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United Kingdom > London Bar > Employment > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Index of tables

  1. Employment - Leading sets
  2. Leading Silks
  3. 2018 Silks
  4. 2019 Silks
  5. Leading Juniors

Leading Silks

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  4. 4

2018 Silks

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2019 Silks

  1. 1

Leading Juniors

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    • Daniel Barnett - Outer Temple ChambersHis oral advocacy is highly impressive and his written advocacy is powerful and persuasive.
    • Talia Barsam - DevereuxHer manner with opposing counsel and the tribunal is calculated to give her client the best possible chance at any hearing.
    • Andrew Blake - 11KBWHe is an assured and meticulous representative with excellent client-management skills.
    • Lucy Bone - Littleton ChambersGets to the nub of the issue quickly and handles difficult clients well.’
    • Sarah Bowen - 3PBShe is a fantastic advocate and is really able to pick out the strengths in complex cases with lots of allegations.
    • David Brook - Henderson ChambersGets to the nub of the issue quickly and handles difficult clients well.
    • Edward Capewell - 11KBWCalm under pressure, understated but knowledgeable and a very safe pair of hands.
    • Catherine Casserley - CloistersThe depth of her knowledge of discrimination law is invaluable.
    • Thomas Cordrey - DevereuxHighly impressive up and coming junior counsel. He prepares thoroughly and is clear, positive and confident in the delivery of his advice.
    • Naomi Cunningham - Outer Temple ChambersA passionate and intellectually engaged lawyer who has an unusually creative approach to using the law in innovative ways.
    • Charlotte Davies - Littleton ChambersEasy to work with, very responsive and extremely intelligent.
    • Ronnie Dennis - 11KBWA tower of strength with incredible capacity for work and someone you would always want on your team.
    • Olivia-Faith Dobbie - CloistersExcellent ability to digest complex fact patterns and legal issues and to distil these into a sensible and commercial proposals for the client.
    • Kathleen Donnelly - Henderson ChambersExcellent advocate with tenacious attention to detail on complex cases.
    • Peter Edwards - DevereuxHis experience on trade union matters and related legal issues is invaluable.
    • Martin Fodder - Littleton ChambersSafe pair of hands for any whistleblowing query with outstanding knowledge in this complex area.
    • Harini Iyengar - 11KBWListens carefully to clients and reflects their instructions with well-constructed advice.
    • Spencer Keen - Old Square ChambersA preferred counsel for disability discrimination cases with an ability to advance complex argument in a persuasive form.
    • Michael Lee - 11KBWSuperb for his level – excellent attention to detail, commercial, hardworking and excellent level of legal knowledge.
    • John Mehrzad - Littleton ChambersImpeccable and technically excellent; a go-to barrister for business protection work and any employment dispute with a High Court angle.
    • Eleena Misra - Old Square ChambersWorks tirelessly, quickly grasps the key issues in a case and has a fantastic client manner.
    • Ijeoma Omambala - Old Square ChambersHer strengths lie in her ability to engage with claimants and clearly explain legal concepts and tribunal process.
    • Deshpal Panesar - Old Square ChambersVery clear thinking and able to get right to the heart of the matter very speedily.
    • Laura Prince - Matrix ChambersShe has an incredible ability to absorb extensive documentation and complex facts quickly and accurately.
    • Craig Rajgopaul - Littleton ChambersA star of the future who combines user-friendliness with a razor-sharp intellect and incisiveness.
    • Michael Salter - Ely Place ChambersClear in his advice, well-organised and inspires confidence in his clients and is appropriately assertive in his advocacy.
    • Lydia Seymour - Outer Temple ChambersAn extremely able counsel; client friendly, clear, strategically and legally astute and a real pleasure to work with.
    • Ming-Yee Shiu - Littleton ChambersHardworking and of great assistance, completely on top of the detail, and showing good judgement.
    • Mark Stephens - HardwickeExcellent ability to digest complex issues and to give clear, succinct and effective advice.
    • Christopher Stone - Devereux‘An extremely impressive technical lawyer, who is an excellent choice for a respondent facing a discrimination claim or litigant in person.’
    • Judy Stone - 11KBWGood tactical judgement, very effective with demanding clients, rolls up her sleeves and an excellent team player.
    • Paul Strelitz - HardwickeVery quick to get to the heart of a dispute and is known for his exceptional written work.
    • Rebecca Tuck - Old Square ChambersPersonable, works well with clients and has good insight into anticipating a tribunal panel's questions and direction.
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    • Katherine Apps - 39 Essex ChambersExtremely clever and the right person to go with a difficult and novel point of law.
    • Rehana Azib - 2 Temple GardensParticularly good for complex cases involving disability and mental health issues.
    • Kate Balmer - DevereuxExtremely diligent and all over the detail as well as really good and patient in cross-examination.’
    • Lydia Banerjee - Littleton ChambersA future star of the Bar with all the required legal skill sets that exudes a sense of calm control.
    • Elaine Banton - 7BRA very knowledgeable and compelling employment law advocate with a first-class eye for the key point in a case.
    • Susan Belgrave - 7BRCalm and authoritative while able to identify with the client.
    • Laura Bell - DevereuxCalm under pressure, clear commercial advice, very personable and approachable as well as impressive during hearings.
    • Nicola Braganza - Garden Court ChambersShe has impeccable client care skills, superb drafting and advocacy skills and is a tenacious negotiator.
    • Tom Brown - CloistersA dream to work with. Strategic and smart.
    • Alice Carse - DevereuxShe has a confident manner which instills confidence in clients.
    • James Chegwidden - Old Square ChambersHis written arguments are excellent and he has a way of marshalling complicated issues with tremendous force.
    • Betsan Criddle - Old Square ChambersShe has a formidable courtroom presence and is particularly strong in both her written and oral advocacy.
    • Jesse Crozier - DevereuxClients really like him for his strong cross-examination skills and excellently prepared skeleton arguments.
    • Carolyn D’Souza - 12 King's Bench WalkHer knowledge of whistleblowing law is vast; her strengths lie in being able to quickly build a rapport with clients and her ability to work collaboratively in shaping a case.
    • Jake Davies - Five PaperA thorough, robust and tenacious approach to tricky cases as well as very strong advocacy.
    • Jonathan Davies - Serjeants' Inn ChambersIdentifies issues quickly and provides advice in a direct albeit customer-friendly way.
    • Daniel Dyal - CloistersVery thorough, knowledgeable and gives some excellent guidance.
    • Katherine Eddy - 11KBWA phenomenal advocate.
    • Iris Feber - 42 Bedford RowShe has an excellent breadth of legal knowledge which she applies in a practical and effective manner.
    • Emily Gordon-Walker - Outer Temple ChambersMasterful in her grasp of legal issues, forceful in her cross-examination and persuasive in her legal argument.
    • Patrick Halliday - 11KBWHe is very good at grasping the details in complex cases.
    • Amanda Hart - Doughty Street ChambersHighly intelligent and has an excellent knowledge of employment law.
    • Georgina Hirsch - DevereuxA great in-depth commercial knowledge of the politics and legalities of trade union cases.
    • Matthew Hodson - HardwickeVery good at thinking on his feet as well as very good with clients and helps them to understand legal points easily and quickly.
    • Orlando Holloway - 42 Bedford RowVery easy to work with, excellent with clients and robust in the tribunal setting.
    • Sarah Keogh - Old Square ChambersShe is eloquent before the court and has a very good manner with clients and the other side.
    • Tom Kirk - Ely Place ChambersHe is an academically terrific opponent, whose advocacy is both measured and incisive.
    • Peter Linstead - Outer Temple ChambersExtremely bright, thorough, competent and has an excellent manner with clients putting them at their ease.
    • Saul Margo - Outer Temple ChambersHighly able employment barrister who fights hard for his client and combines excellent judgement with attractive and forceful advocacy.
    • Alice Mayhew - DevereuxAn exceptional senior junior who knows when to charm and when to strike, ensuring nothing less than the best result for clients.
    • Aileen McColgan - 11KBWShe draws on a fountain of knowledge to provide comprehensive but commercial advice.
    • Gordon Menzies - Six Pump CourtUnflappable, a safe pair of hands, produces work of the highest quality and can deal with any opponent.
    • Julian Milford - 11KBWHe has an exceptional mind as well as being extraordinarily good with all kinds of different clients.
    • Jack Mitchell - Old Square ChambersExtremely user friendly and possesses an encyclopaedic knowledge of whistleblowing law.
    • Caroline Musgrave - CloistersExcellent on her feet and punching above her weight in terms of her year of call.
    • Nicola Newbegin - Old Square ChambersExceptionally bright barrister, who is forensic in reviewing and understanding the matter at hand.
    • Adam Ohringer - CloistersIntegrity and commitment – Adam has these traits in spades.
    • Simon Pritchard - Blackstone ChambersA very well-rounded advocate who is extremely personable, fiendishly bright and very commercial.
    • Sebastian Purnell - DevereuxAn excellent advocate who is calm and fair but nonetheless very robust, and is particularly good when dealing with litigants in person.
    • Iain Quirk - Essex Court ChambersHis strengths are his knowledge of the law, attention to detail, intelligence and ability to think outside the box.
    • Akua Reindorf - CloistersA class act; a quite outstanding junior with the ability to cut to the heart of a matter and a devastating cross-examiner.
    • David Renton - Garden Court ChambersVery competent and knowledgeable as well as very committed.
    • Tom Richards - Blackstone ChambersOn top of the detail, considered and a clear communicator.
    • Jude Shepherd - 42 Bedford RowHer approach is very thorough, her cross-examination is always excellent, and her advice on tactics is always valuable.
    • Niran de Silva - Littleton ChambersReally knows about financial services-related employment work and a pleasure to deal with.
    • Sarah Wilkinson - Blackstone ChambersExceptionally bright barrister, who is always thorough in her case preparation.
    • Victoria Windle - Blackstone ChambersGives robust and objective advice and does not sit on the fence; very responsive and easy to get along with.
    • Will Young - Outer Temple ChambersHe is attentive, efficient, delivers on time and gets on extremely well with clients – showing sympathy to their case.

11KBW is 'one of the best sets for employment law with a broad range of experience' and is 'a very strong set for complex employment law support' as well as 'high-quality, big-ticket cases', according to clients. Seán Jones QC represents the University of Oxford in a high-profile case regarding retirement ages for academics, while Richard Leiper QC acts for the NHS in relation to the monitoring and pay of junior doctors' breaks. John Cavanagh QC, recently appointed a High Court judge in the Queen’s Bench Division, acted for Virgin Atlantic in obtaining an injunction, which prevented a pilots' strike over Christmas and New Year, and was also involved in the important Supreme Court case of Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Trust v Haywood, which ruled that an employee is only legally notified of their redundancy when they have actually read the notification.

'Top-notch setBlackstone Chambers has 'great strength in depth, from the QCs through to the juniors'. Recent case highlights include Paul Goulding QC representing Dyson Group in proceedings brought against its former chief executive, and for IBM in a High Court claim to enforce a non-compete covenant against a former senior employee. Dinah Rose QC acted for Uber in a seminal gig economy case where the Court of Appeal ruled that Uber drivers are workers, and therefore entitled to the national minimum wage and paid annual leave; the ride-sharing company will challenge the ruling in the Supreme Court. In another case concerning employment status, Jane Mulcahy QC successfully defend UK Sport against claims of unfair dismissal, discrimination, victimisation, and detriment following a protected disclosure by Jessica Varnish, a former Great Britain's women's cycling team member - the tribunal found that funded athletes are not employees or workers.

Littleton Chambers is 'a first-rate employment law set' with 'strength and depth of experience from juniors through to leaders in their field' and 'is viewed as the go-to set for complex employment-related work', particularly business protection and restrictive covenants, as well as 'sector specialisms such as sports law and professional disciplinary cases'. In one highlighted instruction, Gavin Mansfield QC acted for insurance broker Arthur J Gallagher in a major team move between sector rivals, successfully obtaining an interim springboard injunction. In a case with reportedly £400m at stake for the care sector, David Reade QC represents the charity in Royal Mencap Society v Tomlinson-Blake, a Court of Appeal test case which concerns if on-call care workers are entitled to be paid the minimum wage while sleeping on site - Unison's appeal will be heard by the Supreme Court in February 2020.

Matrix Chambers has 'a formidable array of talent and expertise' with its members 'offering tremendous strength in employment cases'. James Laddie QC represented the employer in Supreme Court case Egon Zehnder v Tillman, the first employee restraint of trade case to reach the top level of the court system for more than a century. Karon Monaghan QC acted in Gilham v Ministry of Justice, in which the Court of Appeal held that judges are not workers and therefore cannot be covered by protections for whistleblowers. Elsewhere, Thomas Linden QC successfully acted for British Cycling, which was being sued by former track cyclist Jessica Varnish, who was found not to be an employee of the governing body or UK Sport, which funds elite athletes.

Old Square Chambers' 'expertise in employment law issues is second to none and it has good coverage at all levels', say instructing solicitors, who also note how members are 'very knowledgeable about the NHS and the health sector'. Mark Sutton QC represented the appellant in the Agarwal v Cardiff University regarding the scope of the Employment Tribunal's jurisdiction in unpaid wages claims. Among Lord Hendy QC's highlights was the high-profile gig economy case of R (IWGB) v Central Arbitration Committee and RooFoods in which a judicial review was sought on the grounds that denial of the opportunity for Deliveroo couriers, who have been found to not be workers, to bargain collectively is a breach of Article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Cloisters' members are highly regarded for their expert knowledge in all aspects of employment law across a broad range of sectors including financial services, transport, education, government, retail, and technology. The set's members act for both employers and employees, including trade unions. Robin Allen QC and Rachel Crasnow QC acted for part-time judges in O'Brien v Ministry of Justice, a high-value claim which considered discrimination against part-time judges in the calculation of pensions; in November 2018 the Court of Justice of the European Union found in their clients' favour, bringing the 13-year dispute to a close. Elsewhere, Paul Epstein QC represented Birmingham City Council and Tesco in a multimillion-pound mass equal pay disputes.

The 'extremely good' Essex Court Chambers has members who are 'great for complex commercial employment matters'. Andrew Hochhauser QC acted for a former senior banker who had worked for the respondent bank for four decades in a substantial claim for unfair dismissal and disability discrimination. Meanwhile, Daniel Oudkerk QC is instructed by cyber-security company Secarma in a multimillion-pound damages claim and injunctive relief arising out of a poaching raid. Martin Griffiths QC has been appointed a High Court judge in the Queen’s Bench Division.

'Incredibly strong' Devereux is 'a great all-rounder set for employment litigation' with 'strength in depth across their employment practice, including connected areas such as tax and national minimum wage issues', according to instructing solicitors, who also note that chambers are considered a 'go-to set for trade union matters'. Bruce Carr QC was involved in the landmark Timis v Osipov, in which the Court of Appeal, for the first time, found two individual directors liable for whistleblowing-related detriment in a case following a disclosure by a company's CEO surrounding its oil business in Niger. Elsewhere, Akash Nawbatt QC acted for British Airways securing a High Court injunction to prevent pilots going on strike over the summer.

In addition to regularly appearing in the employment tribunal system and the High Court for high-stakes and high-profile work, such as restrictive covenant injunctions, members of Outer Temple Chambers are also involved in significant Court of Appeal and Supreme Court cases. Andrew Short QC is leading Naomi Cunningham and Paul Livingston in Brierley v Asda, representing thousands of shop workers in the largest-ever equal pay claim seen in the private sector; the case sees a large number of in-store employees seeking to use the overwhelmingly male warehouse workers as comparators for their pay.

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