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Cloisters Chambers

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Work 020 7827 4000
Fax 020 7827 4100

Schona Jolly QC

Work 020 7827 4000
Cloisters (Cloisters Chambers)


Schona is a cutting-edge equalities lawyer with employment and human rights specialisms across all fields, including commercial. Her work is both domestic and international. She represents both claimants and respondents/defendants at all court (including the High Court) and tribunal levels, and her client list includes high-profile public, private and corporate employers (such as banks, trading houses and law firms), trade unions, national charities and housing associations, the Equalities and Human Rights Commission, as well as individuals. She is known for her skilled advocacy and detailed knowledge of the law, as well as her practical and common sense approach, both with clients and the courts. Schona is an acknowledged expert in all areas of discrimination law, as well as complex whistleblowing claims, including multiple-claimant equal pay claims and county court/High court actions, protection of harassment claims and civil liberties matters. She is particularly experienced in crossover matters and has appeared in a number of high-profile cases, such as the recent landmark Supreme Court case Jivraj v. Hashwani, whose effects have been felt in the employment, equality and commercial arbitration worlds. She also represented Carol Howard in her highly publicised case against the Metropolitan Police last year. She continues to run high-profile whistleblowing and discrimination claims this year. She is also very experienced in non-employment discrimination claims, including in education, and goods and services. She is interested in trafficking law (modern slavery) and the intersection between trafficking, employment law and human rights, both in the UK and abroad. Schona has been appointed again to the EHRC Panel of Counsel, commencing for a four-year period starting in March 2015. She also advises various NGOs on international human rights and discrimination topics and acts as an ad-hoc consultant on discrimination and human rights legislation in Turkey, India, Egypt and other countries. She also advises on minority rights, land rights and their relation to environmental issues worldwide. Most recently, she has won success before the UN Human Rights Committee in Bikramjit Singh v France, challenging the validity of the French secular laws in state schools. Schona is Head of Cloisters’ Human Rights Practice Group and on the Bar Human Rights Committee.


Worked with UN High Commission for Refugees and NGOS at home and abroad including projects in Malaysia, South Asia, the Middle East and Guatemala. Called to the Bar in 1999. Contributor to LAG Discrimination in Employment Handbook 2013; Co-author of LAG Age Discrimination Handbook 2006; 2004 co-author Consultation paper for Age Concern: Addressing Age Barriers: An international comparison of legislation against age discrimination in the field of goods, facilities and services. Former co-editor of Sweet & Maxwell European Human Rights Reports. International lecturer on Human Rights and Equalities, including in relation to freedom of religion, religious dress and observance. She advises various NGOs on international discrimination and human rights topics and is also a qualified mediator.


Legally fluent in French, high level Spanish, Hindi, Punjabi, basic Arabic.


Elected onto the Council of JUSTICE; elected onto the Executive Committee member of the Bar Human Rights Committee, and continuing. ELBA; ELA; Discrimination Law Association; Justice; Lawyers for Liberty; Advocates for International Development; Oxfam International Lawyers Network.


University of Brussels (Licence Speciale European Law); Magdalen College, Oxford (BA Jurisprudence).

London Bar

Civil liberties and human rights (including actions against the police)

Within: Leading Silks

Schona Jolly QC - CloistersExcellent tactical acumen and highly responsive.

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Within: Leading Silks

Schona Jolly QC - CloistersA very impressive silk.

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