Firms To Watch: Civil liberties and human rights

Farleys Solicitors LLP offers a specialist inquest and human rights practice, with team head Kelly Darlington overseeing a practice that regularly handles inquests into deaths in prison, police custody and health institutions.
In May 2023, Good Law Practice hired former ITN Solicitors civil liberties and human rights partner Lochlinn Parker. Parker specialises in protest and public order matters, and is experienced misconduct proceedings, civil claims, inquests and judicial reviews.
Pogust Goodhead is developing an exceptional reputation for its expertise handling high-value international human rights and environmental group litigations.

Civil liberties and human rights in London

Bhatt Murphy

Singled out by a client as ‘the number one firm in civil liberties and human rights litigation’, Bhatt Murphy is renowned for its prowess in core areas such as immigration detention, police and prison law, and security services work. Handling a significant number of precedent-setting cases both domestically and before the ECtHR, the team acts for individuals in civil compensation claims, and NGOs intervening in judicial review proceedings. Immigration specialist Janet Farrell is developing a particularly focus on women’s rights, while Carolynn Gallwey specialises in civil actions and complaints against the police, as well as inquests into deaths arising from detention. Tony Murphy is highly regarded for his expertise securing accountability against state agents. Jane Ryan is recognised as an expert in prison law and regularly represents prisoners in Parole Board proceedings. Shamik Dutta has developed a strong specialism in breach of privacy matters, pursuing a number of judicial reviews relating to unlawful surveillance and data retention. Mark Scott and founding member Raju Bhatt remain key contacts.

Other key lawyers:

Raju Bhatt; Carolynn Gallwey; Tony Murphy; Mark Scott; Jane Ryan; Janet Farrell; Michael Oswald; Sophie Naftalin; Simon Creighton


‘Bhatt Murphy are the number one civil liberties firm in the country. This is incontrovertible.’

‘Bhatt Murphy are in my view the number one firm in civil liberties and human rights litigation. They consistently innovate and get great results for their clients.’

‘The breadth and depth of the quality of Bhatt Murphy solicitors is unparalleled and runs from the most senior partners through to its trainees and associates.’

Work highlights

  • Represented former detainees at the public inquiry into the Brook House Immigration Removal Centre.
  • Acting for multiple organisations in the Covid-19 public inquiry.
  • Acted for a family in an inquest relating to domestic abuse leading to suicide.

Bindmans LLP

Offering a ‘cutting edge’ practice, Bindmans LLP commands a strong reputation in immigration work and actions against the police and state, as well as international work spanning torture and abuse claims, freedom of assembly matters and victims’ rights in criminal trials. The vastly experienced John Halford acts for a broad range of clients including individuals, NGOs and unions, while Jules Carey regularly handles matters for journalists, MPs and activists. Tayab Ali is seen as a leading authority on counter-terrorism law, while Anna Thwaites is highly regarded for her inquests expertise. Shirin Marker is building an excellent reputation for representing victims of trafficking, torture and individuals deprived of their British citizenship, while veteran Jamie Potter stepped down from the firm in 2022.

Practice head(s):

Tayab Ali; Jules Carey; Kate Goold; John Halford; Paul Ridge

Other key lawyers:

Anna Thwaites; Theodora Middleton; Shirin Marker; Rachel Harger


‘The Bindmans civil liberties and human rights practice is cutting edge and very much at the forefront of the market. The practitioners are highly experienced and some of the best in the business, and the associates are universally brilliant.’

‘Shirin Marker really is one to watch. Her style is understated but she is extremely intelligent and has the strategic nous of a practitioner with many more years of experience.’

‘Rachel Harger handles complex and high-profile cases with ease; highly astute and sharp practitioner. Commands respect from clients, and is on top of both the law and the running of the case.’

‘Bindmans are an outstanding team with exceptional lawyers at all levels. They are highly experienced; approachable; committed and collaborative.’

‘Brilliant, inventive lawyers who really care about their clients.’

‘Bindmans’ civil liberties and human rights team is standout in the field. Consistently at the top of their game. Everyone in the team is a leader.’

Key clients

Bereaved, Survivors and Residents (BSRs) of the Grenfell Tower Fire

‘Reclaim these Streets’, a group dedicated to women’s safety (Anna Birley, Jessica Leigh, Henna Shah, and Jamie Klingler)

Muriel Maguire: Mother of Jackie, a patient who died due to failures in her medical care

The family of Christopher Nota

Core Participants to the Undercover Policing Inquiry

Kingsley Kanu

Individuals deprived of their British citizenship

Amna Bibi & Ors

The Death of Yusuf Mahmud Ahmed

International Centre of Justice for Palestinians

Anton Abu Akleh & Shatha Hanaysha, Ali Samoudi and others

Dr Mohammed Salman Butt

Big Brother Watch

Work highlights

  • Appealing a High Court ruling in relation to a significant human rights case centred on Nnamdi Kanu, the British national leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, a group which calls for self-determination for Biafra Land.
  • Representing over 200 bereaved, survivors and residents in the Grenfell Tower inquiry.

Deighton Pierce Glynn

With a strong reputation for handling cases with an international aspect, Deighton Pierce Glynn fields a ‘leading team in the field of civil liberties and human rights’; the group handles a large number of complex inquests related to deaths in prison and police custody, as well as having assisting victims of modern slavery and human trafficking. Jo Eggleton co-leads the team and has vast experience bringing Article 2 claims against prisons, while co-head Sarah Ricca’s work focuses primarily on discrimination law, including police responses to domestic violence and policing of minority communities. Jane Deighton is also a pioneer in the field of race discrimination claims against the police, with managing partner Polly Glynn having recently been asked to speak at the Joint Committee on Human Rights in relation to hotel accommodation for migrants. Sue Willman is highly skilled in international human rights challenges, while Ugo Hayter has recently represented victims of trafficking threatened with deportation to Rwanda. Sasha Rozansky recently represented a victim of domestic and sexual abuse who successfully challenged a local authority’s decision to grant licences to an unlimited number of strip clubs, and Zubier Yazdaniis at the forefront of advancing human rights law’. Gus Silverman is a key new arrival from Irwin Mitchell.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Ricca; Jo Eggleton

Other key lawyers:

Polly Glynn; Sue Willman; Sasha Rozansky; Clare Hayes; Emily Soothill; Jane Deighton; Lorna Barron; Zubier Yazdani; Gus Silverman; Nkiru Okafor


‘Strategic litigation with a human rights commitment.’

‘Zubier Yazdani is accessible, highly knowledgeable and a pleasure to work with. His commitment to his clients and cases is evident, and his ability to get across the facts and law of each case is most impressive.’

‘Zubier Yazdani is at the forefront of the advancement of human rights law in different fields of law. He is a driving force for good by generating creative and novel points of law founded on Convention rights and domestic law.’

Key clients

Denise Johnson

Family of Taras Nykolyn



Fabrice Fansu Kone

Undercover Policing Inquiry (Adams family, Dwayne Brookes, Ken Livingstone)

Family of Cherylee Shennan

Tallan Bent

Leigh Day

Renowned for its considerable breadth of expertise across the spectrum of human rights issues, Leigh Day continues to represent a wide variety of individuals, NGOs and charities in ground-breaking cases. The practice has also established a stellar inquests reputation, handling a large number of Article 2 claims concerning deaths of children and young people. Jamie Beagent oversees a department which focuses primarily on the environment, and the detention and welfare of immigrants and asylum seekers. International and group litigation lead Richard Meeran is a pioneer regarding cases involving UK-domiciled multinationals, while Sapna Malik has a wide caseload of international claims. Daniel Leader’s practice focuses on business and human rights, founding member Sean Humber remains a key contact, and senior associate Andrew Lord continues to represent survivors of abuse in childhood.

Practice head(s):

Jamie Beagent; Richard Meeran

Other key lawyers:

Daniel Leader; Andrew Lord; Sean Humber; Alison Millar; Sapna Malik; Tessa Gregory; Waleed Sheikh; Stephanie Hill; Yvonne Kestler


‘Leigh Day has vast experience in these areas and has an open style for discussing innovations and collaborations, and is very forward looking. While being focused on the issues at hand in the law, they understand the “people” skills also and attribute time to finding the best solutions for the situation at hand.’

‘A superb team of innovative, alert, knowledgeable and caring lawyers and assistants. They are able to consider many new ways of dealing with all legal issues to support their clients, including in all forms of litigation and alternative dispute settlement such as mediation.’

‘They are all highly knowledgeable, hard working and very engaging. The stand-out practitioners are Daniel Leader and Richard Meeran.’

Work highlights

  • Acting for the family of Molly Russell, who died having viewed images on social media depicting self-harm, suicide and depression-related content, at inquest.
  • Acting for a number of individuals who suffered severe physical assaults at the hands of security guards working employed in British multinationals’ international operations abroad.
  • Acting for the families of civilians killed by British Special Forces in Afghanistan in nightraids in the period 2010-13 in the Independent Inquiry Relating to Afghanistan.

Hickman & Rose

The ‘brilliant’ civil liberties and human rights team at Hickman & Rose has ‘an outstanding reputation for achieving fantastic results for clients’, with specialist expertise representing victims of serious abuses of power by the police and other detaining authorities. Practice head Daniel Machover specialises in human rights cases arising from failures in the criminal justice system, and his international expertise places him at the forefront of efforts to establish universal criminal jurisdiction. Helen Stone and Kate Maynard are both highly respected in the field of deaths in prison, police custody and immigration detention, while Stefano Ruis is noted for his expertise in bringing claims against the state.

Practice head(s):

Daniel Machover

Other key lawyers:

Stefano Ruis; Kate Maynard; Helen Stone; Toby Wilton


‘They are brilliant for very ‘big’ issues within human rights.’

‘Very capable and thorough; things are carefully considered and documented.’

‘Very strong, client-focused team, with strength at all levels.’

‘Stefano Ruis is superb; sensitive in handling clients, and determined and effective in pursuing their interests.’

‘Daniel Machover is an excellent litigator, always going ‘the extra mile’ for his clients.’

‘The civil liberties team at Hickman & Rose is second to none. It has long had an outstanding reputation for achieving fantastic results for clients, across a range of areas. The team is relatively small but the quality of every member is extremely high. There is simply not a weak link.’

‘Daniel Machover, Stefano Ruis and Kate Maynard have long had stellar reputations in the field. They are committed, fiercely intelligent and extremely thorough. Helen Stone was made partner more recently, but will no doubt join them at the top of the field in years to come.’

‘Hickman & Rose’s civil liberties team are notable for their combination of leading senior practitioners and highly talented associates trained in the same mould of providing high quality advice with a high level of commitment and sensitivity to their clients’ needs.’

Key clients

Helen Lumuanganu (mother of Chris Kaba)

Yasmin Sooka

Louise Grennan

Families of individuals who died in HMP Wormwood Scrubs

Grenfell Tower Inquiry cases

Grenfell Tower civil claims

UCPI core participants

The family of Thomas Orchard

Work highlights

  • Represented the family of Chris Kaba in relation to his shooting in September 2022 and secured a homicide investigation into his death.
  • Representing several victims of the Grenfell Tower fire in various stages of the public inquiry, and in civil claims in the High Court.
  • Representing two groups of black men who were arrested on the underground and fitted up and sent to prison in the early 1970s by a rogue unit of British Transport Police officers in compensation claims under the Ministry of Justice Miscarriage of Justice Scheme.

Hodge Jones & Allen

Hodge Jones & Allen has established itself as a leader in the field of protest law, regularly representing those wrongfully arrested and mistreated by police whilst exercising their Article 11 rights; the team's 'expertise and passion in this field are truly outstanding'. Practice head Susie Labinjoh is a key figure in this regard, handling a multitude of civil actions against the police and prison services every year. She is strongly supported by Jocelyn Cockburn, whose specialist knowledge relating to deaths in custody means she regularly represents bereaved families during inquests.

Practice head(s):

Susie Labinjoh

Other key lawyers:

Jocelyn Cockburn; Alice Hardy; Nancy Collins; Gimhani Eriyagolla; Sasha Barton; Sarah Flanagan


‘Hodge Jones & Allen’s expertise and passion in this field are truly outstanding. Their comprehensive approach, combined with their deep understanding of the legal complexities involved, allows them to deliver impactful representation.’

‘The team at Hodge Jones & Allen, led by standout partners and associates, consistently demonstrates professionalism, compassion, and an unwavering dedication to pursuing justice.’

‘Susie Labinjoh is an exceptional solicitor known for her relentless dedication to protecting individual rights. With sharp legal acumen and a deep understanding of the social context, she empowers clients and challenges the status quo.’

‘An amazing civil liberties and human rights team, from the most junior team members up to the most senior of partners.’

‘Susie Labinjoh is one of the most highly respected civil liberties and human rights solicitors. She really fights for her clients and achieves some excellent results.

‘Nancy Collins and her team empowered me to be able to pursue my case. They are sensitive, validating, patient, and have always made me feel understood and considered.’

‘HJA combines one of the strongest reputations for civil liberties work of any UK firm with an outstanding client service in every single case. It has achieved an impressive size without any sacrifice in quality by its growth, which is testament to its in-house training and rigorous recruitment standard.’

‘Alice Hardy is very knowledgeable in civil actions arising from events that have related inquests or investigations involving state authorities and police services. She can provide accurate and expert advice on the procedural, tactical and legal field and the best steps to take in advancing a claim and obtains excellent results in both negotiation and litigation.’

Key clients

Ella Adoo Kissi Debrah

Core Participants in the Grenfell Tower Inquiry

Extinction Rebellion

Michelle Jones

Undercover Policing Inquiry – International Solidarity Movement & Others

GMI & Ors

Hillsborough families

Clive Price and Ors

Kings College Students


Jessica Branch and Caspar Hughes

Kitanna Traylor

Work highlights

  • Representing over 40 core participants at the Grenfell Tower inquiry.
  • Representing over 100 core participants at the UCPI and in associated criminal and civil cases.

Howard Kennedy LLP

Howard Kennedy LLP utilises its expertise in media law to advise on novel human rights issues that walk the tightrope between the right to free speech and privacy, handling a number of ground-breaking cases with both domestic and international significance. Practice head Mark Stephens CBE commands an exceptional reputation in this field, having regularly appeared before the ECtHR, the Privy Council and the UN Committee of Human Rights. Elizabeth Morley is another key contact, who, as well as handling cases relating to the ECHR Article 8 and 10 balance, advises clients on other complex issues, such as the right to a fair trial.

Practice head(s):

Mark Stephens CBE

Other key lawyers:

Elizabeth Morley


‘Expert, practical, trusted, client-focused advice.’

‘Mark Stephens CBE – huge breadth and depth of knowledge, very well connected to specialist barristers and foreign lawyers where needed to advance clients’ cases, provides strategically thoughtful, pragmatic and creative advice.’

‘Elizabeth Morley is highly knowledgable, reliable, responsive and gives practical advice.’

Key clients

The family of Christopher Allen

Work highlights

  • Representing the family of Christopher Allen, a journalist killed whilst reporting from South Sudan in 2017, whose death has never been officially investigated.

Irwin Mitchell

An excellent team with real strength in depth’, Irwin Mitchell offers nationally recognised expertise in human rights, inquests and discrimination law, with crossover expertise in health and social welfare work and data protection law. Practice head Yogi Amin has over two decades of experience in the field, having previously handled successful cases before the Supreme Court, while Angela Jackman KC regularly represents major charities and NGOs.Fiona McGhie, who was promoted to partner in May 2023, is well versed in bringing claims under the Human Rights Act.

Practice head(s):

Yogi Amin

Other key lawyers:

Fiona McGhie; Juliet Spender; Angela Jackman KC; Andrew Arthur


‘Excellent team with real strength in depth.’

‘Strong commitment to clients and excellent legal skills, routinely obtain results for vulnerable clients.’

‘Juliet Spender is empathetic with sound judgement; excellent negotiator and litigtator.’

‘Irwin Mitchell have a great reputation in this area.’

‘The team’s commitment to obtaining the best result for their client is second to none. They have a collaborative style of working which is attractive and efficient.’

‘The team has a real strength of experience across the field and are fearless in pushing their cases forward.’

Key clients

HD and Others v Chief Constable of Wiltshire Police

Dr Robert Abrahart

Lesley Davison

Trevor Pilgrim

Lee Guy and others

Family of Sali Byberi

Work highlights

  • Acted for Dr Robert Abrahart in a successful civil action for disability discrimination against the University of Bristol arising from the suicide of his daughter, Natasha Abrahart.
  • Acted for four victims of child abuse arising out of police failings in an earlier investigation into the perpetrator.
  • Acted for a vulnerable adult in a claim for unlawful deprivation of liberty, which settled for £355,000.

McCue Jury & Partners

McCue Jury & Partners has a well established reputation for its commitment to human rights, victim-led group actions and public interest litigation, and in recent highlights has provided human rights advice to the Ukrainian government since it was illegally invaded in February 2023. Jason McCue and Matthew Jury jointly head the practice; the former regularly represents heads of state, governments, NGOs and international organisations on an array of human rights issues, while the latter brings an abundance of experience acting for victims of terrorism in civil prosecutions both in the UK and the US to the team.

Practice head(s):

Jason McCue; Matthew Jury


‘Potential clients would highly rate the approachability combined with professionalism of the McCue Jury & Partners team.’

‘Matthew Jury is committed to seeing justice brought about and works tirelessly with clients to ensure this outcome.’

‘This is a niche boutique firm with a solicitor absolutely committed to his clients. Matthew Jury has fantastic client care and they feel really supported by him. He very often acts for those who do not otherwise have the opportunity to bring claims and crowd funds for the costs so that they can achieve justice. You would never feel let down by Matthew – he is second to none.’

‘McCue Jury & Partners had an outstanding approach to my case, setting themselves apart from other law firms. Their depth of knowledge in the specific area of law for my case was extensive, and that expertise inspired much-needed confidence during a challenging time. Each partner and associate I interacted with was not just technically proficient, but also accessible, prompt, and reliable in their communication.’

‘One of the most impressive aspects of working with McCue Jury & Partners is the level of care and personal attention each team member brings to the table. Their lawyers are not just professionals delivering legal services; they are partners who take a deep, personal interest in your case and your wellbeing.’

‘Strong commitment to clients, unique in the market for this type of work.’

Key clients

Ali Hamza

Victims of Russian invasion of Ukraine v. Wagner Group & Prigozhin

Eliot Higgins of Bellingcat


British Army Veterans at inquest in Northern Ireland

Dirk Campbell

Hyde Park Justice Campaign

Ian Baum

Innocent Victims of Terror

John Murray

Rohingya victims of Genocide

Sarah Jane Young

Syrian victims of Al-Nusra Front

Ukrainian Government

Victims of Libya Sponsored IRA Terrorism

Whistleblower Aid

Work highlights

  • Representing victims and survivors of the Rohingya genocide by Myanmar’s military junta in a civil action against Meta who, it is alleged, recklessly and/or negligently enabled their suffering by allowing material inciting violence against the Rohingya to proliferate on its platform.
  • Representing victims of IRA attacks from 1972 to 1996 in a civil action against Gerry Adams, the alleged IRA leader and former President of Sinn Fein.
  • Representing Ukrainian refugees who fled to the UK in a civil action against Yevgeny Prigozhin, the founder of the Wagner Group, and the Wagner Group itself.

Simons Muirhead Burton

Simons Muirhead Burton is best known for fielding ‘exceptional lawyers with total dedication to saving clients from execution and promoting the abolition of the death penalty‘. The practice is headed up by Parvais Jabbar MBE and Saul Lehrfreund MBE, who jointly established The Death Penalty Project, a ‘unique institution that represents clients on death row in many primary Commonwealth countries‘. Between them, the duo also have extensive experience representing prisoners before constitutional proceedings and international tribunals, and taking on appellate work before the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, with special reference to death row prisoners.

Practice head(s):

Parvais Jabbar MBE; Saul Lehrfreund MBE

Other key lawyers:

Abdul Varachhia; Peter Weiss


‘Saul Lehrfreund and Parvais Jabbar are peerless in their field of criminal appeals, particularly death row cases, raising important issues of constitutional law and international human rights law.’

‘I work with the team in the Death Penalty Project on research, engagement and policy in countries around the world that retain the death penalty. This is a unique institution that represents clients on death row in many primary Commonwealth countries and uses strategic litigation for change that affects not only their individual clients but sometimes all those on death row and even those not yet facing capital punishment. No other UK organisation does this work.’

‘Parvais Jabbar and Saul Lehrfreund, and their excellent team, are dedicated to using the law and research to effect considerable change around the world.’

‘Saul Lehrfreund has unparalleled knowledge and experience of challenging the death penalty globally – both legally and politically. He works incredibly hard and is committed to upholding the rule of law in this exceptionally demanding area. He has been involved in most, if not all, major legal challenges to the mandatory death penalty in the Privy Council.’

‘Saul Lehrfreund and Parvais Jabbar are two utterly brilliant and caring lawyers who have given their life to this enormous work.’

‘Excellent team able to handle appeals to the Privy Council, where their cases are often at the cutting edge of the law.’

‘The Death Penalty Project that the firm hosts is unique in the world.’

‘Saul Lehrfreund and Parvais Jabbar are exceptional lawyers with total dedication to saving clients from execution and promoting the abolition of the death penalty – leading figures worldwide on this issue.’

Duncan Lewis Solicitors

The civil liberties and human rights group at Duncan Lewis Solicitors is a ‘behemoth in the legal aid sector’, and is noted as having a ‘particular specialism in migrants’ rights cases.’ Toufique Hossain is a key contact in this regard, with his practice remaining committed to fighting for the right to liberty and refuge from persecution. James Packer is another influential member of the team, regularly involved in test cases concerning access to the courts, unlawful detention and forced removals from the UK.

Other key lawyers:

Ahmed Aydeed; Angela Sandhal; Bahar Ata; Claire Ryan; Gergana Pentcheva; James Packer; Jenna McKinney; Nazia Khan; Rohena Wallace; Satvir Sahota; Toufique Hossain; Vilash Gami; Graeme Rothwell


‘The team has an unrelenting commitment to their clients’ best interests and will always go the extra mile.’

‘Graeme Rothwell is without peers in the sector. The best solicitor I have worked with on civil liberties and human rights. He knows the law and the type of evidence necessary to win cases. Clients trust him with their lives, let alone their cases, and that is because he is always fully committed to them.’

‘Duncan Lewis is a behemoth in the legal aid sector, with particular specialism in immigration and migrants’ rights cases. It has a large, dynamic team who work tirelessly on the most challenging cases.’

‘DL operates at the cutting edge of claimant public law work with a boldness and courage which other firms lack. They are willing to take on even the most challenging cases, ensuring representation for many vulnerable clients who would otherwise not have any.’

‘Toufique Hossain – unrivalled market knowledge.’

‘Bahar Ata – really excellent, experienced lawyer with a good strategic eye.’

Key clients

The Public and Commercial Services Union, Care 4 Calais, Detention Action alongside six asylum seekers (AAA & Ors)

HT, Detention Action & Public & Commercial Services Union

Women for Refugee Women (‘WRW’) and SPM

Public and Commercial Services Union and Care 4 Calais v SSHD

Brook House Inquiry

Sonya Dalton

Malcolm Emery

Work highlights

  • Acting in the lead challenge to the SSHD’s Rwanda policy to remove asylum seekers from the UK to Rwanda.
  • Acting on the Manston challenge over wrongful detention in Kent.

Gold Jennings

Gold Jennings has a longstanding reputation for its expertise in migrants' rights, police law and criminal justice, and inquests and inquiries. Head of public law Clare Jennings has a particular focus on migrants' rights and judicial reviews, while Matthew Gold leads on civil actions against public authorities and is adept regarding claims for breaches of the Human Rights Act.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Gold; Clare Jennings

Other key lawyers:

Chez Cotton; Rachel Etheridge; Jessica Roome


‘A firm which always goes the extra mile for their clients. They are tenacious, every client matters to them and they will look after you.’

‘Matthew Gold is an exceptional practitioner. He makes sure he is on top of every point so he can best present his client’s case as well as explain everything to the client. He has excellent judgment.’

‘The firm has a very high level of expertise in inquests and claims against public authorities, particularly in cases involving mental health issues.’

Key clients

Group claim – mobile phone seizure claims v SSHD (JR and Civil)

Group claim – Manston possessions seizure claims v SSHD

Various JRs v SSHD re Rwanda

Myra Simpson

Group claim – Napier Barracks (JR and Civil) v SSHD

Group claim- Manston detention claims v SSHD

Caroline Murray

Curfew JR/Civil Claims

Clare Nash

Work highlights

  • Represented asylum seekers who had been subjected to the Home Office’s secret, blanket policy of seizing the mobile phones of all migrants who entered the UK by small boat.
  • Acted in judicial review claims against the Secretary of State for the Home Department on behalf of dozens of individuals claiming that they had been mistreated during the asylum process and had been falsely imprisoned/deprived of their liberty in breach of Article 5 ECHR during the Covid-19 outbreak.
  • Acting in group litigation for asylum seekers who were detained at the Manston Centre in October/November 2022 in bringing a civil claim against the Home Office for false imprisonment and breaches of the Human Rights Act.

Hausfeld & Co LLP

Fielding a team 'which delivers real ooomph power when it gets to the crunch', Hausfeld & Co LLP is a claimant-focused firm which handles cases concerning a plethora of human rights issues, such as the right to food, education and housing; the group has also recently seen an uptick in work related to climate change. Of counsel Ingrid Gubbay leads the offering and is a recognised expert in bringing public and private litigation on behalf of communities affected by large-scale corporate violations. Key contact Wessen Jazrawi recently brought an action on behalf of individuals directly impacted by climate change against the UK government, while Sarah Moore’s practice also confronts human rights issues that intersect with environmental law.

Practice head(s):

Ingrid Gubbay

Other key lawyers:

Wessen Jazrawi; Sarah Moore; David Lawne; Luke Grimes


‘Great team.’

‘Hausfeld demonstrate strength in depth which is a match for any other firm in this sector and which delivers real ooomph power when it gets to the crunch. I never doubt their ability to deliver.’

‘Depth of experience and strength of judgment are key features in the team I work with, from partner level down to the most junior members.’

Work highlights

  • Acting for the CEO of a disability aviation charity in relation to a disability discrimination claim.
  • Worked with a group of affected families which had suffered bereavement or significant injury due to vaccination to lobby the Government to undertake a review and/or overhaul of the VDPA.

ITN Solicitors

The civil liberties group at ITN Solicitors has continued to expand its reputation for work related to national security issues, policing and protest regulations, and prisoners’ rights, acting for a broad range of private and third sector clients. William Kenyon heads up the practice and has a proven track record assisting British citizens who have been detained oversees. Lochlinn Parker departed for Good Law Practice in May 2023.

Practice head(s):

William Kenyon


‘William Kenyon is doggedly diligent and committed to his clients. He is calm and organised in his conduct of litigation and able to liaise with a team of counsel (and other firms of solicitors) seamlessly.’

‘William Kenyon is a phenomenally hard-working lawyer. He puts real time and care into thinking through all the issues on a case and is utterly committed to doing the best for his client.’

‘ITN’s civil liberties and human rights practice has a strong national security and serious crime element.’

‘William Kenyon is a highly astute lawyer who grasps difficult legal problems and issues quickly, and proposes simple, straightforward solutions. This is a particular skill in the context of measures deployed for national security reasons where the legal framework is vague, which relies on lawyers taking the initiative to protect clients’ rights.’

‘Fantastic cross-over experience in criminal and public law. Experts in protest law.’

‘ITN is the place to go for civil liberties and human rights issues if you are bringing a claim. It is synonymous with civil liberties and human rights and has an established practice of bringing interesting and groundbreaking legal claims.’

‘William Kenyon is incredibly intelligent, which he deploys in bringing challenging and high-profile claims. He is charming, meaning clients go back to him. If you have a civil liberties or human rights act claim, you can’t get better than William Kenyon.’

Key clients

XR Greta

The App Drivers and Couriers Union (“ADCU”)

C15 and other SIAC

Smart v SSJ

Work highlights

  • Acted in a novel application for habeas corpus on behalf of a client who is being detained indefinitely in a detention camp in North East Syria by the Kurdish authorities.
  • Acting for a client seeking to review the decision to impose and maintain obligations imposed on him pursuant to his Temporary Exclusion Order.
  • Act for a large number of XR activists who were allegedly unlawfully arrested at significant XR protests.

Saunders Law

Saunders Law regularly handles complex and high-profile claims against police forces, prisons and other detaining authorities, including public sector departments such as the Home Office, CPS and Ministry of Justice. Nia Williams heads the firm’s human rights department, supported by deputy head Clare Evans; the group has a proven track record representing clients in cases against the police and prisons for abuse of power, discrimination and deaths in custody, with particularly knowledge of privacy breaches under Article 8 of the HRA. Cyrilia Knight leads the public inquiries team and is another key contact.

Practice head(s):

Nia Williams; Cyrilia Knight; Clare Evans


‘I believe that what made this firm unique was that it was a specialist law firm in cases against the police and that it was recommended to me by different sources.’

‘An excellent team, who work closely together on a range of high-profile cases. Outstanding client care.’

‘Nia Williams is a fantastic solicitor. She works incredibly hard, is highly knowledgeable and truly cares about her clients.’

‘Cyrilia Knight has a significant practice in civil liberties and human rights and has worked on some of the most high-profile and important cases of our times. She is highly skilled, far beyond her years of experience. Clare Evans is a fairly recent but brilliant addition to the team.’

‘Saunders Law consistently demonstrates an unwavering commitment to defending civil liberties and promoting human rights. Their profound understanding of the complexities within this field, combined with their strategic approach, allows them to provide effective representation for their clients.’

‘I highly recommend Saunders Law for their exceptional expertise, passion, and tireless dedication to upholding justice in the realm of civil liberties and human rights.’

‘Cyrilia Knight is an extraordinary figure in civil liberties, known for her exceptional communication skills and relentless pursuit of equality. Her articulate arguments and commitment to social justice make her a standout solicitor.’

‘They are hard working and committed to ensuring that the client understands the full details and import of the evidence. They provide highly professional support to both clients and counsel, ensuring a first-class service. The clients’ interests are at the centre of all that they do.’

Key clients



Family of Terry Smith

Family of Kevin Clarke

Plymouth shooting inquest

Family of Kyle Maher

Family of Andrew Brown

HMP New Hall strip searches

Simpson Millar LLP

Simpson Millar LLP fields a ‘fantastic team’ of human rights specialists who are active across the spectrum of HRA and ECHR related claims, spanning work for victims of trafficking and vulnerable children, as well as inquests and claims against public authorities. One leading figure within the team is Victoria Pogge Von Strandmann, who has recently handled complex cases concerning discrimination under Article 14. Chris Callender is another senior figure, with particular expertise representing children and young people. Dan Rosenberg and Sarah Woosey spearhead the education and children’s rights offering.

Practice head(s):

Victoria Pogge Von Strandmann; Chris Callender; Dan Rosenberg

Other key lawyers:

Verity Altaras; Sarah Woosey; Lois Clifton; Silvia Nicolaou Garcia


‘The firm is exceptionally committed to righting wrongs and exposing injustices. They will take on work where others might not, and will do it to the best standard possible. I operate on both sides of the litigation and I would find them formidable if they were my opponents.’

‘The administrative and public law team is one of – if not the – strongest claimant-focussed teams in the area of civil liberties and human rights. They have a particular expertise in representing vulnerable clients, including children and victims of trafficking and torture.’

‘The team is full of exceptionally dedicated, compassionate and highly intelligent lawyers, who will not stop fighting for the client until justice is done.’

‘Victoria Pogge Von Strandmann is a class act. She is a leader in the field. Her attention to detail, analytical skills, legal knowledge and client-handling abilities are second to none, and I would be hard pressed to think of a lawyer who I would rather work with in a complicated case involving a vulnerable client’s human rights.’

‘Silvia Nicolaou Garcia is a superstar when it comes to human rights claims involving victims of trafficking. Her expertise, dedication and skill in this area has been recognised by the courts. She has a calm demeanour which inspires confidence while at the same time being utterly tenacious and committed while stopping at nothing to get justice for her clients.’

‘A fantastic team who demonstrate the highest level of work at all levels. They are consistently acting on complex claims and those involving vulnerable clients.’

‘Victoria Pogge Von Strandmann leads the team as a highly experienced partner across a range of public law areas. She is meticulous, approachable and efficient, and a go-to for complex and challenging cases.’

‘Chris Callender and Victoria Pogge Von Strandmann are both excellent, as is Dan Rosenberg.’

Key clients

LXA v Coventry City Council

Grandmother of teenage boy with special needs

Humanist parent of a year 9 child in a Worcestershire state secondary school

MD v Secretary of State for the Home Department

Work highlights

  • Represented ZA and three children in a challenge to the UK’s refusal to permit them to transfer from Greece to join ZA’s oldest son in the UK by way of a judicial review challenge in the Upper Tribunal.
  • Acting for a claimant against the Ministry of Justice and an NHS Trust in a case concerning her placement and treatment and discharge to the community from prison.
  • Acted for the grandmother of a teenage boy with significant special educational needs in relation to the Department for Education’s new behaviour advice for schools, which effectively implied that it was appropriate to sanction children so long as they understood the rule or instruction and were not unable to act differently.


Sinclairslaw handles a steady and particularly varied stream of cases, from discrimination and HRA claims, to actions against the police and state data protection issues. Senior associate Helen Gill leads the practice, supported by ‘exceptional strategic litigatorPaul Conrathe and veteran managing director John Ford.

Practice head(s):

Helen Gill

Other key lawyers:

John Ford; Louise Eardley; Paul Conrathe


‘Knowledgeable, committed, friendly, and efficient.’

‘Helen Gill is very competent and knows the High Court process very well. I have found her to be level headed under pressure.’

‘Paul Conrathe is an exceptional strategic litigator. He is excellent at identifying unusual angles to cases. He is extremely personable, capable and has an outstanding way with clients.’


Following its foundation in 2020, AWO has already established a strong reputation for its work in rapidly developing fields related to human rights, particularly technology, data protection and privacy law. Founding partner Ravi Naik is at the forefront of these emerging areas, handling complex cases concerning facial recognition technology, tracking and profiling of gamblers, and behavioural targeting more generally.

Practice head(s):

Ravi Naik

Other key lawyers:

Alex Lawrence-Archer; Cassie Roddy


‘The team at AWO, although small, is one of the best that I have worked with. They clearly nurture the junior staff and seem to provide a good place to work.’

‘AWO individuals all have the deep knowledge of human rights that I expect but find often lacking in other firms.’

‘Ravi Naik would be my preferred person to collaborate with on all human rights issues that we are currently working on. He combines deep knowledge with an incredible ability to distill his advice into understandable and digestible portions, despite all of the complexity.’

Key clients

Big Brother Watch

Clean Up Gambling

Bureau Européen des Unions de Consommateurs (the European Bureau of Consumers’ Unions)

Tanya O’Carroll

The Good Law Project

Worker Info Exchange; Public Services International; Institute for the Future of Work

Defend Digital Me

Global Witness

Dr Johnny Ryan (Irish Council for Civil Liberties)


Work highlights

  • Drafted a complaint relating to Google’s account registration process.
  • Challenging a social media platform’s processing of a client’s data for behavioural advertising and direct marketing purposes.
  • Produced a legal opinion on the increased use of thermal imaging cameras and scanners by private entities, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic, calling for real caution in deploying these technologies, due to data protection and Equality Act concerns.

Hudgell Solicitors

Hudgell Solicitors have ‘quickly established themselves as a go-to firm for large scale and complex inquests and inquiries’, representing bereaved families in Article 2 inquests where there is suspicion of death resulting from the state breaching its duty to protect the right to life. Executive chairman Neil Hudgell is one of those spearheading the offering, while head of civil liberties Vicky Richardson has significant experience handling cases concerning police assault, unlawful arrest, breaches of data protection laws, and other human rights-related issues.

Practice head(s):

Neil Hudgell; Vicky Richardson

Other key lawyers:

Terry Wilcox


‘Hudgell Solicitors have quickly established themselves as a go-to firm for large scale and complex inquests and inquiries, representing bereaved families in both the inquests and civil claims against the state that may arise.’

‘I work closely with Terry Wilcox and Vicky Richardson. Clients and families love them as they focus on friendly and personal service and advice. They are a pleasure to work with as a team.’

‘They work very well together as a team and put client care first and foremost.’

‘Hudgell’s specialise in this area, and stand out from others who dabble. This is mainly due to their recruitment and ethos which is very much client-centric.’

‘They are unique for a litany of reasons, but, above all, they approach human rights cases with common sense and put the client’s interests above any broader attempt at vindication.’

‘They are resourceful and can quickly pull together a strong team to service the needs of a client.’

‘The client care they offer is second to none – the client is simply at the heart of everything they do. The firm’s ethos is righting wrongs.’

‘They are not afraid to take on a challenge, no matter what size.’

Key clients

Families at the Manchester Arena Inquiry

160+ Injured victims of the Manchester Arena bombing

Family of Lewis Skelton (deceased)

Groups seeking Core Participant status at Covid-19 Inquiry

Parents of Chelsea Blue Mooney (deceased)

Families of Gabriel Kovari, Daniel Whitworth, Anthony Walgate and Jack Taylor – victims of convicted murderer Stephen Port

Victims of London terror attack

Family of Jessie Whitehead (deceased)

Family of Jack Barnes (deceased)

Family of Laura Winham (deceased)

Work highlights

  • Representing former sub-postmasters across England and Wales who were victims of the Post Office Horizon Scandal.
  • Represented families in the Manchester Arena Bombing public inquiry.
  • Represents the family of Lewis Skelton, who died after being shot by police in Hull in November 2016.

Mishcon de Reya LLP

Mishcon de Reya LLP has extensive expertise in high-profile human rights cases with an international angle, as well as related areas of judicial review, employment, data protection and environmental law. Having been promoted to partner in April 2023, practice head Katy Colton leads a team with increasing strength in the immigration field, which is gaining notice for defending politically motivated prosecutions and bringing asylum claims engaging ECHR rights.

Practice head(s):

Katy Colton

Other key lawyers:

James Libson; Maria Patsalos; Harry Eccles-Williams; Kamal Rahman; Shulamit Aberbach


‘The team are gaining real momentum in building a profile in the civil liberties and human rights field. They are lovely, smart people who it is a joy to work with.’

‘First-rate human rights practice, in particular in the immigration and asylum sphere.’

‘Kamal Rahman is a leading human rights practitioner.’

‘A first rate civil liberties and human rights team. They have been involved in some of the most significant cases in the public law field in the last decade.’

‘Katy Colton is a true star and someone who has achieved partnership at an astonishingly young age.’

‘Katy Colton is a consummate professional who can be relied on to get the job done.’

‘They bring a commercial approach to human rights cases. They are fun to work while being focussed and serious about what they do.’

Key clients

Rohingya victims of violence in Myanmar

Public Law Project

Jennifer Webster

Community Windpower

Janus Friis

Azeem Rafiq

Board of Deputies of British Jews

Ukraine Justice Alliance

Greener Litigation

Work highlights

  • Representing members of the Rohingya community in an action to hold Facebook to account for its role in facilitating human rights abuses in Myanmar.
  • Acting for the Public Law Project in an appeal concerning potential discrimination arising from the use of algorithms in the Home Office’s decision making.
  • Acted for Community Windpower in a successful challenge to the implementation of a cap on revenue for renewable energy generators, on grounds including a breach of Article 1, Protocol 1 ECHR.

Wilson Solicitors LLP

Wilson Solicitors LLP provides ‘excellent human rights expertise, particularly in the immigration area’, regularly bringing test cases of significant public interest, including challenging the government’s intention to relocate asylum seekers to Rwanda – Jed Pennington is a key contact in this space. Following the promotion of James Elliot to firm managing partner in April 2023, the practice is jointly led by Nina Rathbone Pullen and Katy Robinson; both are highly skilled regarding civil liberties of immigration detainees and compensation claims for human rights violations.

Practice head(s):

Nina Rathbone Pullen; Katy Robinson

Other key lawyers:

Jed Pennington; James Elliot; Nusrat Uddin


‘Brilliant, tenacious and clever lawyers.’

‘Wilson Solicitors consistently excel in complex claims and those involving cross-over areas of practice. They are an excellent team with exceptional lawyers at all levels and are a go-to firm for strategic claims.’

‘Gold standard team for migrant rights work.’

‘Katy Robinson is a top notch lawyer.’

‘Excellent human rights expertise in particular in the immigration area – raise novel and complex points in appeals, judicial review, detention claims and damages claims.’

‘Wilson Solicitors is the firm I most regularly recommend to people looking for representation. Brilliant from top to bottom; filled with passionate and exceptional lawyers who represent the very best that the legal aid sector has to offer.’

‘They are unparalleled in their work on complex human rights and civil liberties claims, including issues of trafficking, detention, immigration, age assessment, and strategic litigation.’

‘Wilson Solicitors is outstanding in every area of its work and provide the very highest level of service to all their clients. You know that a case is in the best of hands with the firm.’

Key clients

ASM (Iraq)

Medical Justice

20 individuals who were detained at the Manston detention facility

6 individuals who brought judicial reviews challenging GPS tags

Wong v Basfar

R (on the application of All the Citizens) & Supply Chain Coordination Limited, Collaborative Procurement Partnership LLP, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

Migrants Organise

G – client held at Napier barracks

FAO and ALN – clients held in unsuitable asylum support accommodation in former jail cells at ‘Clink 78’ hostel

IZ – age disputed client

Work highlights

  • Represented a victim of trafficking in a Supreme Court case, in which the client successfully established that a diplomat is not immune from civil claims of trafficking and domestic servitude.
  • Representing an asylum seeker and victim of modern slavery in a challenge to the government’s Rwanda plan.
  • Successfully challenged the UK government’s decision to procure rubber gloves from the PPE supplier Supermax, despite clear indicators of forced labour in the supply chain.