DEPARTMENT PROFILE

5RB

Data Protection

10 ranked barristersBand 2London (Bar)UK Bar 2021 View ranking table
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Ranked Barristers

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The set's practitioners are capable of handling a range of complex cases brought under the DPA. Instructing solicitors regularly turn to the set for its "row upon row of talented counsel" and its "depth of knowledge" in the area. The barristers have extensive recent experience acting for large claimant groups, with highlights including representing employees in the Wm Morrison Payroll Information Group Litigation, and acting for the customers seeking compensation following the widely publicised Ticketmaster payment breach. The barristers are highly regarded for their expertise in the media sector, with high-profile clients including the BBC.

Client service:

"The clerks are fantastic: they are very approachable and hard-working, and they will go the extra mile." "Andrew Love, the senior clerk, is amazingly responsive, proactive and incredibly supportive. He always makes sure chambers really adds value."

Strengths:

Aidan Eardley
Adept at representing clients ranging from public authorities and government departments to large-scale corporations and data controllers, in information law matters at every level of the courts. He demonstrates a particular flair for cases arising in the media sector, in which he acts for both claimants and defendants.
"He is very knowledgeable and meticulous." "He phrases his advice in a way that is immediately accessible to the client." "He pays attention to detail without losing sight of the larger principles."
Recent work: Acted for True Vision Productions in appealing the ICO's £120,000 fine for alleged wrongful processing of patient data during the making of a Channel 4 documentary on stillbirths.

Strengths:

Andrew Caldecott QC
Has established himself as a key authority on data protection legislation and the provisions of the GDPR, in addition to his superior command of defamation law. He provides strategic advice to blue-chip corporates on compliance issues, as well as representing them and claimants in actions alleging the misuse of personal data, or those arising from data breaches. He has tackled a number of highly significant cases over the years, including those influencing the law on issues such as breach of confidence and blacklisting.
"He is a wonderful advocate." "His submissions are well thought through and judges like him."

Strengths:

Clara Hamer
Cultivates a strong practice across the spectrum of information law, data protection, media and defamation matters, with a client base comprising high-profile publishers and broadcasters, as well as public sector entities. She brings to bear a valuable affinity for transatlantic and US-based media and information law cases.
"She will fight hard for her clients but is a courteous and fair opponent." "She pays great attention to detail and she has good judgement."
Recent work: Defended Bloomberg against an interim injunction seeking to take down an online article detailing a criminal investigation. The case tested the journalism exemption in the Data Protection Act 1998.

Strengths:

Felicity McMahon
Regularly called upon by clients to advise on data protection matters in the context of the media and communications sector, alongside parallel defamation, privacy and harassment issues. She is a prolific writer on the topic of data privacy and defamation, and a skilled adviser on data-related regulatory requirements.
"She is hard-working, provides well-considered advice and turns around instructions very quickly." "A real bright spark. She has a great manner which is client-friendly and down to earth."

Strengths:

Greg Callus
A highly regarded junior who has prior experience of having acted both in-house and as a judicial assistant. His broad practice encompasses topical data protection and privacy concerns such as the right to be forgotten, and sees him advising at every stage from pre-action advice to claims, defences and counterclaims under the DPA. Callus acts for both claimants and defendants, and he counts a number of media broadcasters and publishing houses among his clients.
"He has an encyclopedic knowledge of the market and he spots things that others miss." "He impresses with his innovative and lateral way of thinking." "He has the ability to bring novel ideas to stalled situations and he can identify the optimal way to run a case."

Strengths:

Jacob Dean
Highly adept at representing either side in DPA breach of statutory duty cases involving public authorities, and in multi-jurisdictional litigation. His wider experience encompasses the full suite of data protection claims, as well as associated privacy, harassment and defamation issues.
"He has a good commercial awareness and can assess the merits of the case efficiently." "He thinks outside the box and is a very safe pair of hands." "He is knowledgeable, approachable and practical."

Strengths:

Jonathan Barnes QC
Complements a strong focus in the domain of data protection with valuable parallel experience in the fields of privacy and defamation, earning substantial market recognition and acting in some of the most important cases in the area.
"He provides great strategic and tactical nous and he is always several moves ahead of the opponent." "He has a unique eye for the critical issues."
Recent work: Appeared in the Supreme Court for the claimant employees in the Morrisons payroll data breach litigation.

Strengths:

Jonathan Scherbel-Ball
His practice runs the gamut of data protection and information law functions, from representation in disputes to regulatory guidance. He acts for public bodies, broadcasters and others in data processing claims and challenges to the activities of journalists brought under the DPA.
"He is an enormously hard worker and very detail-focused, and you want him fighting your corner." "He reads around the subject very widely and he has a real breadth of experience." "Nothing is too much trouble for him and he can turn things around incredibly quickly."
Recent work: Acted for the BBC in obtaining a reporting restriction order after information concerning third parties who had brought equal pay claims was accidentally disclosed in a court bundle and accessed by the media.

Strengths:

Justin Rushbrooke QC
Enjoys a strong profile in data protection law, particularly as it pertains to the publication or broadcast of allegedly false, damaging or sensitive information in the media. He is experienced in representing individuals and organisations both at first instance and on appeal, at the Court of Appeal and in the Supreme Court.
"He has a good grasp of detail and strategy, and is totally on top of data protection law." "His reassuring manner is wonderful."

Strengths:

Richard Munden
Well established as a highly proficient barrister with substantial experience in both pure Data Protection Act claims and the use of the legislation in litigation against media organisations. He is well versed in a range of data matters, with noted experience advising on data breaches and the right to be forgotten.
"He is affable, approachable and helpful, and is my first choice of counsel because he is such a spectacular lawyer." "He is very clear and insightful; he is consistently strong."
Recent work: Acted for the claimants in group litigation actions against Ticketmaster and Equifax, in respect of data breaches.

Data Protection Department

5RB

firm
Department location

5 Gray’s Inn Square

Gray's Inn

London

Greater London

UK

WC1R 5AH

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Ranked Barristers

Chambers Research is conducted by 200 Research Analysts, across 200 jurisdictions and provides nearly 6,000 rankings tables. Annually we collect hundreds of thousands of responses from clients, the majority via in-depth interview. Learn more about our methodology.

Silks (QC)

London (Bar)

Data Protection


Andrew Caldecott QC
Band 1
Jonathan Barnes QC
New Silks
Justin Rushbrooke QC
Band 3

Juniors

London (Bar)

Data Protection


Aidan Eardley
Band 1
Clara Hamer
Band 3
Felicity McMahon
Band 3