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Claire Darwin

Work 020 7404 3447
Matrix Chambers (Matrix Chambers)

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Claire Darwin specialises in Employment and Discrimination Law, and undertakes related work in the fields of Commercial, Public, Education and EU Law.


Claire is ranked in the independent legal directories Chambers UK Bar, the Legal 500, and Who’s Who Legal as a leading barrister in her fields of specialism.

She has significant experience of advocacy, advisory and drafting work at appellate level. She has appeared both led and unled in the Court of Appeal, and as junior counsel in matters before the Supreme Court and European Court of Human Rights. Claire has appeared in over 20 full appeals in the Employment Appeal Tribunal, many of which have been reported.

She appears very regularly in the Employment Tribunal, the County Court and the High Court, and is often instructed alone against leading counsel. Claire has significant experience of complex multi-party/group actions and has acted in a variety of mediations and other forms of Alternative Dispute Resolution.

She was appointed to the Attorney General’s A Panel of Junior Counsel to the Crown in June 2017, a small panel of barristers appointed to advise and represent the UK government in complex civil and EU cases. She was previously on the B and C Panels.

She was called to the Bar of Ireland in July 2018. 


Called 2005, Inner Temple; called to the Bar of Ireland, July 2018; Appointed to the Attorney General’s Junior Counsel to the Crown, A Panel from September 2017, previously appointed to B and C panels.  Publications of note: co-author of the chapter on Discrimination in Employment in Bullen & Leake & Jacob’s Precedents of Pleadings, 18th edition, and the editor of the Practical Law Company’s Guide to Discrimination in the Provision of Goods and Services. She is also co-author of the chapter on the Relationship between Freedom of Information and Data Protection in the Law Society’s Freedom of Information Handbook (3rd edition, December 2012), and was a Contributing Editor of the Education Law Journal from 2012-5. Her article, Procedural Fairness on Appeal: Is O’Cathail No Longer Good Law?, was published in the Industrial Law Journal in September 2016 (Ind Law J (2016) 45 (3) pp 423-43).


German, Spanish, basic French.


Employment Lawyers Association (ELA); Employment Law Bar Association (ELBA); Industrial Law Society;  European Employment Lawyers Association, the UK Association for European Law (UKAEL) and the Bar European Group.


Kendrick School, Reading; St Catharine’s College, Cambridge (2002, MA History), University of Heidelberg, Germany; City University (2004, CPE/GDL).

London Bar

Administrative and public law (including local government)

Within: Leading Juniors

Claire Darwin - Matrix Chambers ‘ Notably courageous in her approach to the other side's tactics. ’

Within: Administrative and public law (including local government)

For some 'the best set for public law and human rights', Matrix Chambers has members instructed, both for government and claimants, in agenda-setting matters. Phillippa Kaufmann QC represented two victims of "Black Cab rapist" John Worboys in a challenge to the Parole Board's decision to release him after serving ten years of an indefinite sentence for public protection – Daniel Squires QC represented the Mayor of London. Karon Monaghan QC represented a gay Hong Kong civil servant, who married his husband in New Zealand, in a challenge to the Hong Kong government's policy of denying same-sex spouses employee benefits. In the Court of Appeal, Claire Darwin, unled, represented the University of Leicester in judicial review proceedings following its disciplinary decision to expel a student who sent a threatening message and Taken meme via Facebook to a classmate.

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Within: Leading Juniors

Claire Darwin - Matrix Chambers ‘ An expert in her field. ’

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Within: Leading Juniors

Claire Darwin - Matrix Chambers ‘ Tenacious and up for a fight; always gives it her all. ’

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