“A stellar performer.” Legal 500
“A fearless advocate” Legal 500
“He does the difficult cases and makes them seem easy” Chambers and Partners
“A fighter who is at his best in the toughest battles” Chambers and Partners
Vikram is a highly accomplished advocate who has appeared in many significant cases in the higher courts up to the Supreme Court in a wide range of fields. He is known for pushing the boundaries of the law forward, and has appeared in the landmark cases of Denton v White in commercial law and in Re M and Aintree v James in human rights. As well as his acute appreciation of the direction in which the law might develop, he is renowned for his extremely effective cross examination.
His cases are often high profile and attract national media attention, and was The Times’ Lawyer of the Week in March 2013, whilst still a junior.
His practice is wide-ranging, spanning Public law and Human Rights, Financial Services, Commercial litigation and Arbitration, Construction, Media law, Regulatory and Disciplinary, Tax, and Litigation Funding and Costs.
He is specifically recommended in the legal directories in Administrative and Public Law, Regulatory and Disciplinary Law, Court of Protection (Welfare), and Costs.
Vikram was previously Junior Counsel to the Crown (A Panel), retained by the government to act against silks, having previously been on the B and C Panels.
He taught Administrative law at Cambridge University and Tort and Criminal law at Oxford University for a number of years. Before that Vikram studied undergraduate law and medicine at Cambridge before completing the BCL in one year (obtaining the joint highest first in Philosophical Foundations of the Common Law, and firsts in Remedies in Contract and Tort and in Criminal Justice and Penology) and then completing his medical degree at Oxford.
Vikram’s busy public law practice covers a large number of areas including mental health, national security and immigration, prisons, financial services regulation, local government, civil liberties and human rights, and appears on behalf of claimants, local authorities, and central government.
Vikram is a member of the Executive Committee of ALBA.
R (Smith) v Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and Secretary of State for Justice  EWHC 2208 (QB): whether breach of A8 and A14 to refuse bereavement damages to cohabitees
R (Maggs) v North Bristol NHS Trust and HFEA and Department of Health (2015): human rights challenge to refusal to continue to store claimant’s gametes, resulting in change in HFEA guidance
R (Nyoni) v Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills  EWHC 3533 (Admin)  ELR 88: legality of the government’s interim policy for student loans for those not settled in the UK, issued after Tigere
R (Tigere) v Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills  UKSC 57  1 WLR 3820: whether a student loan policy that required the right to stay permanently violated the right to education read with Article 14
R (Tracey) v Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Secretary of State for Health  EWCA Civ 822  QB 543: whether Article 8 requires consultation with the patient before a DNACPR decision is made, and whether a national DNACPR policy is mandatory
Westscott Financial Services Ltd v Financial Ombudsman Service  EWHC 3972 (Admin): whether, in refusing a stay of the complaints, the FOS had failed to take account of the FSCS litigation in the Commercial Court
R (Kebede) v Secretary of State for Business, Immigration and Skills  EWHC 2396 (Admin)  PTSR 92: whether breach of A2P1 and A14 to deny the Claimant a student loan
R (Kadri) v Birmingham City Council and Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 1432  1 WLR 1755: whether local authorities bound by age assessment decision of SSHD, and whether splitting the system of age assessment for asylum seekers between central and local government was in breach of the EU principle of effectiveness
MD (Afghanistan) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 194  1 WLR 2422: whether appropriate to appeal to CA when an application for permission to claim judicial review had been refused on the papers.
R (Arogundade) v Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills (Administrative Court): whether the requirement for “ordinary residence” in the Education (Student Support) (No. 2) Regulations 2008 implicitly requires lawful residence
R (Moore) v Skipton Fund Ltd and Secretary of State For Health  EWHC 3070 (Admin) (2011) 117 BMLR 185: whether Hepatitis C compensation scheme lawful
RH v South London & Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and Secretary of State for Justice  EWCA Civ 1273 (2011) 117 BMLR 47: whether the requirement under MHA 1983 s75(3) that an application should satisfy a tribunal that a restriction order should cease breached the applicant’s rights under Article 8 ECHR
R (V) v South London & Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and Croydon LBC 7 April 2010 LBC  EWHC 742 (Admin) (2010) 13 CCL Rep 181: whether the relevant circumstances under MHA 1983 s11(4) were only those as they appeared to the AHMP at the time of the application for admission for treatment
Vikram has a successful practice acting in all areas of medical law and human rights, and is a recognised expert in such cases, his medical background proving invaluable.
Briggs v Briggs  EWCOP 53: landmark case – the first case in which a court has authorised withdrawal of Clinically Assisted Nutrition and Hydration from a clinically stable patient in a Minimally Conscious State
M v N  EWCOP 76  COPLR 88: first case in which a court has authorised withdrawal of Clinically Assisted Nutrition and Hydration from a patient in a Minimally Conscious State
Re Ashya King  EWHC 2964 (Fam)  2 FLR 855: whether Ashya should be permitted to travel to Prague for proton therapy
Sandwell & West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust v CD  EWCOP 23  COPLR 650: general guidance for out of hours hearings in Serious Medical Treatment cases
Aintree University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust v James  UKSC 67  AC 591: the meaning of “futile” in relation to medical treatment
W v M  EWHC 2443 (Fam)  1 WLR 1653: whether the court had jurisdiction to authorise withdrawal of food and water from a patient in minimally conscious state
R (AN) v Secretary of State for Justice  EWHC 1921 (Admin)  ACD: challenge to the placement of a high security prisoner who had been under a control order in a single cell based on an alleged breach of articles 3 and 8 in HMP Belmarsh
Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs v Downs  EWCA Civ  3 CMLR 46  Env LR 7: challenge to the UK pesticides regime as being in breach of Directive 91/414
R (Ross) v West Sussex Primary Care Trust  EWHC 2252 (Admin) (2009) 106 BMLR 1: whether Trust was entitled to refuse funding for potentially life-extending drug
R (Nathan Brooks) v Secretary of State for Justice  EWHC 3622 (QB)  Prison LR 266: whether prison service or MOJ had duty of care towards prisoner where NHS is providing the medical care
R (Page) v Secretary of State for Justice  EWHC 2026 (Admin); (2007) ACD 100: whether refusal to exercise Royal Prerogative of Mercy for the early release of a prisoner who has been misled as to his correct release date was lawful
R (Broadbent) v Parole Board (QBD) 27 May 2005  EWHC 1207 (Admin); The Times 22 June 2005: whether t a charge and pending prosecution alone could justify a conclusion that there was an unacceptable risk of reoffending
Vikram has a successful commercial litigation practice covering commercial dispute resolution, banking, fraud, energy, insurance/reinsurance, procurement, construction, and media and entertainment.
Domestic Arbitration (2017) (Arbitrator)
Commercial Court (2017): Multimillion pound claim for damages for breach of exclusive distribution contract against two national postal services (ongoing)
International Arbitration (2016) (Counsel)
EMW Law LLP v Halborg  EWHC 2526 (Ch): whether solicitor obliged to disclose to agent without prejudice negotiations with the other side
Blankley v Central Manchester and Manchester Children’s University Hospitals NHS Trust  EWCA Civ 18  1 WLR 4307: whether supervening mental incapacity frustrates a conditional fee agreement
Domestic Arbitration (2015) (Counsel)
Jowhari v NHS England  EWHC 4197 (QB): whether NHS England owes a statutory duty or a duty in negligence to compensate dentists for economic loss arising out of negligent use of its powers
Denton v T H White Ltd  EWHC 906  1 WLR 3926: reinterpretation of the Mitchell case on noncompliance with court orders
Parker v Shoreham Port Authority (2013, TCC): contractual debt claim for expenses of referring dispute to expert determination
Armstrong v Pope & Co (2011): professional negligence claim against a solicitor and barrister
Care Aspirations v Sutton & Merton Primary Care Trust (2010): High Court debt claim against Trust arising out of care home facilities
Hugh James (A firm) v Smith (Chancery Division) (2009): restitution claim for mistaken payment
Re Anglian Windows (2009) dispute whether guarantees were “contracts of insurance” within s20 of Schedule 2 to the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000
Roadrunner Properties Ltd v Dean  EWCA Civ 1816  1 EGLR 73: appeal against judge’s interpretation of expert engineering evidence in context of Party Wall Act 1996;
Discain Project Services Limited v Opecprime Development Limited  BLR 402 (2001) 3 TCLR 16: whether breach of natural justice was a defence to an application for summary judgment in respect of an adjudicator’s award
He is a member of COMBAR, and LCLCBA.
Vikram is a “renowned” (Chambers and Partners) regulatory silk who has appeared in a very wide range of tribunals, for Applicants and Respondents – for instance the General Dental Council, General Medical Council, Immigration Services Tribunal, Care Standards Tribunal, and General Social Care Council. He also has acted in a number of appeals to the High Court from disciplinary bodies.
Vikram is a member of the Executive Committee of ARDL.
Legal Clerk to the independent Appeals Body to Phoneypayplus, the premium rate regulator.
Bass and Ward v Solicitors Regulation Authority  EWHC 2012 (Admin): appeal against finding that solicitors had breached Rule 5 of the Code of Conduct 2007 (supervision)
Bass and Ward v Solicitors Regulation Authority  EWHC 2457 (Admin)  5 Costs LO 651: whether the costs on an appeal from the SDT should be determined by CPR 52 or by Baxendale-Walker v Law Society  1 WLR 426
Beller v The Law Society  EWHC 2200 (Admin)
Whether SDT justified in striking a solicitor off the roll who had breached an undertaking given to a client
R (Marshall) v Nursing & Midwifery Council  EWHC 2931: whether the responsibility of a “nurse in charge” required the nurse to read the notes of the lower-grade nurses in respect of all patients within their care to check that there had been no omissions or failures on the part of the lower-grade nurses
DAS v Secretary of State for Education and Skills  796.PT: acted for Secretary of State in List 99 appeal (whether s142 Education Act on grounds that Appellant unsuitable to work with children) in Care Standards Tribunal. Instructed by DTI Inspector re foreign assistance
Vikram has an interesting advisory and litigation practice for both taxpayers and HMRC covering a broad range of direct and indirect tax.
Sinclair v HMRC  EWHC 2820 (Ch): whether Claimant entitled to act as a Representative within CPR 19.6 in respect of carry back claims
R (Golding) v General Commissioners of Income Tax  EWHC 2435 (Admin)  STC 381: whether decision not to issue closure notice tainted by bias against a tax inspector and the chairman of the tribunal
Lower Mill Estate Limited v HMRC  UKUT 463 (TCC)  STC 636: whether companies in common ownership supplied leases of land and building services to construct holiday homes could be treated as a single supply for VAT purposes and whether they resulted in a tax advantage contrary to EU law under the Halifax doctrine
R (Golding) v General Commissioner of Income Tax  EWHC 2435 (Admin)  STC 381: whether tax inspector and/or chairman of General Commissioners had exhibited apparent bias
Re The Regulation of Private Eye Clinics (2010)
Acted for potential investors on instruction of leading City firm on the regulation of private eye clinics after the merger of the Healthcare Commission into the Care Quality Commission; covered CQC notification requirements; and whether any statutory and regulatory provisions are capable of piercing the corporate veil
R (Bottomley) v General Commissioners of Income Tax, Pontefract Division  EWHC 1708 (Admin)  STC 2532
Claim that General Commissioners exhibited apparent bias during a hearing
Lancaster v HMRC  UKFTT 559 (TC)
Dispute with taxi firm over turnover and proper VAT treatment of commission
Christies Care Limited v HMRC (2009)
Dispute regarding direct tax treatment of employment agency, acting for taxpayer.
SRI International v HMRC  UKFTT 221 (TC): challenge to decision to refuse to pay VAT refund, pursuant to Directive 86/150
Lai v HMRC (Norris J, 7 October 2008)
Expenses on refurbishment services that had been rendered to a business more than six months before it became registered for VAT was not capable of constituting input tax in its VAT return
R (Lower Mill) v HMRC  EWHC 2409 (Admin)  BTC 5743: whether a claim for judicial review should be adjourned pending the resolution of an appeal to the VAT tribunal
James v HMRC  UKVAT V20426  STI 287: whether remedial works constituted reconstruction of an existing building
Vikram has a busy practice in Costs and Litigation Funding. He now specialises in Commercial Costs, and is one of Lord Justice Jackson’s assessors appointed to give advice in relation to his review into fixed recoverable costs in 2017.
Griffith v Paragon Personal Finance Ltd (Sheffield County Court, 17 October, 2016): whether a Conditional Fee Agreement is assignable in law
Hyde v Milton Keynes Hospital NHS Foundation Trust  EWHC 72 (QB)  1 Costs LR 1: whether CFA lawful when entered into while legal aid certificate still valid; CA appeal listed for hearing in 2017
Halborg v EMW Law LLP  EWHC 2005 (Ch): whether an LLP acting for itself is a litigant in person within CPR 46.8; CA appeal listed for hearing in 2017
Weatherford Global Products Ltd v Hydropath Holdings Ltd  EWHC 3243 (TCC): whether non party costs order should be made against controller of companies who were parties to litigation
Heron v TNT (UK) Ltd  EWCA Civ 469  1 WLR: whether mere negligence is sufficient to justify a non party costs order against a solicitor
R (Scott) v Hackney LBC  EWCA Civ 217  LLR 775: whether the effect on public funds justified changing the Boxall principles on costs in judicial review
Meretz Investments NV v Britel Corporation NV  EWHC 2635 (Ch)  1 Costs LR 42: the principles underlying the apportionment of costs between different parties instructing the same solicitor
Jones v Caradon Catnic Ltd  EWCA Civ 1821  3 Costs LR 427: enforceability of a CFA which claimed an uplift of 120% where the agreement had a specified maximum of 100%
Vikram has wide experience of the clash between freedom of expression and Article 8 and has appeared in leading cases in the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal, Mental Health Review Tribunal, and the Court of Protection.
Re C  EWCOP 21  COPLR 236: reporting restriction orders in the Court of Protection in serious medical treatment cases could extend beyond the death of the subject of the proceedings
A Healthcare NHS Trust v P  EWCOP 15  COPLR 147: in applications for reporting restriction orders the applicant should identify the parties including the adult in question when notifying the press
Andersons Solicitors v Solicitors Regulation Authority  EWHC 3659 (Admin): whether SRA’s policy of publishing details of complaints far in advance of the hearing was a proportionate interference with Respondents’ Article 8 rights
W v M (by her litigation friend, the Official Solicitor) and a NHS Hospital Trust  1 WLR 287: the leading case on reporting restriction orders in the Court of Protection
AH v West London Mental Health Trust  UKUT 264 (AAC)  MHLR 326;  UKUT 74 (AAC)  MHLR 85: whether a mental health review tribunal should, for the first time, be heard in public
“He was a doctor before, so he knows the health issues very, very well.” “A very smooth operator” who “is able to bring a different perspective to his cases.” Chambers & Partners 2017