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Civil Liberties & Human Rights

Civil Liberties & Human Rights Solicitors

Susie Labinjoh
Susie Labinjoh
Alice Hardy
Alice Hardy
Cormac McDonough
Cormac McDonough
Jocelyn Cockburn
Jocelyn Cockburn
Nancy Collins
Nancy Collins
Sasha Barton
Sasha Barton

Civil liberties and human rights work includes many different areas of law, from miscarriages of justice to wrongdoing by the state.

From civil claims against the police and public authorities involving inquests, such as air pollution and deaths in prison or police custody, to other forms of state detention, such as mental health detention. We represent bereaved families where a death has been caused by actions or failures by individuals working for the state. You may be a protestor or victim of crime who needs our help.

Our Civil Liberties & Human Rights team received praise in the 2022 edition of the Chambers & Partners UK legal directory for their “proficiency in actions against authority… including the representation of political protesters, the victims of miscarriages of justice and individuals involved in military or death in custody inquests” as well as for being “highly experienced in judicial review claims and other complaint procedures”.

Chambers Top Ranked Firm 2022

Human rights solicitors

Our leading team of human rights specialists are driven to uphold principles and fight against oppression and injustice. For over 40 years we’ve been at the forefront of challenging unlawful actions by the state.

We seek accountability from the state and redress for those whose rights have been infringed. We passionately believe in helping clients from all walks of life, irrespective of their resources.

Our civil liberties and human rights lawyers specialise in gaining our clients compensation, apologies, admissions of wrongdoing and securing changes to protect you and others from similar breaches. As a London based human rights law firm, we have an exceptional track record of holding authorities to account, including:

  • Police forces
  • The Independent Office for Police Conduct
  • The Prison Service
  • The Ministry of Defence
  • The Crown Prosecution Service
  • Immigration detention centres and healthcare providers


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Pioneering work

Our human rights solicitors have been recognised for their pioneering work on some of the most sensitive and high-profile cases over many years.

They’re renowned for the work on miscarriage of justice compensation claims and we have unrivalled expertise in this highly specialised field. Our solicitors are also challenging the restrictive eligibility criteria for entry to the statutory scheme for compensation for miscarriage of justice in the Court of Appeal.

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Outstanding achievements

Our civil liberties & human rights lawyers are regularly recognised for their outstanding achievements. These include Nancy Collins, finalist in the Public Law category and later winner of the 2018 Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year. In the same year Joanna Bennett joined the HJA’s awards list as a Legal Aid Newcomer 2018.

In 2019, Jocelyn Cockburn was shortlisted for Human Rights Solicitor of the year at the Law Society Excellence awards. These, along with the team and firm accolades, highlight the quality of the team and the work we do for our clients.

Have your rights been infringed?

If you’ve suffered injustice at the hands of the State you don’t have to suffer in silence. Everyone has the right to be treated fairly, equally and with dignity.


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Independently recognised as leaders in the field

We’re top ranked in Chambers & Partners 2022 for Police Law and also ranked for Civil Liberties and Human Rights and Administrative and Public Law. We’re also ranked in Legal 500 for Civil Liberties and Human Rights and Administrative and Public Law.

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How to make a Civil Liberties or Human Rights claim

Contact our highly experienced team

Whatever your needs, our team of highly experienced solicitors can provide you with the help and advice you need. To seek advice from our specialist team of human rights solicitors contact our experienced team for free, either by telephone or requesting a call back.

We’ll gather the information to review your case

Once we have all the information we need we’ll  let you know if you have a case which we can assist with. Following us completing the case review, if you have a case which we can help with we will then arrange a time to meet or talk through to discuss your needs and particular situation in greater detail.

Help you with the best resolution

You will be allocated a solicitor specialising in the field to help you find the best possible resolution during a stressful and often sensitive time.

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Featured cases

Public inquiry

Our human rights lawyers were instructed by almost forty residents of Grenfell Tower, the surrounding walkways and local flats to represent them at the public inquiry into the Grenfell Tower fire in June 2017. Our human rights lawyers have worked closely with the housing team to prepare proposed terms of reference for the inquiry, to draft core participant applications and to advise our clients on the inquiry process. We represent bereaved family members and survivors.

Anti BNP

Hodge Jones & Allen represented three protesters who were arrested whilst taking part in a counter-demonstration against a rally by the British National Party outside of the Houses of Parliament on 1 June 2013. The police placed conditions on the counter-demonstration and arrested the claimants for breach of these conditions. Two of the claimants were prosecuted and the third sustained serious injuries. There were questions over whether the conditions were lawful and/or properly communicated to those attending the demonstration. All three have received damages from the defendant.

Protestors bringing claims against the police

Anti-English Defence League – We represented over 60 protesters who were arrested after participating in a demonstration against the English Defence League through Tower Hamlets in 2013. Among the claims were misfeasance, on the basis that the police arrested for intelligence gathering purposes, rather than a genuine belief that the protesters had committed an offence. The police have accepted that there is an issue over the legality of the arrests.

Snatch Land Rover Claimants

Hodge Jones & Allen represented four relatives of servicemen who were killed when travelling in Snatch Land Rovers in Iraq, described as ‘mobile coffins’ by British soldiers, since 2007. The case finally reached its conclusion with a financial settlement in December 2016 and the receipt of a negotiated apology in May 2017. The apology is significant as the MOD had not acknowledged failings in relation to Snatch (and did not admit liability) but in the apology they recognised that steps should have been taken sooner to replace Snatch Land Rover vehicles from theatre which could have saved lives.

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Frequently asked questions

How can you fund your case?

Funding a legal action through the courts yourself can be expensive. If you meet the Legal Services Commission’s financial criteria you may be eligible for public funding, known as Legal Aid.  Alternatively, if we think you have a strong case, we may be able to agree a No Win No Fee agreement with you.

What is a judicial review?

Judicial review is the process by which the courts can challenge the lawfulness of decisions made by public bodies.

For example, it could mean challenging a coroner’s verdict, a decision made by the Independent Police Complaints Commission, a decision by the CPS, or a decision made by the Ministry of Justice on eligibility for compensation claims for miscarriage of justice. For further details visit our page about judicial reviews.

What is public law?

This is the law which governs relationships between individuals and the government. Our day to day lives can be affected by public law which can include immigration, health, the environment and education. Public law regulates the relationship between the state and individuals.

How do you make a complaint against the police?

If the individual is 18 years or over then they must make a complaint themselves. This is straightforward if you have  the support of a specialist police complaints solicitor.

Further Reading
View all


    Actions Against the Police
    Human Rights
    Claims for Miscarriages of Justice