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Tax: Corporate - Leading Silks

Malcolm Gammie QC - One Essex CourtHe is measured and well respected by the Tribunal and HMRC. Incredibly hardworking.
Julian Ghosh QC - One Essex CourtHe is a superb litigator - very good at weighing up the essence of a case and knowing what is the main point to push.
David Goldberg QC - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersHe fully deserves his excellent reputation.
David Milne QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersHe is an outstanding advocate and extremely clear and client focused in his advice work. His opinions are always hugely insightful.
Jonathan Peacock QC - 11 New SquareHe must be the best all-round tax silk going.
Kevin Prosser QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersHe can simplify and get to the core of difficult tax issues.
Philip Baker QC - Field Court Tax ChambersExcellent command of cases, impressive and persuasive oral advocacy.
Timothy Brennan QC - DevereuxHis strengths include very strong legal analysis and excellent strategic thinking.
Felicity Cullen QC - DevereuxProvides consistent, practical commercial advice.
David Ewart QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersHuge technical ability. Very quick to get at the issue.
Jonathan Fisher QC - Red Lion ChambersBoth charming and honest with clients. Quick to grasp a case and incisive in the advice he gives.
Michael Flesch QC - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersVery respected throughout the tax bar.
Michael Gibbon QC - Maitland ChambersAble to get to the heart of a case and focus upon key issues.
Philip Jones QC - Serle CourtAffable and technically knowledge. He is also good at providing realistic timescales.
Jolyon Maugham QC - DevereuxA very clear and logical thinker and persuasive speaker.
Akash Nawbatt QC - DevereuxA popular and long-standing choice for HMRC.
Nicola Shaw QC - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersTruly excellent for appellate work. She has a fantastic grasp of technical issues at UK and European level.
Rupert Baldry QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersRupert is incredibly cool and collected under pressure. He is clear in his advice and works in a collaborative manner. A great advocate in court.
Jonathan Bremner QCOne Essex CourtArguably the leading tax lawyer of his generation. Excellent strategic sense, fearsomely bright, and both a forceful and a polished performer in court.
Jonathan Davey QC - Wilberforce ChambersOne of the best advocates at the Bar and a very impressive leader. Excellent with judges, solicitors and clients. Calm, measured and unflappable, he also has an engaging style of advocacy that is highly persuasive. His written submissions are analytically rigorous and technically strong.
John Gardiner QC - 11 New SquareHugely impressive strategic instincts, and a level of gravitas in his delivery that exceeds anything elsewhere at the tax bar.
Giles Goodfellow QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersHe is imaginative and finds solutions that others have not spotted.
Sam Grodzinski QC - Blackstone ChambersSam is very thorough, has excellent judgment and is the best QC I have worked with in terms of leading a team effectively. He is also an extremely effective advocate.
Amanda Hardy QC - 5 Stone BuildingsVery effective. A fine tax barrister who is great with clients.
Timothy Lyons QC - 39 Essex ChambersIncisive mind; good tactician; excellent grasp of the legal principles involved in a complex piece of litigation.
Hui Ling McCarthy QC - 11 New SquareA ferocious appetite for work - and the knowledge to back it up. A future leader of the tax bar.
David Southern QC - Temple Tax ChambersHighly analytical. Draws on wide range of legal expertise. Quick to understand the underlying commercial and operational issues. Conclusions given are clear and decisive.
Laurent Sykes QC - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersVery responsive; a real problem-solver; commercial; has a deep knowledge of case law.
John Tallon QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersVery approachable and sees all sides of a problem.
Roger Thomas QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersA first-rate mind and very responsive. A real expert in corporate and indirect taxes.
Richard Vallat QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersExceptionally bright and thoughtful, providing practical advice.
Robert Venables QC - Old Square Tax ChambersA very intelligent tax silk.
Patrick Way QC - Field Court Tax ChambersVery efficient and responsive.

Tax: VAT - Leading Silks

Roderick Cordara QC - Essex Court Chambers He has a really impressive and in depth knowledge of VAT from his years at the Bar. He is a brilliant advocate, always extremely professional and a pleasure to appear against.
Sam Grodzinski QC - Blackstone ChambersSam is very thorough, has excellent judgment and is the best QC I have worked with in terms of leading a team effectively. He is also an extremely effective advocate.
Melanie Hall QC - Monckton ChambersShe is an excellent silk; has the ear of the judge and is forensically charming.
Andrew Hitchmough QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersHis technical abilities are first-rate and he is very approachable.
David Milne QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersHe is an outstanding advocate and extremely clear and client focused in his advice work. His opinions are always hugely insightful.
Jonathan Peacock QC - 11 New SquareHe must be the best all-round tax silk going.
Nicola Shaw QC - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersTruly excellent for appellate work. She has a fantastic grasp of technical issues at UK and European level.
Kieron Beal QC - Blackstone ChambersTechnically excellent across VAT, indirect taxes, wider EU law, and HMRC powers.
Felicity Cullen QC - DevereuxProvides consistent, practical commercial advice.
David Ewart QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersHuge technical ability. Very quick to get at the issue.
Nigel Pleming QC - 39 Essex ChambersCalm under pressure, unflappable, suave, and extremely affable.
Kevin Prosser QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersHe can simplify and get to the core of difficult tax issues.
David Scorey QC - Essex Court ChambersHe is excellent and presents cases economically and effectively in a way which most judges find attractive.
Rupert Baldry QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersRupert is incredibly cool and collected under pressure. He is clear in his advice and works in a collaborative manner. A great advocate in court.
James Eadie QC - Blackstone ChambersA phenomenal silk.
Francis Fitzpatrick QC - 11 New SquareHe is a genuine tax litigator and therefore he can also advise both on the technical issues and also how the matter may be perceived by the court.
Julian Ghosh QC - One Essex CourtHe is a superb litigator - very good at weighing up the essence of a case and knowing what is the main point to push.
Hui Ling McCarthy QC - 11 New SquareA ferocious appetite for work - and the knowledge to back it up. A future leader of the tax bar.
Philip Moser QC - Monckton ChambersHe is extremely knowledgeable.
Owain Thomas QC - 1 Crown Office RowExtremely able. A tough opponent. Always on top of the papers. Extremely knowledgeable on indirect tax matters. An experienced litigator. Fights hard for his client.
Roger Thomas QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersA first-rate mind and very responsive. A real expert in corporate and indirect taxes.
Jeremy Benson QC - Red Lion ChambersAn exceptional advocate.
Michael Conlon QC - Temple Tax ChambersA pleasure to work with on complex VAT cases.
Timothy Lyons QC - 39 Essex ChambersIncisive mind; good tactician; excellent grasp of the legal principles involved in a complex piece of litigation.
Jern-Fei Ng QC - 7BRHas an excellent reputation for VAT-related work.
George Peretz QC - Monckton ChambersHe has a great mind and the ability to communicate complex issues to lay clients in a manner they can understand.
Sarabjit Singh QC - 1 Crown Office RowSarabjit is hard working and has an attention to detail. He is a punchy advocate which can be very effective for some tribunals.
David Southern QC - Temple Tax ChambersHighly analytical. Draws on wide range of legal expertise. Quick to understand the underlying commercial and operational issues. Conclusions given are clear and decisive.
Jonathan Swift QC - 11KBWGreat on his feet and on paper, he has very strong attention to detail.
Richard Vallat QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersExceptionally bright and thoughtful, providing practical advice.

2021 Silks

Michael Jones QC - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersA brilliant tax barrister and one of the brightest people I have ever worked with.
Elizabeth Wilson QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersVery bright and capable. She is extremely diligent and thorough. She had a fine analytical mind and writes very clearly.

Tax: Corporate - 2019 Silks

Aparna Nathan QC - DevereuxVery eloquent and particularly good at handling offshore matters.
James Rivett QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersHe is a tenacious litigator and someone who pursues his case with vigour.
David Yates QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersExcellent advocate who is able to read the court well, technically excellent and great tactically, too.

Tax: VAT - 2019 Silks

Valentina Sloane QC - Monckton ChambersVery user friendly with clients and has a great grasp of the detail when evidence is complex.
David Yates QC - Pump Court Tax ChambersExcellent advocate who is able to read the court well, technically excellent and great tactically, too.

Tax: VAT - 2020 Silks

Eleni Mitrophanous QC - Matrix ChambersShe is industrious, focussed and enthusiastic. She has no weaknesses.

Tax: Corporate - Leading Juniors

Conrad McDonnell - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersHe has a very strong attention to detail and superb technical understanding of the law.
Jeremy Woolf - Pump Court Tax ChambersHis knowledge and practical experience in both UK and offshore matters are extensive and highly valuable.
Imran Afzal - Field Court Tax ChambersVery clever; can unravel the most complex of legal knots; technically excellent.
Barrie Akin - DevereuxApproachable, commercially aware and has a collaborative approach.
Kate Balmer - DevereuxA great advocate who is diligent, sharp and hard-working.
John Brinsmead-Stockham - 11 New SquareExtremely bright and capable. A first class advocate; combines analytical ability with commercial insight.
Thomas Chacko - Pump Court Tax ChambersHe is a patient professional who leaves no stones unturned.
Keith Gordon - Temple Tax ChambersBrilliant, hard-working and is always willing to go the extra mile to get the best result. A great barrister to have on your side who will always work super-hard for you.
James Henderson - Pump Court Tax ChambersHe is resourceful and resilient in defending his clients’ interests.
Alun James - Temple Tax ChambersCourteous and efficient, he gets on well with clients.
Marika Lemos - DevereuxShe has excellent client handling skills and is building a fantastic litigation practice. She is a clear, fluent and excellent advocate.
Ximena Montes Manzano - Temple Tax ChambersShe is very approachable and identifies the issues immediately and then prepares a fully considered response.
Oliver Marre - 5 Stone BuildingsExcellent at legal analysis, a good manner with clients and he is highly responsive.
Nikhil Mehta - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersHe provides wise counsel and commercial common sense. His background in private practice as a solicitor also allows him to understand the complexities and wider legal considerations of commercial transactions and arrangements.
Rory Mullan - Old Square Tax ChambersWrites opinions well and great to work with.
Rebecca Murray - DevereuxVery clear in her advice and very easy to work with.
Philip Ridgway - Temple Tax ChambersPhilip is technically excellent, but as, if not more importantly, is creative, commercial and extremely practical. He is prepared to delve into the detail of the practical application of any advice that he gives.
Jonathan Schwarz - Temple Tax ChambersHas exceptional knowledge and expertise in international tax and treaty issues. He always provides a thoughtful and balanced approach to difficult and complex issues - often providing truly novel solutions.
Michael Sherry - Temple Tax ChambersHe is very approachable and able to explain complex matters clearly to clients.
Patrick Soares - Field Court Tax ChambersA go-to tax barrister.
Christopher Stone - DevereuxHe is hard-working and has an excellent grasp of the law.
Kelly Stricklin-Coutinho - 39 Essex ChambersA promising junior barrister with great potential.
Michael Thomas - Pump Court Tax ChambersHis written opinions are carefully considered and he is not afraid to dissuade clients from appealing when he considers a case to be particularly problematic.
Peter Vaines - Field Court Tax ChambersHe is rigorous, thorough and precise, displays an intuitive understanding of the matters referred to him and turns work around very quickly.
Zizhen Yang - Pump Court Tax ChambersTechnically strong and very hard working.

Tax: VAT Leading Juniors

Raymond Hill - Monckton ChambersHe is very calm under pressure and an excellent team player.
Marika Lemos - DevereuxShe has excellent client handling skills and is building a fantastic litigation practice. She is a clear, fluent and excellent advocate.
Conrad McDonnell - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersHe has a very strong attention to detail and superb technical understanding of the law.
Barrie Akin - DevereuxApproachable, commercially aware and has a collaborative approach.
John Brinsmead-Stockham - 11 New SquareExtremely bright and capable. A first class advocate; combines analytical ability with commercial insight.
Edward Brown - Essex Court ChambersPutting aside his disarming modesty, he is completely unflappable and incredibly hard working. Anyone paying for him is getting the ability and judgment of a silk for the price of a junior.
Timothy Brown Temple Tax Chambers ‘Has the ability to grasp difficult situations and find a solution which everyone understands.
Michael Firth - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersHe explains complex issues well and presents his arguments in a clear and concise fashion.
Lyndsey Frawley - Temple Tax ChambersFights hard for her clients and is a pleasure to work with. She is extremely efficient and on top of her brief and a very able advocate.
James Henderson - Pump Court Tax ChambersHe is resourceful and resilient in defending his clients’ interests.
Georgia Hicks - DevereuxA very articulate advocate in court.
Peter Mantle - Monckton ChambersHe is able to explain complex ideas in a straightforward way that clients like. He is also willing to adopt challenging arguments if he believes in the cause.
Frank Mitchell - Monckton ChambersHe considers all angles on a matter which encourages an open and healthy debate.
Michael Ripley - 11 New SquareHis strengths are being able to understand highly technical points and also having a good bedside manner. Always makes himself available.
Jeremy White - Pump Court Tax ChambersJeremy is the pre-eminent authority on customs and excise duty issues in the UK. His knowledge is unrivalled.
Zizhen Yang - Pump Court Tax ChambersTechnically strong and very hard working.
Kate Balmer - DevereuxA great advocate who is diligent, sharp and hard-working.
Barbara Belgrano - Pump Court Tax ChambersAn exceptionally bright and able junior. She has huge technical ability, a terrific eye for detail, drafts with precision and is exceptionally diligent and focused. She is everything that one would wish to see in a junior barrister.
Thomas Chacko - Pump Court Tax ChambersHe is a patient professional who leaves no stones unturned.
Sadiya Choudhury - Pump Court Tax ChambersAn extremely effective adviser who is attentive to client needs and very understanding of the way in which their businesses work.
Oliver Conolly - Pump Court Tax ChambersHighly intelligent with a very organised approach.
Andrew Legg - Essex Court ChambersHe is industrious yet unflappable. Has good attention to detail and knowledge of public and EU law. His particular skill is being able to bring a commercial understanding to tax disputes and convey that context to the tribunal.
Andrew Macnab - Monckton ChambersAndrew has all the qualities needed from a junior barrister in this area. He is imaginative, looking for solutions from different angles, and finding them. Well respected by both HMRC and taxpayers.
Isabel McArdle - 1 Crown Office RowIsabel is exceptionally thorough and diligent. She has excellent forensic cross-examination skills. She is always very well-prepared and argues her points robustly and fairly.
Brendan McGurk - Monckton ChambersHe is extremely impressive on his feet, delivering powerful speeches and being unfazed by difficult and probing questions from the judiciary.
Rebecca Murray - DevereuxVery clear in her advice and very easy to work with.
Laura Poots - Pump Court Tax ChambersA great legal mind. Takes a commercial approach to tax problems.
Simon Pritchard - Blackstone ChambersHe is a hard worker and a strong team player for any counsel team.
Sebastian Purnell - DevereuxVery practical, pragmatic, and excellent when engaging with clients.
Kelly Stricklin-Coutinho - 39 Essex ChambersA promising junior barrister with great potential.
Michael Thomas - Pump Court Tax ChambersHis written opinions are carefully considered and he is not afraid to dissuade clients from appealing when he considers a case to be particularly problematic.
Jeremy Woolf - Pump Court Tax ChambersHis knowledge and practical experience in both UK and offshore matters are extensive and highly valuable.

Tax: Corporate - Rising Stars

Laura Inglis - Gray's Inn Tax ChambersAble to grasp highly complex issues and provide clear explanations of tax law. Very thorough and diligent. She has a highly incisive intelligence. Really hard worker, technically excellent, very approachable.

Tax: corporate and VAT/indirect tax in London Bar

11 New Square

11 New Square is entirely focused on tax law, comprising a strong set of barristers who regularly handle high-value advisory work and litigation in key tax appeals. 'Excellent in oral argument and quick on his feet',  Jonathan Peacock represented News Corp UK in a test-case against HMRC on the application of VAT zero-rating to digital newspapers. Hui Ling McCarthy QC continues to develop her silk practice and is leading the team for the Good Law Project in its challenge to Uber's VAT accounting. Also of note, Michael Ripley successfully represented SSE Generations against the revenue in a dispute over the amount of tax relief available for the expenditure in the construction of a hydro-electric power station in the Highlands.

39 Essex Chambers

39 Essex Chambers is most noted for VAT and indirect tax work, although barristers are also instructed on contentious corporate tax. Nigel Pleming QC is often instructed by HMRC for advisory work, focusing on tax avoidance issues. Kelly Stricklin-Coutinho is a senior junior with EU and international tax expertise, and currently representing the taxpayer in Beebombs Ltd v HMRC, a case concerning the VAT treatment of the client's product, and whether a bee counts as an animal within the meaning in the 1994 VAT Act.

Blackstone Chambers

Blackstone Chambers is 'an outstanding set', housing an impressive group of indirect tax barristers. Most noted for his VAT practice, Sam Grodzinski QC is also strong for corporate tax, acting for Glencore in diverted profits tax case Glencore v HMRCKieron Beal QC is another name to note, with a practice spanning EU, competition, public and tax law.

Devereux

Devereux is 'a good set with great strength in depth' has a sophisticated revenue-side practice, which sits alongside the strong taxpayer-side instructions in relation to both direct and indirect tax. Employment taxes are a major area of expertise for many members, with Timothy Brennan QC handling a high-level employment status case. Akash Nawbatt QC, who is instructed by HMRC and taxpayers, represented the revenue in Credit Suisse v HMRC, relating to the one-off bank payroll tax following the 2008 financial crisis. Aparna Nathan QC continues to represent the revenue in a number of high-profile cases including Walewski v HMRC, the first litigation on the mixed membership rules applying to LLPs.

Essex Court Chambers

With 'an all-star team', Essex Court Chambers is a leading light for contentious VAT. In addition to VAT litigation, members have vast experience in matters involving environmental taxation, customs duty and other aspects of indirect tax. Roderick Cordara QC is admitted to practice in England and Wales and Australia, and often appears in the European Court of Justice on tax-related matters. In a recent highlight, he acted for American Express against HMRC in a case concerning how Amex cards work in relation to merchants and cardholders. Edward Brown focuses on VAT and customs duty, acting for and against the revenue; he appeared for News UK in its VAT dispute with HMRC concerning the treatment of digital media. David Scorey QC acted for an NHS foundation trust in The Queen (on application of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust) v The Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs, successfully arguing that it was eligible for a recovery for the input tax on its car leasing scheme.

Field Court Tax Chambers

'Well known for tax advocacy and a commercial approach', Field Court Tax Chambers has a dynamic practice that covers the entirety of UK tax law, double taxation and tax-related human rights law, from advisory and litigation perspectives. Head of chambers Patrick Soares has an active advisory practice in relation to the structuring of major land transactions. In Andrew Davies & others v HMRCPatrick Way QC represented the taxpayer in relation to an application of a transfer of assets abroad in the context of pensions. Imran Afzal, who is on the treasury B panel, represented the Mauritius revenue authority in Avago Technologies Trading Ltd v Mauritius Revenue Authority, a matter concerning the transfer pricing of cross-border payments for IP rights.

GRAY'S INN TAX CHAMBERS

'Well-known and respected, with strength in depth', Gray's Inn Tax Chambers is home to barristers focusing on all areas of direct and indirect tax, as well as private client work. Members act for both the revenue and taxpayer before the UK courts, but also have experience in Hong Kong. Litigation is a key pillar of chambers' work, but there is also a substantial advisory practice. 'Powerful advocateNicola Shaw QC has a broad contentious tax practice that extends to judicial review. Laurent Sykes QC splits his time between advisory work and litigation, assisting clients with employment, corporate and business tax issues. Nikhil Mehta not only has decades of experience of UK and Indian taxation but also in multinational tax matters generally. Rising star Laura Inglis regularly appears before the high court and first-tier tribunal, and is developing an increasingly impressive contentious corporate tax practice.

Monckton Chambers

Indirect tax is a speciality of the 'very smoothly runMonckton Chambers, which houses impressive advocates who regularly act for taxpayers and the revenue. Melanie Hall QC continues to act in cutting-edge cases, and successfully represented SAW Education before the Supreme Court in SAE Education Ltd v Commissioners of Revenue and Customs, a case clarifying tax law on what is a college or university. Valentina Sloane QC, who specialises in the intersection between EU law, tax, and procurement, represented FMX at the Supreme Court in HMRC v FMX, a case on customs duties and limitation periods. Senior junior Peter Mantle has a strong indirect tax practice and was recently re-appointed to the treasury A panel.

Pump Court Tax Chambers

Pump Court Tax Chambers, 'a fantastic set and which never fails to deliver',  stands out for its deep expertise in VAT and other indirect taxes, handling high-profile cases in relation to landfill, and gaming taxes. Highlights for Roger Thomas QC included Zipvit v HMRC, where he represented the claimant, as a trade customer of Royal Mail, in the Supreme Court to recover input tax on supplies made over a 30-year period. Amid a prolific year, Andrew Hitchmough QC led Barbara Belgrano in Hastings Insurance Service Ltd v HMRC, successfully arguing for the taxpayer that VAT can be reclaimed on insurance policies supplied from Gibraltar. Also of note, Zizhen Yang is developing a strong reputation in the indirect tax world.

Temple Tax Chambers

Temple Tax Chambers is 'an excellent set with efficient, approachable, helpful clerks'. Members are instructed on direct and indirect, contentious and non-contentious matters, most notably in relation to corporate and employment tax. Head of chambers Alun James and Michael Sherry are recommended for their corporate tax advisory practices, while Jonathan Schwarz stands out for international tax. In the lower tribunal case of Albatel Ltd v HMRCKeith Gordon successfully represented Scottish television presenter and journalist Lorraine Kelly in a high-profile £1.2m case concerning IR35 rules, specifically, whether Kelly was self-employed or an employee of ITV.