methodical approach, and has a confidence in court that is effective.' 'He is building a very good reputation among peers. Asela is a versatile commercial-minded advocate. He is both knowledgeable and realistic in his approach, always considering the end result.'

Chambers & Partners 2018

“He’s an exceptional junior who understands complex issues with ease and gives sound advice on liability which makes him a joy to work with”

Legal 500 2019

‘A class act, who will be one of the stellar practitioners of the future.’

Legal 500 2018

For Help or Advice…

Please contact us either by telephone: +44 (0)20 7415 7800 or email:

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