Simons Muirhead Burton

Defamation/Reputation Management

5 ranked lawyersBand 1UK-wideUK 2021 View ranking table
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What the team is known for

Accomplished defamation practice, acting for a mix of defendant and claimant clients on libel, privacy and data protection matters. Houses a team of accomplished litigators and strategists supported by highly talented associates. Maintains a fine reputation for its work on behalf of major broadcasters, newspapers and other publishing clients. Also advises NGOs, journalist bodies and trade unions in the UK and USA.


One client appreciates that this is "an impressively tight-knit team with everyone interacting to find a solution," adding: "They are approachable, friendly and super professional."

Another says: "They are really strong on all fronts and do really high-quality work as a firm. It is a very powerful team."

A source reports:"They understand how the newspaper industry works and give us A-star treatment. They provide an excellent service to us and have depth on their team."

Work highlights

Defended Random House in libel proceedings brought by a senior UBS trader claiming that the book 'The Spider Network' contained defamatory statements about him including allegations of criminal conspiracy to defraud.

Notable practitioners

Erica Henshilwood is a senior associate who is noted for her work defending publishers and journalists in libel proceedings and misuse of private information claims. She is also sought out to advise on pre-publication matters, including defending privacy injunction applications.
"She's appropriately robust and provides us with confidence; we 100% trust her advice."

Jeffrey Smele advises newspapers, media outlets and high-profile individuals on a range of defamation and privacy matters. These range from handling injunctions, breach of confidence and libel claims, as well as pre-publication advice.
"He turns things around really fast, gets issues so quickly and is also tech-savvy." "The quality of his work is so strong." "He's very sensible and pragmatic."

Louis Charalambous leads the firm's media offering. He is frequently instructed by a range of newspapers and broadcasters as well as journalists to advise on significant and often high-profile libel and privacy claims.
"One of the best media litigators." "His experience is second to none and he's a grade A partner." "He's been around this area for a long time and knows what he's talking about. He's a really nice guy and always so friendly."

Martin Soames acts as a respected adviser to many of the major book publishing houses. He provides pre- and post-publication advice, as well as handling litigation.
"He's scrupulous, meticulous, knowledgeable, precise and has a realistic but very reassuring approach to risk. I trust him implicitly." "Very thorough, quick to respond and very knowledgeable."

Razi Mireskandari serves as managing partner of the firm. He is celebrated in the market for his considerable experience acting for major news outlets as well as individuals in defamation matters.
"He has excellent judgement." "He has always been strong, supportive and quick-thinking when looking at complex problems."

Department Information

This content is provided by Simons Muirhead Burton.


Simons Muirhead Burton has one of the largest media disputes and reputation management teams in London and is one of the few firms equally adept at handling matters for defendants as well as claimants.

The firm supports newspapers, broadcasters, publishers, journalists and NGOs, as well as individuals. The team is retained by many major newspapers including The Sun, The Mirror, The Times, and Sunday Times for defamation, privacy, data claims and contempt issues.

The team has been at the forefront of leading media cases over the last 10 years. It is well known for representing clients who face difficult claims brought by the state, including police forces, or who face criminal sanctions arising from media law related issues. It also advises in relation to political cases, or those involving high profile individuals from the worlds of sport or film.

Team members are experienced at dealing with online and social media content of all descriptions, including identifying anonymous posters and securing the removal of unlawful material, often involving multiple jurisdictions.

The team, led by Louis Charalambous, advise on newsgathering and other pre-publication/broadcast issues, often against pressure of deadline, and prepare for injunctions with minimal notice. Having highly experienced team members at all levels, the firm conducts litigation efficiently and cost effectively at every stage, including representing clients before the appellate courts in the UK and internationally.


Charalambous, Louis (Head of Department)

Mireskandari, Razi (Head of Department)

Clough, Gordon

Gill, Maninder

Henshilwood, Erica

Henshilwood, Erica

Linch, Emma

Shiloh, Dina

Shotnes, Stephen

Smele, Jeffrey

Defamation/Reputation Management Department

Simons Muirhead Burton

Department location

87-91 Newman Street


Greater London



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Ranked Lawyers

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.


Defamation/Reputation Management

Erica Henshilwood
Associates to watch
Jeffrey Smele
Up and Coming
Louis Charalambous
Band 1
Martin Soames
Band 3
Razi Mireskandari
Eminent Practitioners