Jen Coyne

Call: 2016

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Contact Jen Coyne

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    Education

    BA (Oxon) First Class; MSc (LSE) Distinction; GDL; BPTC.

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    Introduction

    Jen runs a commercial and public law disputes practice, especially focussing on procurement & administrative challenges, business protection & employment and, increasingly, disputes involving an international element.

    Jen has been recognised in the legal directories since 2020, where she is described as “one to watch”, “exceptionally bright” and an “absolutely excellent barrister”.

    As well as fitting into larger teams, Jen is experienced in representing clients as sole counsel in the Court of Appeal, High Court, EAT and the Tribunals. Recent cases include:

    • Acting for the claimants in the largest UK procurement damages claim (£100m+) against the Gambling Commission’s procurement of the 10-year Fourth National Lottery Licence (led by Philip Moser KC and Ewan West).
    • Defending and counter-claiming for the F1 Aston Martin Racing team against a multimillion pound High Court employment and shareholding dispute brought by its former Team Principal (led by Daniel Stilitz KC).
    • Assisting the Government of Antigua and Barbuda in defending proceedings challenging its acquisition and sale of the $120m superyacht Alfa Nero impacted by the US’s Russia sanctions programme (led by Paul Reichler and Richard Leiper KC).
    • News
    • Procurement & subsidy control

      Jen has a busy procurement practice. She is experienced in both prosecuting and defending procurement claims, and leads litigation as sole counsel as well acting as within larger teams. Jen is appointed to the Attorney General’s C Panel of Counsel.

      Jen represented the claimants in the largest ever UK procurement damages claim (>£100m) in IGT v Gambling Commission, a challenge to the award of the 10-year Fourth National Lottery Licence, that has clarified the law on the standing of non-bidders (led by Philip Moser KC and Ewan West).

      Under the new Subsidy Control regime, Jen is already experienced advising clients on the assessment of subsidies and potential subsidies, including on a £100m transport and housing redevelopment scheme as sole counsel.

      Cases

      Jen’s recent work includes:

      • International Game Technology Plc and Camelot UK Lotteries Ltd -v- Gambling Commission and Allwyn Entertainment Ltd [2023] EWHC 1961 (TCC); [2023] EWHC 1420 (TCC); [2022] EWCA Civ 1020 [2022] EWHC 1664 (TCC); [2022] EWHC 1102 (TCC) – acted for the claimants (led by Philip Moser KC and Ewan West) in the £100m+ challenge brought by sub-contractors to an unsuccessful tenderer against the Gambling Commission’s procurement of the Fourth National Lottery Licence under the CCR 2016. The high-profile litigation included a contested Application to Lift, expedited proceedings, and is legally significant for having clarified the law on the standing of non-tenderers.
      • One Medicare -v- NHS Northamptonshire Integrated Care Board – as sole counsel, defending a claim challenging the procurement of an Urgent Care Centre in Corby, including applying to lift the Automatic Suspension and for a contested confidentiality ring order.
      • Marston Holdings Limited -v- Lewisham LBC – defended a claim challenging the procurement of traffic and parking enforcement services and successfully applying to lift the Automatic Suspension (led by Jason Coppel KC).
      • Confidential £100m Subsidy Control advice – as sole counsel, advising a public authority on its compliance with the new subsidy control regime when spending a £100m grant to be used to develop rail and road infrastructure and a housing scheme.
      • Confidential challenge under the PCR 2015 [settled] – as sole counsel, defending a proposed challenge to an NHS procurement of electronic record system (contract value £80m), successfully avoiding issue of the claim.
      • Confidential challenge of £495m NHS contract [settled] – advising potential claimants seeking to challenge an NHS procurement of medical equipment contract worth £495m (led by James Goudie KC).
      • HM Passport Office’s £490m contract procurement – as sole counsel, advising and providing assurance on the procurement of a high-profile £490m contract for UK passports under the PCR 2015 (the procurement ultimately stood with no claims issued).
      • MLS (Overseas) Ltd -v- MoD – acting for the interested party successful bidder in litigation under DSPCR 2011 for a £385m contract for port services (both as sole counsel, and led by Joseph Barrett KC).
      • Confidential advice on the application of procurement rules – advised a public authority on the application of procurement rules, and the light touch regime, to the award of a public contract.
    • Commercial

      Jen has a fast-growing a commercial litigation practice. She is experienced acting for clients across a range of industries, both within large teams and as sole counsel.

      Cases

      Jen’s recent work includes:

      • Szafnauer -v- Aston Martin Racing Ltd – acted for the F1 AMR team in its High Court defence of a multimillion-pound claim alleging constructive dismissal and shareholding claim, and prosecuting its contractual counterclaim against its former Team Principal (led by Daniel Stilitz KC).
      • Guy Carpenter -v- Howden Tiger – assisted the reinsurance brokerage sector-claimants (led by Dan Oudkerk KC and Amy Rogers KC) in one of the largest High Court claims ever brought against former employees and competitors for unlawful means conspiracy and breach of restrictive covenants, following a team move raid on its business – 48 employees including its Europe CEO, across several European offices (led by Dan Oudkerk KC and Amy Rogers KC).
      • Confidential High Court injunctive matter to enforce restrictive covenants [settled] – acted for a tech company to enforce non-competes in a senior engineer’s employment contract (led by Amy Rogers KC).
      • Confidential acting for an international regulator/accreditation body – as sole counsel, advising on the defence of High Court contractual claims threatened by regulated persons who had their accreditation removed, in relation to the fairness of disciplinary proceedings.
      • Attorney General of Antigua and Barbuda -v- Alfa Nero – assisting on the defence to administrative proceedings in Antigua and Barbuda, challenging the acquisition and sale of the $120m superyacht Alfa Nero impacted by the US’s Russia sanctions programme (led by Paul Reichler and Richard Leiper KC).
      • Van Mackelenbergh -v- Maritime Transport Ltd – as sole counsel, successfully defended a summary judgment application in the High Court in a bonus claim brought by a former COO.
      • Confidential advice – as sole counsel to a clinical commissioning group on the termination of a clinical services contract for failure to perform to KPIs.
      • Tasty Tasty Ltd -v- Simon Rowell – as sole counsel in the High Court, acting for an Applicant for an injunction to restrain the presentation of a winding up petition.
      • Bank Mellat -v- HM Treasury–  assisting the claimant to prepare a $4bn claim against the UK Government for loss in relation to breach of A1P1 ECHR rights by unlawful sanctions, in the Commercial Court (led by Amy Rogers KC).
      • Advising a foreign client on defending a £100,000 claim for breach of contract arising out of an employment relationship (led by Julian Wilson).
    • Employment

      Jen has deep experience acting in matters across the employment law spectrum, from business protection and high-value contractual litigation in the High Court, to whistleblowing and other statutory claims in the Tribunal.

      She is recognised in Chambers and Partners, where her clients have described her as having an “amazing… knowledge of the law” and “ability to absorb complex information quickly”, and being “client-friendly, hugely well-prepared and an outstanding advocate”.

      Jen regularly handles high-value, multi-week trials as sole counsel, often involving complex whistleblowing or discrimination allegations. She successfully defended a multimillion-pound whistleblowing claim in Costagliola Di Fiore v Introhive Ltd, in which she obtained the maximum costs awards available against the claimants (appeal ongoing). She successfully represented the respondent in both the Tribunal and EAT in Matthews v CGI [2024] EAT 38, a rare case in which the EAT upheld the fairness of a dismissal where the employer followed no formal dismissal procedure whatsoever.

      In the High Court, Jen is experienced in handling injunctive relief for clients, and in advising on and executing strategy in business protection cases (addressing restrictive covenants, team moves/unlawful conspiracy and the protection of confidential information). Jen is adept handling contractual disputes, particularly those involving complex facts or points of law. She recently acted in the F1 Aston Martin Racing team’s defence and counter claim to the multi-million pound litigation brought by its former Team Principal in relation to his resignation, bonus and shares (led by Daniel Stilitz KC).

      Jen also has deep experience in employment group litigation, acting for the claimants in the high-value and potentially industry-re-shaping equal pay litigation against Tesco (led by Sean Jones KC). The litigation redefined the law on equal pay in the EAT and CJEU on, among other things, the single source of employment; the burden of proof; job evaluation studies; and the correct approach to disclosure in discrimination claims.

      Cases

      Other examples of Jen’s recent work include:

      • Costagliola Di Fiore & Qadri -v- Introhive Ltd – successfully acted as sole counsel for the tech-sector respondent in a multiweek multi-million-pound whistleblowing and unfair dismissal trial; secured the maximum costs orders against both claimants in the ET; Jen continues to defend the respondent in the EAT in an appeal on the correct approach to rejecting an application for a witness order midtrial.
      • Guy Carpenter -v- Howden Tiger – assisted the reinsurance brokerage sector-claimants (led by Dan Oudkerk KC and Amy Rogers KC) in one of the largest High Court claims ever brought against former employees and competitors for unlawful means conspiracy and breach of restrictive covenants, following a team move raid on its business (48 employees including its Europe CEO, across several European offices).
      • Confidential High Court injunctive matter – restrictive covenants [settled] – acted for a tech company to enforce non-competes in a senior engineer’s employment contract (led by Amy Rogers KC).
      • Confidential discrimination & equal pay matter [settled] – acted for a female senior executive in an investment bank in relation to her claim for sex discrimination and equal pay.
      • Kabzinski -v- Vistajet International Ltd – successfully defended harassment and direct race discrimination allegations against a private jet company, proving that otherwise strong language was not unwanted or on the grounds of race in proper context. Successfully defended an application to extend time to hear an appeal in the EAT.
      • Matthews -v- CGI Ltd – as sole counsel, successfully defended a professional services-sector respondent against whistleblowing, discrimination and unfair dismissal claims. Successfully defended the EAT appeal [2024] EAT 38, on the correct approach to the fairness of dismissals without a procedure (a rare case where it was fair to dismiss without following any procedure), victimisation, causation and extensions of time.
      • Van Mackelenbergh -v- Maritime Transport Ltd – as sole counsel, successfully defended a summary judgment application in the High Court in a high-value contractual claim from a former COO.
      • Szafnauer -v- Aston Martin Racing Ltd – acted for the F1 AMR team in its High Court defence of a multimillion-pound claim alleging constructive dismissal and shareholding claim, and prosecuting its contractual counterclaim against its former Team Principal (led by Daniel Stilitz KC).
      • K Element & others -v- Tesco – acted for the Leigh Day claimants in their group litigation equal pay claims against Tesco (total estimated to be worth to be into hundreds of millions of pounds) with potential to reshape the industrial structure of the supermarket industry (led by Sean Jones KC and Andrew Blake).
    • Administrative & public

      Jen acts for both claimants and respondents in a wide range of regulatory and public law challenges. She is particularly interested in matters which fall at the intersection of public and commercial law.

      Jen is appointed to the Attorney General’s C Panel of Counsel.

      Cases

      Jen’s recent work includes:

      • Uber Britannia Limited -v- Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council – in the Court of Appeal, acting for an intervener (the private hire vehicle operator DELTA), on the issue of whether the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 requires a private hire vehicle to enter a contract with the passenger as a principal (led by Philip Kolvin KC).
      • Holly-Gale Millette -v- The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions – in the Court of Appeal, acting for the SoS to defend an appeal of a denial of bereavement benefits, on the issue of whether a declaration of incompatibility under the Human Rights Act 1998 can and should be made in relation to a finding of discrimination (led by Julian Milford KC).
      • Queensmill Trust v London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham – defining a claim for judicial review of Special Educational Needs school funding (led by Julian Milford KC and Jonathan Auburn KC).
      • Confidential acting for an international regulator/accreditation body – as sole counsel, advising on the defence of High Court contractual claims threatened by regulated persons who had their accreditation removed, in relation to the fairness of disciplinary proceedings.
      • Attorney General of Antigua and Barbuda -v- Alfa Nero – assisting on the defence to administrative proceedings in Antigua and Barbuda, challenging the acquisition and sale of the $120m superyacht Alfa Nero impacted by the US’s Russia sanctions programme (led by Paul Reichler and Richard Leiper KC).
      • NHS West Suffolk Hospital Review – as sole counsel on the Rapid Review team led by Christine Outram MBE investigating governance at the West Suffolk NHS Trust and its treatment of whistleblowing allegations (nationally reports of the controversial finger-printing of staff). The process led to resignations of the Chief Executive and other individuals from the Trust.
      • R (Vakil) -v- Secretary of State for Culture Media and Sport – acted for the claimants in a renewal application for judicial review of the SoS’s refusal to bring into force Part 3 of the Digital Economy Act 2017 (makes provision for securing that adult pornographic content online is not accessible to persons under the age of 18) (led by Jason Coppel KC).
      • Night Time Industries Association -v- Welsh Government  advised and drafting pre-action correspondence in relation to challenging coronavirus regulations, in light of their impact on the closure of adult clubs in Wales (led by Philip Kolvin KC).
      • Advising a local authority – sole counsel advising on the power to apply and merits of obtaining an Injunction under s.222 of Local Government Act 1972, in relation to restraining the operation of an unregistered independent school.
      • Wycombe District Council and South Chiltern District Council v SoS for the Ministry of Housing Communities & Local Government – representing two claimant local authorities in a claim against the SoS arising from a local government reorganisation (led by James Goudie KC).
    • Data protection

      Jen is experienced in all areas of Chambers’ data protection and information work. She is instructed on matters through to the Court of Appeal, as sole counsel.

      Cases

      Jen’s recent work includes:

      • Moss -v- Information Commissioner[2020] EWCA Civ 580 – in the Court of Appeal, as sole counsel, acting for the Commissioner in the case establishing the correct approach to making anonymity orders in the Information Tribunal.
      • JL -v- MSI Reproductive Choices – as sole counsel, obtaining strike out of claims brought under the UK GDPR, breach of confidence and misuse of private information.
      • As sole counsel, advising a client on whether a data breach had occurred within its organisation, remedial action to take, and possible regulatory outcomes.
      • As sole counsel, advising a client on the application of exemptions under the DPA 2018, in response to a subject access request made during litigation.
      • In the First-tier Tribunal, in two separate cases, acting for the Information Commissioner to resist appeals against a Monetary Penalty Notices for breaches of PECR 2003 in Holmes Financial Solutions v Information Commissioner, EA/2018/0030 and D M Design Bedrooms Ltd v Information Commissioner, EA/2018/0287.
    • What the directories say

      “Jen is an invaluable source of support in complex employment litigation matters, particularly involving whistle-blowing and data protection issues.” – Chambers and Partners

      “Jen achieves great results in tricky and novel cases. She is very thoroughly prepared and is calm and consistent. The results spoke for themselves in a judgment which exceeded our expectations.” – Chambers and Partners

      “Jen is very agile and easy to work with. Her submissions are top quality. Underestimate her at your peril.” – Chambers and Partners

      “Great to work with. Excellent attention to the detail. Extremely bright. Pragmatic and sensible.” “Hugely bright.” – Legal 500

      “Highly intelligent with sound judgement. Very thorough and well structured work.” – Legal 500

      “She is very thorough with her preparation, very collaborative and very bright. Her command of a complex or large brief is extremely good, particularly given her relative lack of seniority. Her advocacy is also excellent, and it is always clear that she is well prepared – very much in demand.” – Legal 500

      “A junior who is great on her feet and very client friendly.” – Legal 500 

      “Jen’s advice is extremely thorough and helpful.” – Legal 500

      “She is very thorough with her preparation, very collaborative and very bright. Her command of a complex or large brief is extremely good, particularly given her relative lack of seniority. Her advocacy is also excellent, and it is always clear that she is well prepared – very much in demand.” – Legal 500

      “An absolutely excellent barrister.” – Chambers & Partners

      “She is very calm and she is very determined.” – Chambers & Partners

      “She is an excellent advocate and she is one to watch for the future.” – Chambers & Partners

      “Great to work with. Excellent attention to the detail. Extremely bright. Pragmatic and sensible.”Legal 500 

      “Highly intelligent with sound judgement. Very thorough and well structured work. No perceived weakness.” – Legal 500 

      “She performs brilliantly with her seemingly instant grasp of complicated facts and her insightful advice.” – Chambers & Partners

      “She grasps complex matters very quickly, is exceptionally bright and a pleasure to work with.” – Chambers & Partners

      “An excellent lawyer, very thorough, innovative and user friendly.” – Legal 500

    • Additional information

      Jen is a former Grand Finalist of the World University Debating Championship 2012, for the Oxford Union Debating Society.

      Prior to becoming a barrister, Jen worked with international NGOs in Delhi, Berlin and London, as well in diversity outreach at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

      Awards

      • 2015, Bedingfield Scholarship (top BPTC award, The Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn)
      • 2015, BPTC Scholarship (BPP Law School)
      • 2014, David Karmel Award (top GDL award, The Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn)
      • 2014, Full GDL Tuition Pro Bono Scholarship (top GDL award, Kaplan Law School)
      • 2012, Brasenose College Prize for Finals Results (Brasenose College, University of Oxford)
      • 2012, Grand Finalist, World University Debating Championship (Oxford Union Society)

       Education

      • 2016, BPTC, BPP University, as a Bedingfield Scholar for The Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn
      • 2015, GDL, Kaplan Law School, as a Karmel Scholar for The Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn
      • 2013, MSc International Relations Research (Distinction), London School of Economics and Political Science
      • 2012, BA Philosophy Politics and Economics (First Class), University of Oxford, Brasenose College
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