We have an unrivalled track record helping claimants, defendants, interested parties or intervening third parties in administrative and public law issues across a variety of proceedings, including judicial review, tribunal proceedings, governmental and other inquiries, regulatory investigations, disciplinary proceedings involving public bodies and statutory appeal work.

We use our breadth of experience in domestic law and European Convention on Human Rights matters, environmental regulation, and freedom of information legislation across multiple sectors to assure the best results for our clients.

When acting in litigation for the private sector, we deal with the substantive legal issues involved in government regulation and decision making within a legal and strategic framework. This preserves ongoing relationships with government and other public bodies important to our clients’ businesses.

In addition to the above, we participate in our firm’s global procurement practice by assisting in procurement litigation. Where a tender process is contested, we have the expertise to work with our clients successfully to challenge the award decision or to defend the procuring authority.

Our practice also includes representing, on a pro bono basis, a range of charities as third party interveners before courts of first instance to the Supreme Court.


External Recognition

Herbert Smith Freehills’ Administrative and Public Law practice is consistently ranked in Band 1 of the Legal 500 and Chambers UK legal directories.

Chambers UK Legal Guide 2023:

“The depth of advice provided by the team is unparalleled.”

“Herbert Smith Freehills understand the commercial imperatives, stay well on top of the detail and are able to respond within set timescales.”

“They are one of the best firms in commercial judicial reviews.”

Legal 500 Rankings 2023:

“Excellent tactical awareness and a thorough knowledge of public law issues.”

‘Exceptionally thorough.”

“One of the few truly excellent public law teams in the city with depth at both partner and associate level.”


Examples of Recent Work

  • Gina Miller v Prime Minister – Representing John Major in his intervention in the above case in which he made submissions as to why the Prime Minister’s advice to Her Majesty the Queen to prorogue Parliament from some point between 9 – 12 September to 14 October 2019 was unlawful.
  • Church of England – Representing the Church of England in its role as a core participant in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse
  • Stagecoach – Acting for Stagecoach on public procurement litigation and judicial reviews concerning the East Midlands and South Eastern rail franchises
  • KPMG – Acting in the successful defence of a judicial review concerning KPMG’s independent review of a UK bank following allegations of failings in the sale of Interest Rate Hedging Products
  • Cuadrilla Resources Limited – Successfully defending a total of five judicial reviews and two statutory challenges to the grant of consents, permits and planning permission for exploration works for hydraulic fracturing
  • Centre for Advice on the Individual Rights in Europe – Acting in a number of interventions in the Supreme Court, including regarding a decision of the Secretary of State relating to human trafficking.