"One client commends him for being "an invaluable resource for property-related matters as well as general advice." Another source describes him as "a guru of the real estate sector.""Chambers Asia Pacific (2021)
FK Au is a partner of Mayer Brown. He has extensive experience in joint ventures, development and redevelopment of properties, project conveyancing, and project and end-user financing matters. He also advises on compulsory sale, and landlord and tenant matters, as well as on building, planning and property-related litigation matters.
FK Au is consistently rated a leading real estate lawyer by Chambers, PLC Which Lawyer? and The Legal 500 Asia Pacific. Chambers Asia Pacific (2016) notes that he has a "long-standing reputation in the market, impressive experience in real estate-related transactions and disputes and is considered 'very commercial'". He was described as "fair-minded" and "'definitely one of the best guys' in the field" by Chambers Asia Pacific (2008) and "'one of the best' in Hong Kong" by The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers (2009). According to The Legal 500 Asia Pacific (2007/08), he "is widely applauded by clients for major development work and substantial infrastructure projects".
FK Au speaks English and Cantonese. He is a Notary Public in Hong Kong.
Acted for a consortium member in the joint venture relating to the development of the River Trade Terminal.
Acted for the consortium in the land grant of the Airport Freight Forwarding Centre.
Acted for Cathay Pacific Airways on Land Grants of its headquarters building, staff hotel, flight training centre and warehouse building at Cathay City.
Acted for the Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering on acquisition of land for its second and third hangers from the Airport Authority, and acted for the Airport Authority on the Asia World Expo and second-airport hotel developments.
Acted for the consortium in the development agreement for Hong Kong Station and Tung Chung Station Package 2. Acted for Sun Hung Kai Properties on the Olympic Station Package 3 development and the Kowloon Station Packages 3, 5, 6 and 7 developments.
Acted for the consortium on ownership structure and Deed of Mutual Covenant for International Finance Centre. Acted for the consortium in the sale of 14 floors in Two International Finance Centre to the Hong Kong Government for use by the Monetary Authority.
Acted for Sun Hung Kai Properties in the leasing of 350,000, 300,000 and 420,000 square feet of offices in International Commerce Centre to Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank respectively for use as their regional headquarters.
Acted for the developer of Belcher Gardens in the redevelopment agreement, land exchange and subsequent strata sale and leasing of the new development.
Acted for Hong Kong Land in the development agreement and successful application for a compulsory sale order of Lai Sing Court, and in the purchase of the property at the auction pursuant to the order granted by the Lands Tribunal.
Acted for Lee Hysan in the successful enforcement of a restrictive covenant in the Court of First Instance, the Court of Appeal and the Court of Final Appeal.
Acted for the taxpayer in the District Court, the Court of Appeal and the Court of Final Appeal in the landmark stamp duty case of Arrowtown Assets vs. Collector of Stamp Revenue in which the Court of Final Appeal laid down new anti-avoidance principles.
Acted for various developers in successful applications for compulsory orders for sale of Chatham Garden, and developments in Wood Road, Shan Kwong Road, Chun Fai Terrace, Shiu Fai Terrace, Seymour Road, Prince Edward Road, Kai Yuen Street and Belcher's Street.
Acted for SEA Holdings in a successful appeal to the Building Appeal Tribunal against the Building Authority's disapproval of building plans for a suite hotel and in the successful appeal to the Town Planning Appeal Board against the refusal of the Town Planning Board to grant planning permission in a comprehensive development area adjacent to the East Rail.
Acted for Swire Properties in the successful judicial review before the Court of First Instance and in the Court of Appeal against the refusal of the Town Planning Board to grant planning permission to allow a more intensive development in the Mid-Levels.
Acted for the Hong Kong Institute of Certified Public Accountants in the drafting, promotion and presentation of a private member's bill to the Legislative Council resulting in substantial amendments being made to the Professional Accountants Ordinance.
- Acted for various developers in the successful application for approval by the Lands Department of the development of a multi-storey building at Po Shan Road, Shan Kwong Road and Junction Road respectively under the "one-house" restriction in the Government Lease.
- Acted for New Mercury Holding Corporation in successfully obtaining a declaration of the Court of Appeal that it was entitled to develop a pair of semi-detached houses on land in Kadoorie Avenue after the Director of Lands rejected the proposed development under the Government Lease.
- Acted for The Real Estate Developers Association of Hong Kong in (i) advocating the industry's interests in the legislative process of the Residential Properties (First-hand Sales) Ordinance and various amendments to the Stamp Duty Ordinance, (ii) the successful judicial review against the Town Planning Board on the imposition of development restrictions in various Outline Zoning Plans and (iii) in the Court of Final Appeal in the judicial review against the Building Authority on requirement to prove ownership and control when submitting building plans.
Acted for Hysan Development in the successful judicial review against the Town Planning Board in which the Court of Final Appeal held that the Board must have regard to the constitutional protected rights of land owners under the Basic Law when imposing restrictions on development.
Acted for SEA Holdings in the sale of shares in respect of land in Fo Tan under development at HK$1.4 billion, and in the sale of shares in respect of Dah Sing Financial Centre at HK$10 billion.
Acted for Swire Properties in the sale of shares in relation to an office building in Kowloon Bay under development at HK$6.528 billion.
- Australia, New South Wales
- Australia, Victoria
- Hong Kong
- Advisory Board, Salvation Army
- Honorary Legal Advisor, The Methodist Church, Hong Kong
- Hall of Fame - Real Estate (Hong Kong) – The Legal 500 Asia Pacific (2021-2023)
- Leading Individual - Real Estate (Hong Kong) – The Legal 500 Asia Pacific (2008-2020)
- Band 1 - Real Estate (International Firms), China – Chambers Greater China Region (2022, 2023)
- Band 1 - Real Estate (International Firms), China – Chambers Asia Pacific (2012-2018, 2021)
- “’very knowledgeable and experienced’ counsel who is capable of ‘overcoming hurdles and finding creative solutions’ for his clients” – Chambers Asia Pacific (2018)
- “one of the best residential development property lawyers in Hong Kong” – The Legal 500 Asia Pacific (2013)
- Leading Practitioner: China (Construction:Greater China International Firms PRC) – Expert Guides (2012)
- Featured Real Estate Lawyer – Expert Guides (2012)
- "a top lawyer with a fast turnaround time, and an understanding of issues from the client's perspective" – Chambers Asia Pacific (2012)
- Leading Real Estate Lawyer – The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers (2010 & 2012)
- Leading Individual - Real Estate (International Firms), China – Chambers Asia Pacific (2011 & 2019-2020)
- AsiaLaw Leading Property & Construction Lawyer – Asialaw Leading Lawyers (2001, 2002, 2006 & 2011)
- Endorsed by PLC Which Lawyer? 2011 (Real Estate: Hong Kong)
- Band 1 - Real Estate: Hong Kong – Chambers Asia Pacific (2008-2010)
- Band 1 - China, Real Estate: Hong Kong-based Counsel – Chambers Asia Pacific (2009)
- Highly Recommended Corporate Real Estate (China) Lawyer – PLC Which Lawyer? Yearbook (2007-2009)
- Leading Real Estate Lawyer – Guide to the World's Leading Real Estate Lawyers (2002 & 2007)
- Leading Real Estate Lawyer – An International Who's Who of Real Estate Lawyers (2002, 2003, 2006, 2008 & 2009)
- AsiaLaw Leading Real Estate Lawyer in Hong Kong – Asialaw Leading Lawyers (2003, 2007 & 2009)
- Highly Recommended Practitioner in Hong Kong – PLC Cross Border Real Estates Handbook (2005)
- Highly Recommended Corporate Real Estate Lawyer – Global Counsel Corporate Real Estate Handbook (2004/2005)
- Leading Real Estate Lawyer – Asian Legal Business Legal Who's Who (2003)
- Leading Commercial Property Lawyer – Legal 500 Asia Pacific (2001-2003)
- "With vast experience and a background in litigation, 'leading practitioner' FK Au is praised by clients for being 'fantastic at improving solutions' and really easy to work with.'" – Chambers Asia Pacific (2009)
- "...F K Au remain[s] two of the most distinguished practitioners in this discipline, and are praised by clients for their 'value-added' assistance." – Legal 500 Asia Pacific (2008/09)
- "An outstanding, highly constructive lawyer," F K Au is a "property development guru." – Chambers Global (2007)