Mentoring for underrepresented groups: Monckton Chambers in scheme run by ten commercial barristers’ chambers

Applications are now open for the mentoring scheme for underrepresented groups at the Bar run by Monckton Chambers with 9 other sets.

The purpose of the scheme is to support and encourage individuals from groups which are underrepresented at the Bar of England and Wales (and in particular the commercial bar) to pursue careers as barristers. Those underrepresented groups include women; people from minority ethnic backgrounds; people with disabilities; LGBT+ people; people who spent time in care; and people from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds.

In the scheme’s first year, over 400 applications were received and 150 mentees were matched with mentors. In addition to Monckton, the following Chambers are taking part this year: Blackstone, Brick Court, Essex Court, Fountain Court, Gatehouse, Keating, 7 King’s Bench Walk, One Essex Court and 3 Verulam Buildings.

The scheme will run between October 2021 and May 2022. It is open to all undergraduates and graduates from groups that are underrepresented at the Bar of England and Wales (and in particular the commercial bar) and who do not yet have a pupillage offer.

Successful applicants to join the scheme will be allocated a mentor, who will be a member of one of the participating sets of chambers. As part of the scheme, mentees will be offered:

  • Between three and five one-on-one meetings with their mentor.
  • A workshop on applications for pupillage.
  • Subject to developments in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic, one or more social events for mentors, mentees and members of the participating sets of chambers.

Joint Heads of Chambers Tim Ward QC and Philip Moser QC comment that “We’re delighted to be part of this great scheme, and to contribute to its growth. It plays an important role in making the profession more accessible for all.”

Applications will close at midday on 6 September 2021.

Further information on the scheme, including the email address for the application form, can be found here and the application form here.

CMA Panel of Standing Counsel Appointments – Monckton now six members strong

Congratulations to Josh Holmes QC, Julianne Kerr Morrison, Michael Armitage and Daisy Mackersie on their appointment to the CMA’s panel of counsel following an open competition. They join Rob Williams QC and Ben Lask, current Standing Counsel members from Monckton Chambers, bringing the number of Monckton appointees to six out of a total panel of eleven. All six Monckton members have appeared in some of the main challenges to regulatory competition decisions.

The CMA, the UK’s primary competition and consumer authority, is an independent non-ministerial government department with responsibility for carrying out investigations into mergers, markets and the regulated industries and enforcing competition and consumer law. The panel of counsel is intended to provide the CMA with a strong team of advocates and external legal advisers, who are enthusiastic about and committed to its work – but also able to give it detached and objective advice. The CMA has expanded its Standing Counsel to make sure it has the right number of members to assist in its work going forward. This reflects the growth in litigation undertaken by the CMA across all areas of activity as well as in anticipation of an increase in workload, following the UK’s departure from the EU and the establishment of the Office for the Internal Market and the Digital Markets Unit.

These appointments were made following an open competition with the consent of the Attorney General. They are for a term of 3 years with a possible extension of a further 3 years.
For further information, see CMA news release here.

Antonia Fitzpatrick and Clíodhna Kelleher to be Monckton tenants

The members of Monckton Chambers congratulate pupil barristers Clíodhna Kelleher and Dr Antonia Fitzpatrick on being invited to join Chambers following successful completion of pupillage. All are delighted they have accepted.

Prior to pupillage Antonia was Student Director of the School Exclusion Project. She was also, for six years, a member of St. John’s College and the History Faculty, University of Oxford, holding the positions of Junior Research Fellow and Departmental Lecturer in Medieval History.

Clíodhna Kelleher, a graduate of University College Dublin and Harvard Law School, was the recipient of the Irving R Kaufman Fellowship awarded by Harvard Law School and has won a number of debating championships including the John Smith Memorial Mace and the 2016 ‘Irish Times’ debate individual award.

Both Clíodhna and Antonia will become tenants on 01 October 2021.

Second Annual Summer Webinar Series: Competition Law in the UK and EU

Monckton Chambers is honored to partner with NERA Economic Consulting to cordially invite you to join us for the Second Annual Summer Webinar Series: Competition Law in the UK and EU.

Building on the success of our inaugural program, this year’s series will include four information-packed webinars held across four weeks, beginning on Thursday, 8 July 2021. We will bring together leading regulators and distinguished legal and economic experts to discuss, give insight, and share their expertise on some of the most significant competition challenges we face today.

Click here to register

Upcoming Summer Series Sessions:

Webinar 1 – 8 July, 3pm – 4pm  – Mergers: The CMA Rattling the Sabre

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has strengthened its approach to merger investigations, with new merger guidance, collaboration with international enforcers, and recent Competition Appeal Tribunal successes (such as Sabre/Farelogix and Facebook/Giphy). But has it gone too far? Or perhaps not far enough?

In this roundtable session, our experts will discuss where the CMA’s approach to merger control has changed, address how the change came about, and offer insight into reasons behind the change.

Grant Saggers, Director, NERA Economic Consulting

Eleni Gouliou, Director of Mergers, CMA
Alex Baker, Managing Director, Fingleton
Alison Berridge, Barrister, Monckton Chambers


Webinar 2 – 15 July, 3pm – 4pm  – Cartels: From Leniency to Litigation

Cartel enforcement continues apace in the UK, whether regarding information exchange, Resale Price Maintenance, or collective actions.

During this interactive session, our panel of distinguished experts will take a detailed look at recent enforcement cases, appeals made to the Competition Appeal Tribunal, and damages actions.

Tim Ward QC, Barrister, Monckton Chambers


Dr Anca Cojoc, Senior Consultant, NERA Economic Consulting
Ben Lasserson, Partner, Mishcon De Reya
Edward Coulson, Partner, BCLP


Webinar 3 – 22 July, 3pm – 4pm  – Privacy: Competition, Harm, and Damages

Privacy and GDPR issues are shaping the focus of competition authorities and regulators. They are also among the key battlegrounds in competition policy and litigation.

In this session, our experts will provide insight into the latest competition policy and litigation issues regarding privacy and GDPR, asking:

          • Where is the common ground?
          • Who occupies this common ground?
          • What do experiences elsewhere in the world mean for the UK?

Dr Lawrence Wu, President, NERA Economic Consulting

Dr Luisa Affuso, Chief Economist, Ofcom
Gerry Facenna QC, Barrister, Monckton Chambers
Tom Reynolds, Head of Economic Analysis, Information Commissioner’s Office


Webinar 4 – 29 July, 3pm – 4pm  – Abuse of Dominance: A ‘Whistl’-Stop Tour

The CMA has launched new investigations into digital markets, while at the Competition Appeal Tribunal some of the largest damage claims relate to abuse of dominance issues.

In this session, our leading experts will provide insight into recent cases and appeals that relate to abuses of dominance (e.g, Royal Mail vs Ofcom), the future of the AEC test, and how abuses may be mitigated through new regulation.

Josh Holmes QC, Barrister, Monckton Chambers

Jenny Haydock, Economics Director, CMA
Daniel Beard QC, Barrister, Monckton Chambers
Adrien Cervera-Jackson, Associate Director, NERA Economic Consulting

Click here to register

The Lawyer Barrister of the week: William Hooper

The Lawyer has recognised William Hooper as its “Barrister of the Week” for his role in the Court of Appeal’s recent decision in the long-running Gregor Fisken Limited v Bernard Carl dispute, one of The Lawyer’s Top 15 appeals for 2021, which was about the ownership of the original gearbox of a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO sold for US$ 44m in 2018. See website news 28 May.

The Lawyer article leads on the fact that Will, at just seven years call, “pulled off a remarkable result by defeating not just one experienced silk in a high-profile dispute, but two.” Will trusted his long-standing familiarity with the matter: “I had to be adaptable and flexible,” he said. “Speaking of the the degree of press attention the case had attracted, Will said “I had done the prep and I knew the case backwards. I just had to focus on my submissions and treat it like any other case.”

“Barrister of the Week” is selected by The Lawyer’s Litigation Tracker team. Subscribers can access the full article here.

Drew Holiner joins Panels of Arbitrators of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre and the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board International

Drew Holiner has been appointed to the Panels of Arbitrators of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) and the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board International (KCAB International), with immediate effect.

The SIAC commenced operations in 1991 as an independent, not-for-profit organisation, and has since established itself as one of the world’s leading arbitration institutions providing services to the global business community.  On 20 May 2021, the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation granted approval for the SIAC to be registered as a permanent arbitral institution under Russia’s Federal Law on Arbitration.  Read more here.

The KCAB was founded in 1966 and over the past 50 years has handled about 7,000 arbitration cases and 15,000 conciliation cases marking itself as a leading alternative dispute resolution centre.  On 20 April 2018, KCAB International was established as an independent division of the KCAB to meet the growing demand for cross-border commercial dispute resolution and focuses exclusively on international disputes, with offices in Seoul, Los Angeles, Hanoi and Shanghai.  Read more here.

The Lawyer Barrister of the week: Julianne Kerr Morrison

The Lawyer has recognised Julianne Kerr Morrison as its “Barrister of the Week” for her role in the Court of Appeal’s recent decision to uphold Ofcom’s £50m fine of Royal Mail and its finding that Royal Mail abused its dominant position by obstructing rival Whistl from breaking into the wholesale market for bulk mail delivery services (See website news 07 May.) Julianne joined the dispute, three years ago, back when Ofcom was still drafting a decision in its initial investigation.

Julianne appeared for Ofcom alongside leading counsel Josh Holmes QC and Nikolaus Grubeck in the proceedings in which all parties– Royal Mail, Ofcom and Whistl – were represented by leading and junior counsel from Monckton Chambers. Julianne is reported as commenting that such in-chambers combat, common in competition disputes, is no more than “healthy rivalry” that makes you work harder. “It’s great to be up against your colleagues. You know what they’re capable of, so it really makes you focus on doing the job well when you know people that you respect and like are going to be putting their best foot forward as well.”

The Lawyer article also highlights Julianne’s varied caseload which includes working on an anti-trust claim involving Google’s shopping service, data protection matters involving sexual violence victims, and citizenship deprivation cases in which British individuals are being stripped of their citizenships due to alleged association to certain terror groups or for time spent in ISIS controlled areas.

“Barrister of the Week” is selected by The Lawyer’s Litigation Tracker team. Subscribers can access the full article here.

In court this week – latest development in the interchange litigation and Care UK dispute re the CMA review of the care sector

Two separate teams from Monckton Chambers are in court this week on significant cases:

Monckton’s Kassie Smith QC and Fiona Banks, instructed by Humphries Kerstetter partner Mark Humphries, are representing hundreds of claimants against Visa and Mastercard, in what will be the latest development in the interchange litigation saga. Wednesday’s proceedings follow last month’s preliminary hearing to determine whether 40 Italy-based claimants are to be governed by English or Italian law. The Claimants are seeking summary judgment under Article 101(1) on all of their claims following the Supreme Court judgment of last summer. This application has huge implications for all “second wave” MIFs claims as, if it succeeds, only issues arising under Article 101(3) and as regards quantum will remain to be litigated in these cases. The application is being hotly contested by Visa and Mastercard.

Monckton’s Gerry Facenna QC and Daisy Mackersie, instructed by CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang disputes partner Tom Dane, are representing Care UK, one of the UK’s largest care home providers, defending a claim by the CMA in the Business and Property Courts that the administration fees charged by Care UK between 2013 and 2018 were contrary to EU consumer protection legislation and should be refunded. This dispute forms part of the CMA’s wider review into the care home sector and its efforts to bolster its consumer protection powers.

For subscribers to The Lawyer Litigation Tracker, further detail can be found here.

Melanie Hall QC, Brendan McGurk and David Gregory secure Court of Appeal victory against the landfill sector in a landmark test case

In the last of a series of challenges brought by the UK’s landfill sector which has generated a decade of litigation in the Administrative Court, Tax Tribunals and the Court of Appeal, Monckton Chambers has secured a further victory on behalf of HMRC.

In a combined judgment handed down by Rose LJ, Nugee LJ and Newey LJ, the Court of Appeal unanimously overturned the decisions of the UT which had decided that substantial refunds of landfill tax were payable across the landfill sector. The Court of Appeal found that material known as “fluff”, even when shredded (as Biffa had done) did not give rise to any legally relevant use, as contended by the sector on the basis of the Court of Appeal’s judgment in Waste Recycling Group v HMRC [2008] EWCA Civ 849, [2009] STC. The FTT had been right to conclude that fluff was merely carefully emplaced waste on which landfill tax was therefore payable. Biffa’s decision to shred that waste made no difference.

Link to judgment here.

Melanie Hall QC, Brendan McGurk and David Gregory represented HMRC.

Jeremy McBride prepares feasibility study for a European legal instrument to protect the profession of lawyer

Jeremy McBride has prepared for the European Committee on Legal Co-operation (CDCJ) of the Council of Europe a feasibility study on a new binding or non-binding, European legal instrument to protect the profession of lawyer.

This study examines the problems faced by lawyers in the 47 member States of the Council of Europe, the extent of these problems, the use made of the existing instruments in practice as well as the level of the protection and the manner in which this is currently offered to lawyers. It assesses the possible added-value and effectiveness of a possible future legal instrument in the field, the advantages and disadvantages or risks, according to the nature of such an instrument.

The Committee of Ministers’ Deputies, at its 1400th meeting held on 31 March 2021, took note of the study as well as the draft terms of reference of a subordinate committee of experts tasked with drawing up a draft instrument to be proposed in the context of the examination of the next Council of Europe programme and budget (2022-2025).