Sonali Naik KC listed in The Lawyer Hot 100 2023

Monday 23 January 2023

We are delighted to announce that Sonali Naik KC of Garden Court Chambers has been listed in The Lawyer magazine’s Hot 100 list.

The Hot 100 recognises excellence in the legal profession.

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In 2022, Sonali Naik KC appeared at the High Court with colleagues from Garden Court to argue her client should not be removed to Rwanda, in one of the most dramatic cases of the year.

Following an emergency injunction stopping the removal flight last summer, the High Court ruled in her client’s favour in December, reverting the decision back to the Home Secretary. In the judgment, the Court concluded it was, in principle, lawful to relocate asylum seekers to Rwanda, but that the Home Secretary had to properly assess each individual’s circumstances, and that in a number of the claims there had been a failure to do so.

Applications for permission to appeal against the judgment to the Court of Appeal were heard on 16 January 2023. Permission was granted on various grounds to a number of the claimants, including AS, represented by Sonali Naik KC leading a team from Garden Court Chambers. The grounds included whether the Divisional Court properly assessed the reliability of assurances given by the Rwandan government to respect the human rights of those removed; whether removal to Rwanda would breach the Refugee Convention; and whether the decision-making process adopted by the Home Secretary was procedurally unfair.

Sonali Naik was part of the team that won Highly Commended at The Lawyer’s Pro Bono Initiative of the Year in 2022, for seeking to assist members of the Afghan legal profession to secure UK visas.

In June 2022, Sonali Naik KC represented the UNHCR in a test case on the family reunion rights of child refugees (DM(Eritrea) v SSHD). Judgment is still pending.

Sonali was appointed as a silk in 2018. She won Highly Commended for Outstanding Contribution to Diversity & Inclusion at the Chambers Bar Awards 2019. She won Lawyer of the Year at the Diversity Legal Awards 2018. She was featured as The Times’ Lawyer of the Week in January 2018 and was a finalist for Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year in 2016.

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