Law is my love.
Sport is my passion.
Mental Health is my cause

About me

I am a European lawyer from Barcelona, a member of the International Bar Association Wellbeing Task Force, a mental health activist, a former basketball player and coach, and a fan of Barça Women’s Football. Body Pump, Buttocks-Abdominals-Legs exercise (GAP, in Spanish), Yoga, Pilates, and Spinning practices are parts of my 2022-2023 Healthy Package. 

My legal research focuses on analysing the International & European Human Rights Law (especially in disability, sports, and business fields) and the case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union and the European Court of Human Rights regarding these topics. I am paying particular attention to the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and the development of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights at the European level.

I am currently an external legal advisor of the Federation of Catalan Entities of Mental Health in First Person (VEUS Federation). Furthermore, I am the founder of, a Spanish platform which shows what other jurisdictions are doing to promote lawyers’ mental health. Still, I am also looking for new international legal challenges. For this reason, I will be delighted to explore potential collaborations if you have a proposal for me. 

No more silence

At the end of 2010, I was diagnosed with severe Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. This mental health problem disabled me from doing anything. Some doctors were surprised when I told them I was studying in the third year of my law degree. «How is it possible that you are at university with these crippling OCD symptoms? I recommend you to take a rest,» one doctor said.

I rejected his proposal immediately because I needed to study to be alive. Of course, it was impossible to follow the rhythm of my classmates because of the obsessive-compulsive pervasive relationship, but studying Law was a powerful reason to wake up every morning and continue with my life.

After fighting for over a decade, thanks to my doctors, family, and friends, I can lead a functional life. Although I still take drugs (much less than a few years ago), and sometimes OCD bothers me, I have recovered the passion and energy for living and learning from others.

From the beginning, I decided to make my mental health condition public. LinkedIn was my first platform. My parents and friends were concerned about this open position because of the enormous stigma surrounding mental health. At that time, I wanted to do it because I needed to express my feelings which they had been silenced for years. It was like a demonstration of freedom—no more silence. I was willing to accept the consequences of spreading the message.

The truth is that I don’t regret my past actions in this regard. I’d do it again. I may have lost opportunities, or some people were away from me. But believe me…When someone has reached rock bottom in a specific moment of his/her life, every day that passes is a blessing.

Manel Atserias Luque

Despite difficulties, I graduated in Law and obtained a Master’s in Legal Sciences at Pompeu Fabra University, having participated in the academic programme «Comparative, International, and European Law» at the University College Dublin Sutherland School of Law.

My first professional experience was related to Sports Law. Mainly, the case affected basketball coaches’ licences involving over 8,500 basketball coaches. I had the opportunity to present a legal report to lawmakers from the Parliament of Catalonia explaining the dispute and write articles in the media defending coaches’ interests.

Afterwards, I was recruited by the VEUS Federation to provide legal advice and help to persons with mental health problems, as well as advocate for the UN CRPD.

At the same time, I founded and chaired the Mental Health Institute of Legal Professions to break the stigma surrounding mental health in the Spanish legal community. This non-profit organisation comprised more than 30 international professionals (lawyers, psychiatrists, and psychologists) from Spain, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia. Among other things, I participated in different conferences and legal media, promoted the first Study on Spanish Lawyers’ Health and Well-Being, and drafted the Healthy Business Charter (signed by the General Council of Spanish Lawyers). A complete list is detailed in my CV (you can download it here).

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