39 Essex Chambers

Immigration Department

London (Bar)
Current View:

This content is provided by Chambers. Learn more about our methodology

A leading set for the representation of the Home Secretary in a litany of complex immigration matters, boasting a number of members on the Treasury Panel. Their areas of expertise include asylum, detention, national security and human rights immigration claims. Recent work highlights include MM (Malawi) v SSHD, which considered the circumstances in which Article 3 ECHR would prevent the UK from returning a seriously ill foreign national to a country where they might die due to lack of treatment. Members act before all tribunals and courts, from the First-tier Tribunal to the CJEU. Interviewees describe the set as a "very well-established, very strong chambers with a lot of good people, and one of the leading public law chambers."

Client service: "The clerking service has been excellent, and the individual we dealt with was very helpful and co-operative." Alastair Davidson and Michael Kaplan are senior clerks at the set, and client service is overseen by CEO Lindsay Scott.

Christopher Staker
Frequently represents the Home Secretary in human rights immigration and asylum cases, involving issues of family life and trafficking, among others. He has appeared before the Court of Appeal on numerous occasions in such cases.
Strengths: "He is a tough opponent who will explore every avenue for his client." "A very thoughtful and measured opponent."
Recent work: Acted for the Home Secretary in a case where the Court of Appeal established that the ECtHR case of Paposhvili v Belgium, which extended the circumstances in which the removal of a person suffering a medical condition could be contrary to Article 3 ECHR, had no effect on the compatibility of such removals with Article 8.

Lisa Giovannetti QC
An immigration specialist with a vast and varied practice consisting of government, public body and private individual work. Her caseload encompasses the full spectrum of human rights, national security and asylum matters, and she routinely appears in the highest domestic and EU courts.
Strengths: "An absolutely charming lawyer who definitely has the ear of the court." "Fair and robust."
Recent work: Appeared for the Home Secretary in an appeal to the Supreme Court concerning applications for British citizenship made in reliance upon false information. The court agreed with with the analysis put forward on behalf of the Home Secretary.

Rory Dunlop QC
Esteemed silk offering capabilities that cover the full range of immigration law. He routinely acts both for and against the government and is a familiar face in the High Court. He is noted for his expertise in complex cases concerning asylum and detention. 
Strengths: "An extremely generous and courteous opponent and a committed and hard-fighting litigant." "His practice is mostly on the government side but he's equally good at acting for claimants. He's thorough, reliable, easy to work with and extremely proficient."
Recent work: Acted in MM (Malawi) v SSHD, one of a number of Supreme Court appeals considering the circumstances in which Article 3 ECHR should prevent the UK from returning a seriously ill foreign national to a country where they may die due to lack of treatment.

Zane Malik
Admired as a barrister who enjoys bringing creative angles to immigration cases, and who has appeared in important cases before the Supreme Court. He counts the Home Secretary among his clients.
Strengths: "As opposing counsel he's very fair-minded, his skeletons are clear and succinct and he can almost make you doubt your own case. As co-counsel, he is ingenious, very open and willing to share his views on issues." "His strengths include an in-depth knowledge of law, extensively vast experience, his deft interpretation of complicated immigration rules and a friendly manner."
Recent work: Acted in AM (Zimbabwe) v SSHD, one of two appeals made by foreign nationals in relation to asylum claims on the grounds of ill health. The Court of Appeal considered the conflict between UK law and Article 3 ECHR on this subject.