Viewing: Public Law for Benjamin Harrison

Public law
Ben is a specialist public law barrister with a broad practice across the areas of:
• Court of Protection, mental capacity and community care law (where he is ranked as a ‘Rising Star’ by the Legal 500)
• Education law
• Inquests
• Planning law
• Prison law and actions against the police
Please see his specific CVs for further information about these areas.
Ben acts and advises in judicial review proceedings, both for and against public bodies, especially in the context of community care, prison and education law.
He recently appeared in the Divisional Court before Macur LJ and Foxton J (led by Philip Rule) in judicial review proceedings which challenged the decision of the Secretary of State for Justice to refuse their client, DK, compensation for a miscarriage of justice pursuant to section 133 of the Criminal Justice Act 1998. The judgment is reported as R (Kay) v Secretary of State for Justice [2021] EWHC 2125 (Admin).
Ben also provides expert advice and representation in proceedings concerning data protection and information rights, safeguarding, and the laws of the Church of England. Further information about which can be found below.
Ben was supervised by Philip Rule and Ian Brownhill during pupillage.
Safeguarding and appeals against decisions of the Disclosure Barring Service (DBS)
Ben has a growing practice linked to safeguarding issues, which stems largely from his extensive Court of Protection work, where he regularly advises on safeguarding obligations as they apply to local authorities under the Care Act 2014.
Ben has a growing practice linked to safeguarding issues, which stems largely from his extensive Court of Protection work, where he regularly advises on safeguarding obligations as they apply to local authorities under the Care Act 2014.
Ben accepts instructions appealing decisions of the Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) to include the names of individuals on the Children and Adults Barred Lists under the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006.
Recent work includes successfully representing a teacher before the Upper Tribunal whose name had been included on the Children’s Barred List. After considering the written representations Ben drafted—which raised arguments that the DBS had made mistakes in respect of both points of law and findings of facts on the basis of previous criminal proceedings—the DBS reviewed their decision, conceded the appeal, and removed his client’s name from the Children’s Barred List.
Ecclesiastical law
Ben has a niche expertise and interest in the law governing the Church of England.
He is a co-author of the leading textbook in this area, now in its fourth edition (principally authored by Mark Hill QC). In 2020, he was appointed the Editor of the Ecclesiastical Law Journal—a leading academic journal published by the Ecclesiastical Law Society and Cambridge University Press three times a year.
Ben is available to provide expert advice and representation in the following areas:
• Faculty proceedings before Consistory Courts
• Disciplinary matters arising under the Clergy Discipline Measure 2003
• Safeguarding issues
• Pastoral reorganisation
• The law of burials and exhumation
• Chancel repair liability
• The obligations of Parochial Church Councils in respect of their powers and duties, including those arising under charity law and data protection law
• Advice and representation in claims concerning breaches of Art. 9 ECHR (right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion)
Ben is well-placed to advise secular bodies who find themselves needing to grapple unexpectedly with the jurisdiction of Consistory Courts in the context of planning applications and appeals.
Before coming to the Bar
Ben read law at Pembroke College, Cambridge and graduated with a First-class degree in 2015.
He is a Gray’s Inn Scholar, and past winner of the Brick Court Team moot competition, as well as a finalist in the Quadrant Chambers’ mooting competition (both held at the University of Cambridge).
Ben worked for two years as a Paralegal and Compliance Officer at another leading set of barristers’ Chambers. During his time as a Paralegal, Ben assisted with legal research and drafting in the fields of administrative, criminal, employment, trusts, property, civil procedure and human rights law. He continues to draw on this wide experience when acting in his current practice areas.
Notable Cases
DA v EP and Ors [2020] EWCOP 74
Long running welfare application in the Court of Protection which culminated in a five-day trial to determine P’s best interests. Issues included P’s care and support, residence and contact with others. Other issues included the appointment and powers of a professional health and welfare deputy (a solicitor) to make decisions on behalf of P. The Official Solicitor instructed Leading Counsel.
Re GA (challenge to standard authorisation) [2020] EWFC B67
Court of Protection proceedings which involved issues including a risk of P being unlawfully moved out of the jurisdiction and being overmedicated in her previous placement. Art. 8 ECHR rights to family life also in issue. A bespoke placement was ordered to be in P’s best interests in terms of her residence and care. A complex transition was overseen by the court. The CCG instructed Leading Counsel.
R (Kay) v Secretary of State for Justice [2021] EWHC 2125 (Admin)
Judicial review against the decision of the Secretary of State for Justice to refuse compensation for a miscarriage of justice pursuant to section 133 of the Criminal Justice Act 1998.
Judicial review against the decision of the Secretary of State for Justice to refuse compensation for a miscarriage of justice pursuant to section 133 of the Criminal Justice Act 1998.
Recommendations
“Ben is excellent when dealing with emotional and difficult parties and clients and is adept at taking the heat out of the situation and enabling productive inter-party discussions. I find Ben very responsive and he is able to respond to queries and questions in short order. He pays attention to the detail, doesn’t miss anything and his drafting is excellent.”
Legal 500 2022 - Court of Protection and Community Care
Appointments
Editor of the Ecclesiastical Law Journal
Awards
BPTC Scholarship: The William Shakespeare Memorial Award, Gray’s Inn
BPTC Scholarship, BBP University
Foundation Scholarship, Pembroke College, Cambridge
College Prize, Pembroke College, Cambridge
Winner of the Brick Court Team Moot, University of Cambridge (2015)
Finalist in the Quadrant Chambers Fledglings Moot Competition, University of Cambridge (2015)
Memberships
The Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn
Ecclesiastical Law Society
Qualifications
Law: M.A. (Cantab.)
Publications
Ecclesiastical Law (OUP, 4th ed.)
March 2018
“Ecclesiastical Law”, by Mark Hill QC, has established itself as the leading authority on the laws of the Church of England. In this fourth edition, Ben co-authored two Chapters: chapter 3 (“The Parish”) and chapter 6 (“Clergy Discipline”). Other co-authors for this volume include Professor Norman Doe and Matthew Chinery).
The Jackson Reforms and the future of access to justice: an examination (LexisNexis Future of Law Blog)
13 June 2018
An article examining the current climate of access to justice in light of the Jackson reforms, and analyses what the future holds when it comes to extending the rule of law.
No5’s Philip Rule and Benjamin Harrison appeared in a claim seeking judicial review
1 June 2021
On 26 and 27 May 2021, No5’s Philip Rule and Benjamin Harrison appeared in the Divisional Court in a claim seeking judicial review of the decision of the Secretary of State for Justice to refuse their client, DK, compensation for a miscarriage of justice pursuant to section 133 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988. They were instructed by Martin Bridger, of Instalaw.

Latest News & Publications

The client was appealing a decision of the Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) to include his name on the Children’s Barred List...

Date: Wed, 12 May 2021
The Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) has recently published guidance (July 2020) which aims to help people across social care and health settings apply the best interests decision making framework contained in the Mental Capacity Act 2005 for or on behalf of people who lack capacity in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic....

Date: Tue, 28 Jul 2020
In R (on the application of EG) v The Parole Board of England and Wales and Secretary of State for Justice [2020] EWHC 1457 (Admin) the High Court held that the Parole Board Rules 2019 contain a power for the Parole Board to appoint a litigation friend to act on behalf of prisoners who lack capacity to conduct their parole review....

Date: Mon, 15 Jun 2020