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Rajnaara C Akhtar

Associate Professor in Law, De Montfort University

Rajnaara is a socio-legal researcher with a focus on family law. In particular, her research centres on marriage formalities and legal treatment of non-state registered religious-only marriages. Her research into informal marriages looks at transitional relationship norms, normative influences, legal consequences and autonomy. She has conducted extensive empirical fieldwork in this area in the UK, Qatar and Australia. Further areas of research include gendered studies of family law, currently focussing on women’s marriage and divorce experiences in Qatar. Other areas of interest include international child law and gender and human rights law.

She teaches at both undergraduate and post-graduate levels including Family Law, International Child Law, Gender and the Law, International Law and Human Rights.

Rajnaara received her PhD from the University of Warwick in 2013, where she continued as a part-time lecturer before joining Leicester De Montfort University Law School in February 2016. Her doctoral research focussed on legal pluralism, family law and family dispute resolution.

Rajnaara obtained an LLM in Human Rights Law from the University of Nottingham and is also a qualified solicitor, having trained with international law firm Eversheds LLP. She completed the Legal Practice Course at Nottingham Law School.


  • –present
    Senior Lecturer in Law, De Montfort University
  • 2009–2016
    PhD Candidate, Post-Doc, University of Warwick