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  • Jason Coppel QC
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  • Human Rights
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  • Media Law
  • Procurement and State Aid
  • Public
  • Activity from
    Jason Coppel

  • Recent cases

    11KBW Barristers in “Top 20 Cases”

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    Jason Coppel QC and Patrick Halliday successfully argue that local campaigners do not have standing to claim for judicial review of procurement matter

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  • Article

    Procurement Law Update: To tender or not to tender?

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    Procurement Law Update

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  • News

    Nine 11KBW barristers feature in The Lawyer’s “Top 20 Cases” for 2017

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    11KBW Nominated in 4 categories in the Legal 500 UK 2017 Awards

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Jason Coppel QC

Jason Coppel

Jason Coppel QC

Practice Overview

Jason Coppel’s practice is predominantly in procurement, information and public law, with particular emphasis on EU law and human rights issues. He is ranked by the directories as a leading barrister in administrative law, civil liberties, EU law and procurement law. Until he took silk in March 2013, he had been a member of the Attorney General’s A panel for Civil Litigation.  He has been called to the Bar of Northern Ireland.

Chambers and Partners says about Jason: “he is very, very sound, and very well-liked by clients”, “is extremely able, and a very impressive opponent”, “provides astoundingly clear and thoughtful written advice, and is very sensible”, “extremely good technically and very knowledgeable in public procurement”, “extremely good, feared as an opponent and a very welcome member of the team when an ally”, “he is crisp, to the point and doesn’t go on. He’s sophisticated on information systems, and delivers a seamless service” and he “has a detailed understanding of information law, as well as an ability to provide clear strategic advice. You can have confidence in his judgment”.

Jason is described in Legal 500 as a "a creative thinker and a determined fighter in court", "he is popular with clients and very easy to work with", "he has outstanding knowledge and experience of human rights law", "he always brings a fresh perspective to a case", "he knows which points to emphasise for maximum effect", "very measured advocate who is taken seriously by the judges" and as having a "rare ability to make difficult concepts sound straightforward", "market leader in the making".

Jason was nominated for the award of Human Rights and Public Law Silk of the Year in the Chambers Bar Awards 2015 and for the award of Barrister of the Year in The Lawyer Awards 2016.

Jason was The Times Lawyer of the Week on 18 February 2016:  see article here.

Public Law and Human Rights

Jason’s notable recent cases include:

Gina Miller v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union
[2017] UKSC 5
Represented the Government defending litigation to litigation to establish whether the Government is entitled to notify the European Council under Article 50 TEU of the UK’s intention to leave the EU without the prior authority of Parliament

R (Justice for Health) v Secretary of State for Health
[2016] EWHC 2338 (Admin)
Represented NHS Employers defending the challenge by junior doctors to the implementation by employers of a new contract of employment.

R (Keep Wythenshawe Special Ltd) v NHS Central Manchester CCG
[2016] EWHC 17 (Admin)
Represented Stockport NHS Trust, as Interested Party, defending its designation as a specialist hospital in Greater Manchester.

R (Gulf Centre for Human Rights) v Prime Minister
[2016] EWHC 1323 (Admin)
Represents the claimant challenging recent amendments to the Ministerial Code which remove the obligation upon ministers to comply with international law and uphold the administration of justice.

R (A and B) v Secretary of State for Health
[2015] EWCA Civ 771; [2016] 1 WLR 331
Represents Secretary of State in a claim seeking to establish an NHS duty to fund abortions for women travelling to England from Northern Ireland.  Pending before the Supreme Court.

R (Keyu) v Foreign Secretary and Secretary of State for Defence
[2015] UKSC 69; [2015] 3 W.L.R. 1665
Represented the Secretaries of State defending claim for a public inquiry into killings by British forces in Malaya in 1948.

R (Rotherham MBC and others) v Secretary of State for Business
[2015] UKSC 6
Represented local authorities in Merseyside and South Yorkshire in public and EU law litigation challenging the Government’s allocation of EU regional aid for 2014-20, which was recently determined by the Supreme Court.

R (Moore) v Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government
[2014] EWHC 3592 (Admin)
Represented allotment holders at Farm Terrace, Watford in successful challenge to the Government’s consent to the sale of their allotments.

Chester and McGeoch v Lord President of the Council
[2014] AC 271 (SC)
Represented the Government, successfully defending EU law claims by convicted prisoners claiming the right to vote in European Parliament and local elections.

Children’s Rights Alliance for England v Secretary of State for Justice
[2013] EWCA Civ 34 (CA), [2013] 1 WLR 3667; [2013] HRLR 17; (2013) 157 (7) SJLB 31
Represented the Equality and Human Rights Commission intervening in support of a claimed legal duty to inform victims that their human rights had been breached.

Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis v ZH
[2013] EWCA Civ 69 (CA)
Represented the Equality and Human Rights Commission intervening in a case raising novel issues of application of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and the human rights of mentally incapacitated persons.

Re Landsbanki
Icelandic Supreme Court, October 2011
Represented UK and Dutch local authorities, the Financial Services Compensation Scheme and the Dutch National  Bank defending a constitutional challenge to Icelandic bankruptcy law. The Supreme Court upheld the priority of depositors to receive debts owed by bankrupt Icelandic banks.

Public Procurement

Jason is widely recognised as one of the leading silks practising in procurement law.  He has conducted procurement litigation since 1998 and has been instructed in many of the landmark domestic cases.  He also has an extensive advisory practice, specialising in issues such as the application of procurement law to development agreements and other property deals, the permissible grounds for variation of existing public contracts and the contracting authority status of quasi-public bodies such as universities.
His notable recent cases in this field include:

R (Fair Crime Contract Alliance) v Lord Chancellor; Kaim Todner and ors v Ministry of Justice Represented claimant criminal law solicitors in judicial review and Part 7 CPR challenges to the tender process for duty provider contracts, the largest and most complex procurement to be conducted by a Government Department.  The Lord Chancellor eventually abandoned the “two tier” policy and so the tender procedure to which it had given rise.

Edenred (UK Group) Limited v HM Treasury and others [2015] UKSC 45; [2015] PTSR 1088 Represented claimant service provider in challenge to Government decision to use National Savings & Investments to deliver “childcare accounts” for new childcare subsidy policy.  Supreme Court decided issues relating to intra-government arrangements and variation of existing public contracts.

Heron Bros v. Central Bedfordshire Council [2015] EWHC 604 (TCC); [2015] EWHC 1009 (TCC); [2015] BLR 514 Represented the defendant Council in case determining important procedural issues regarding service of procurement law claims.

Bristol Missing Link v Bristol City Council [2015] EWHC 866 (TCC) [2015] PTSR 1470;  Represented claimant not-for-profit organisation successfully resisting application to lift an automatic suspension which prevented conclusion of a contract for support services to victims of domestic violence.

Prime plc v NHS Sandwell and West Birmingham CCG [2016] Represented defendants to claim for wasted bid costs arising out of abandoned tender procedure for primary care medical centres.

NP Aerospace v Ministry of Defence [2014] EWHC 2741 (TCC) Represented claimant in challenge to “abnormally low” tender challenge to the award of a contract for conversion of military vehicles.  

JBW Ltd v Ministry of Justice [2012] 2 CMLR 10 (CA) Represented the MoJ in a challenge to a tender procedure for the procurement of bailiff services. The Court of Appeal ruled on the definition of services concession contracts and on the scope for implied contract challenges to tender procedures.

Guildhouse UK Ltd v West Sussex PCT (2012) Represented the claimant in a claim for wasted bid costs arising out of cancellation of a PFI contract. Case settled shortly before Court of Appeal hearing.

Mermec Ltd v Network Rail Infrastructure Ltd [2011] EWHC 1847 (TCC) (HC) Represented  Network  Rail  on  a  successful  application  to  strike-out  a  claim  on  limitation  grounds, applying the principles in Uniplex and SITA.

J Varney & Sons Ltd v Hertfordshire County Council [2011] BLGR 770 (CA) Represented  the  claimant on  a claim  for damages  for lack  of  transparency  of  award  criteria  and weightings,  failure  to  investigate  and acceptance  of  abnormally low tenders and unlawful contract variation.

Greenwich Community Law Centre v Greenwich LBC [2012] EWCA Civ 496 CA Represented Greenwich Council on a challenge to decisions on funding for community legal advice, based on the public sector equality duty and alleged breaches of procurement law, including refusal to accept late tenders.

Wall AG v Stadt Frankfurst [2010] ECR I-2815 (CJEU) Represented the UK (Office of Government Commerce) in a dispute regarding setting aside of contracts found to have been concluded in breach of the EU principle of transparency.

European Union Law

Before  joining  Chambers,  Jason  completed  an  LLM  in  European  and  International  Law,  co-wrote Butterworths’ EC Law for UK Lawyers and published various academic articles on different aspects of EU law. He continues to practise across a wide range of EU law fields, including, in particular, discrimination, free movement, social security, medicines regulation and commercial agents.  His recent notable cases include:

R (Shindler) v Lord President of the Council
[2016] HRLR 14 (CA)
Represented the defendant in proceedings to challenge the franchise for the EU Referendum by long-term expatriates living in other EU Member States.

Commission v UK (right to reside test)
C-308/14; 14 June 2016
Represented the UK Government in high profile Commission infraction complaining of UK rules on migrants’ entitlement to welfare benefits.

Mirga v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
[2016] 1 WLR 481 (SC)
Represented Secretaries of State defending migrants' claims for entitlement to welfare benefits on EU and human rights grounds.

Newby v Food Standards Agency
[2016] 3 CMLR 6 
Represent FSA in challenge to EU rules on meat production. The case was referred to the CJEU and there were several hearings about interim relief pending the CJEU’s ruling and then about implementation of the CJEU's 2015 ruling.

Chester and McGeoch v Lord President of the Council
[2014] AC 271 (SC)
Represented the Government, successfully defending EU law claims by convicted prisoners claiming the right to vote in European Parliament and local elections.

R (Sanneh) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
[2015] 3 WLR 1867
Represents defendants successfully resisting multiple challenges to regulations which remove benefits entitlement from claimants with a right of residence under the CJEU ruling in Zambrano. Now pending in the Supreme Court.

Patmalniece v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
[2011] 1 WLR 783 (SC)
Represented Secretary of State in Supreme Court challenge to the right to reside test for entitlement to welfare benefits.

R (Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry) v MHRA
(2010) 115 BMLR 26 (CJEU)
Represented the MHRA on challenge to provision of incentives given by the NHS to GPs to prescribe generic medicines.

Information Law

Jason has developed an extensive practice in data protection and freedom of information cases, and prior to taking silk he was a member of the Attorney General’s Freedom of Information Panel and of the panel of counsel instructed by the Information Commissioner. His notable cases include:

Magyar Helsinki Bizottság v Hungary
(app. 18030/11)
Represented the UK Government intervening before the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights on the issue of whether Article 10 ECHR confers a right to freedom of information.

R (Catt) v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis
[2015] 2 WLR 664 (SC)
Represented Home Secretary intervening in judicial review challenge to police policies on recording and retention of information. Recently decided by Supreme Court.

R (T) v Greater Manchester Police, Home Secretary & Secretary of State for Justice
[2015] AC 49 (SC)
Represented the Secretaries of State in a landmark challenge to disclosure of conviction and caution information on criminal records checks.

Edem v Information Commissioner and Financial Services Authority
[2014] EWCA (Civ) 92 (CA)
Represented FSA in appeal regarding the definition of “personal data” in the Data Protection Act 1998 and the impact of the Durant case.

API v Commission
[2011] 2 AC 359
Represented the UK Government in leading case on access to information held by the EU institutions.

L v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis
[2010] 1 AC 410 (SC)
Represented the Home Secretary in Supreme Court Article 8 ECHR challenge to disclosure of personal information on criminal records certificates.

Pensions Law

Jason has advised extensively on pension laws issues, in particular the application of EU discrimination and European human rights law to pension scheme rules, and the powers of local authorities and other public bodies under public sector pension schemes.  He has advised the PPF on issues regarding its levy and the Secretary of State on reforms to the Tata Steel pension scheme.  His recent notable cases include:

Hampshire v Board of the Pension Protection Fund
[2016] EWCA Civ 786
Represented Secretary of State for Work and Pensions intervening in challenge to the “cap” on PPF compensation. Referred to the CJEU.

Walker v Innospec Ltd
[2015] EWCA Civ 1000, [2016] ICR 182
Represented Secretary of State for Work and Pensions in claim for backdated survivors’ pension benefits by homosexual couple.

Jason is author of The Human Rights Act 1998: Enforcing the European Convention in the Domestic Courts (Wiley, 1999), co-editor of Local Authorities and the Human Rights Act (Butterworths, 1999) and co-author of Administrative Court Practice (OUP, 2nd ed., 2008).


Brasenose College, Oxford University, B.A. (Law), First Class Honours (1990)

European University Institute, Florence, LLM in European, Comparative and International Law (1992)


French and Italian

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Jason Coppel

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