Free Hybrid Event: Avoiding procedural pitfalls in civil claims against public authorities

Friday 20 October 2023

This event was brought to you by the Garden Court Chambers Civil Liberties & Human Rights Team.

Date: Friday 20 October 2023
Time: 6pm-7:30pm, followed by drinks & networking
Venue: Chambers & Online  
Cost: Free
Areas of Law: Civil Liberties and Human Rights , Inquests and Inquiries

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This event looked at how to overcome the challenges posed when bringing damages claims against public authorities. The panel discussed fixed recoverable costs., probate issues when bringing a claim under Article 2 of the European Convention of Human Rights, as well as leave under section 329 of the Criminal Justice Act and leave under Section 139 of the Mental Health Act 1983.


Una Morris (Chair), Barrister, Garden Court Chambers
Una Morris is a leading civil liberties, human rights and public law practitioner with a diverse practice including civil claims for damages, inquests and inquiries and judicial review. Una’s significant expertise extends across a range of different areas, including claims against the police and public authorities, abuse claims, data and privacy, protest rights, youth justice and child rights, prisoners’ rights and discrimination. Una co-convenes the Civil Liberties Team and is Public Access qualified.

Stephen Simblet KC, Garden Court Chambers
Stephen's practice focuses on individual rights in four discrete areas. These are civil claims against the police and public authorities; inquests; mental health and Court of Protection; public law/judicial review. Stephen specialises in claims for false imprisonment, assault, malicious prosecution and misfeasance in public office against the police, prison authorities and psychiatric hospitals. He was one of the lead advocates representing bereaved families in the Hillsborough Inquests and has appeared as advocate in a number of public inquiries. 

Sarah Hemingway, Barrister, Garden Court Chambers
Sarah regularly represents claimants in civil jury trials. She appears at the county courts, high courts and Court of Appeal. A major part of Sarah's practice involves civil claims against public bodies, with a particular focus on actions against the police. She is experienced in jury trials involving false imprisonment, assault, malicious prosecution and other torts and regularly advises on similar claims. Sarah's inquest work includes deaths in custody, deaths occurring soon after contact with police and health authorities, and deaths at work or those involving prospective prosecutions by the Health and Safety Executive.

Stephen Clark, Barrister, Garden Court Chambers
Stephen specialises in complex, multi-disciplinary work which draws on the full range of his flourishing practice. He works across a broad spectrum of practice areas from judicial review, immigration and asylum, inquests, actions against state authorities, prison law and community care. Stephen acts in the full range of civil work against public authorities – ranging from claims against the Police and Home Office for false imprisonment and Human Rights Act breaches to post-inquest civil claims against prison and healthcare authorities. Stephen acts in complex inquests across detained and community settings, particularly those involving mental health elements.

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