Katherine O'Byrne > Doughty Street Chambers > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Doughty Street Chambers
Doughty Street Chambers

Work Department


Katie has a broad practice specialising in international law, human rights, public law and extradition.


She has been instructed as junior counsel in the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal, and frequently appears unled in the High Court.  Katie currently serves as counsel to multiple public inquiries, including several years as junior counsel to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse. 

Katie has represented individual and state clients before UN bodies and the International Court of Justice, and has given evidence in the European Parliament on human rights issues and Brexit. She regularly acts as counsel before the European Court of Human Rights, including representing a vulnerable domestic violence victim, A, in her successful challenge to the UK’s ‘bedroom tax’ regime.  Katie is an international trial monitor with the Bar Human Rights Committee and EuroMed, and a member of the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s panel of counsel.

Katie has expertise in domestic public law cases and civil claims with international law elements, including torture, sexual violence and arbitrary detention cases.  She acts in evidence-heavy group litigation involving complex points of law, including over five years representing various claimants in the construction industry blacklisting litigation. She regularly acts unled in urgent claims for vulnerable adults and children in need.

Katie has lectured in the Juris Doctor program at Melbourne Law School and has published regularly in the areas of public law, gender, children’s rights and international law. She is a contributing author to Halsbury’s Laws on Judicial Review and Supperstone, Goudie and Walker on Judicial Review.


Constitutional and Administrative Law Bar Association
Human Rights Lawyers Association


LLM (Class I), University of Cambridge, UK (2012)
Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice (Dist.), College of Law, Australia (2009)
BA/LLB (1st Class Honours), Monash University, Australia (2009)

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Administrative and public law (including elections)

(Leading Juniors) Ranked: Tier 4

Katherine O’ByrneDoughty Street ChambersShe has a clear and mature drafting style in written pleadings. She’s also a pleasure to work with – responsive, extremely hard-working and organised, practical and very user-friendly from the solicitor perspective.

London Bar > Inquests and inquiries

(Rising stars) Ranked: Tier 1

Katherine O’ByrneDoughty Street ChambersA superb barrister in the field of inquiry and inquest work, and her work rate is phenomenal. Katherine is also intellectually brilliant and razor-sharp – a future star in the field.

One of the go-to chambers in this area‘, Doughty Street Chambers ‘has excellent barristers and the clerks are always responsive and helpful‘. In the resumed inquests into the 1974 Birmingham Pub Bombings, Heather Williams QC recently led the team that represented the families of three of the 21 deceased. Also in recent work of note, Henrietta Hill QC is currently instructed as deputy counsel to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (and is leading counsel in four of the inquiry’s investigations); Fiona Murphy acted in the Anthony Grainger Inquiry, which involved a fatal police shooting by Greater Manchester Police; and Alison Gerry represented the sister of Annabella Landsberg, who died in HMP Peterborough’s custody. ‘Future star of the BarKatherine O’Byrne is an up-and-coming member of chambers.