A leading expert on family aspects of private international law, Peter is Professor of International Family Law at the University of Dundee and a visiting professor at the University of Kobe in Japan. His research has been relied upon by leading courts globally, and in recent years has regularly been cited in proceedings of the Court of Justice of the European Union.
Peter McEleavy advises and gives expert evidence, domestically and internationally, on all aspects of international family law, especially in cases of international child abduction, jurisdiction disputes and public law children cases, which have a cross border element.
Peter also has a particular interest in connecting factors, and provides expert opinions on the interpretation of both habitual residence and domicile.
Peter has frequently been called upon to advise on contentious aspects of law reform: the Europeanisation of child abduction rules (Lord Chancellor's Department, 2002); the implementation of the 1996 Hague Convention on the Protection of Children (Ministry of Justice, 2009/10, 2012); and the introduction of same-sex marriage (Dicey, Morris & Collins on the Conflict of Laws.
International family law
The Hague Convention on International Child Abduction, OUP, 1999, (with P. Beaumont).
Dicey, Morris & Collins on the Conflict of Laws, 15th ed., General Editor Lord Collins of Mapesbury, Sweet & Maxwell, 2012.
Peter is responsible for chapters:
6 (Domicile & Residence);
20 (Legitimacy, Legitimation and Adoption) &
21 (Mental Incapacity).
Anton’s Private International Law, 3rd ed. SULI, W. Green, 2011, (with P. Beaumont); Chapters 3, 4, 5, 7, 11, 14 (non-Rome II rules only), 15-20.
Chapter 17 was cited by Advocate General Szpunar in (Case C-376/14 PPU) C v M  I.L.Pr. 455, at .
2015 ‘The European Court of Human Rights and the Hague Child Abduction Convention: Prioritising Return or Reflection?’ Netherlands International Law Review, pp. 365-405
2012 'Articles 47 - 52 in European Commentaries on Private International Law. Brussels II bis Regulation in P Mankowski & U Magnus (eds.), Sellier, Munchen, pp. 387 - 413
Cited by Advocate General Szpunar in (Case C-4/14) Bohez v Wiertz  I.L.Pr. 757, at , 
2012 'Judicial Communication and Co-operation and the Hague Convention on International Child Abduction' International Journal of Procedural Law pp. 36 - 53
2011 'La Residence Habituelle, un Critere de Rattachement en quete de son Identite - Perspectives du Common Law' Travaux du Comité Français de Droit International Privé, Pedone, Paris, pp. 127 - 146
2010 "Luxembourg, Brussels and Now The Hague: Congestion in the Promotion of Free Movement in Parental Responsibility Matters" in International & Comparative Law Quarterly, pp. 505 – 519
2010 "A Protocol for the 1980 Hague Convention?" in International Family Law, pp. 59 – 65
2008 "Evaluating the Views of Abducted Children: Trends in Appellate Case Law" in Child and Family Law Quarterly, pp. 230-254
2007 "Integrating the Brussels II bis Regulation in the United Kingdom", K. Boele-Woelki & C. González Beilfuss(eds) in Brussels IIbis: Its Impact and Application in the Member States, European Family Law series no. 14, Intersentia, Antwerp
2007 "Regression & Reform in the Law of Domicile" in International & Comparative Law Quarterly, pp. 453 – 462
2005 "The New Child Abduction Regime in the European Community: Symbiotic Relationship or Forced Partnership?" in Journal of Private International Law, pp. 5 – 34
This article has been cited regularly by Advocates General in cases before the Court of Justice of the European Union:
(Case C-498/14 PPU) Bradbrooke v Aleksandrowicz, Jääskinen A.G., at ;
(Case C-376/14 PPU) C v M  I.L.Pr. 455, Szpunar A.G. at ;
Opinion 1/13 Re International Child Abduction Convention  1 C.M.L.R. 880, Jääskinen A.G. at , ;
(Case C-400/10 PPU) J. McB. v. L. E., I.L.Pr. 24, Jääskinen A.G., .
2004 "The Communitarisation of Divorce Rules: What Impact for English and Scottish Law" in International and Comparative Law Quarterly, pp. 605 – 642
2003 "The Communitarisation of Family Law : Too Much Haste Too Little Reflection?", K. Boele-Woelki(eds) in Perspectives for the Unification and Harmonisation of Family Law in Europe, Intersentia, Antwerp, pp. 509 - 526
2002 "The Brussels II Regulation: How the European Community has Moved into Family Law" in International and Comparative Law Quarterly, pp. 883-908
Seminars and Lectures
2015 December: ‘Connecting Factors in Private International Law- The Challenging Rise of Habitual Residence’ University of Shandong, Jinan, China
October: ‘Building the bridge between “habitual residence” and “substantial connection”: Facts; Policy Objectives; and the Appropriate Forum’ International Social Service / Hague Conference, Geneva
January: ‘De-Mystifying the 1996 Hague Convention…’ Four Jurisdictions Family Law Conference, Edinburgh.
2014 October: ‘The Best Interests of the Child – from the Perspective of the 1980 Hague Convention’ University of Antwerp, Antwerp.
September: ‘International Protection of Children – Public Law Cases,’ 1 Garden Court – Dawson Cornwell Seminar, London.
July: ‘International Child Abduction and the European Union’ University of Kobe, Japan.
May: ‘Habitual Residence: Fact or Fiction; Friend or Foe?’ International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Annual Conference, North America Chapter, New York.
2013 October: International Protection of Children – Public Law Cases, 1 Garden Court – Dawson Cornwell Seminar, London
2012 October: ‘The European Union and the Abduction of Children Between Member States: Past, Present and Future’, Fresco Lecture University of Genoa, Italy
June: ‘Mutual Trust, Distrust and Human Rights – The Movement of Children in Europe’ Judicial Studies Committee / ERA, Edinburgh.
2011 September: ‘Recent CJEU Case Law on the Brussels IIa Regulation”, European Law Academy (ERA), Trier, Germany
2010 February: ‘A New Hague Convention is Coming…’ One Garden Court Seminar, Middle Temple, London.
2009 August: ‘A Protocol for the 1980 Hague Child Abduction Convention’ Commonwealth Judicial Conference, Cumberland Lodge, Windsor.
June: ‘La Résidence Habituelle, un Critère de Rattachement en quête de son Identité – Perspectives du Common Law’ 2009 Overseas lecture to the Comité Français de Droit International Privé, Cour de Cassation, Paris.
2008 December: ‘Parental Responsibility and Child Abduction within Council Regulation 2201/2003’ Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe Conference, Brussels.
April: ‘Habitual Residence: An Evolving Concept’ Trinity College, Dublin.
2007 March: ‘Applicable Law and Relations with Third States: The Use and Application of Habitual Residence’ University of Castellanza, Italy.
2006 September ‘The Free Movement of Children in Europe’ Middle Temple, London
2005 December ‘The Implementation of the Brussels II Bis Regulation in the United Kingdom’ University of Barcelona.
November ‘The Movement of Children’ Scottish Executive Seminar, Glasgow.
April ‘Impact of the Brussels II bis Regulation in the United Kingdom’ Université Jean Moulin, Lyons, France.
March:‘The New Child Abduction Regime in the European Community: Symbiotic Relationship or Forced Partnership?’ Journal of Private International Law Conference, Aberdeen University.
2004 December: ‘Habitual Residence : Simplicity or Uncertainty?’ Irish Centre for European Law, Trinity College, Dublin.
September: ‘The Operation of the Brussels II bis Regulation: Analysis of Problems.’ Delivered at a judicial seminar organised by the European Law Academy, Trier, Germany.
2003 November: ‘20 Years of the Hague Child Abduction Convention – An Evaluation’ International Conference on Child Abduction, Université Jean Moulin, Lyons, France.
May: ‘The Impact of the European Community’s Move into Family Law’ University of Cape Town.
2002 December: ‘The Communitarisation of Family Law: A Case of Too Much Haste, Too Little Reflection?’ Paper delivered at the Commission on European Family Law Conference, Utrecht, Netherlands.
December: ‘The Operation of the Brussels II Regulation: Analysis of Problems.’ European Law Academy, Trier, Germany.
September: ‘The Operation of the Brussels II Regulation, A Scottish Perspective’ British German Judicial Family Law Conference, Deutsche Richterakademie, Trier, Germany.