“He is outstanding both on his feet and on paper.”
Chambers & Partners
Vikram is meticulous in his preparation, commercially astute, supremely intelligent and charming with clients and judges alike."
Chambers & Partners 2023
Vikram is a highly accomplished and multi-talented advocate who specialises in Administrative & Public Law, Civil Liberties & Human Rights, Healthcare, Commercial Law, Regulatory & Disciplinary, Tax, Media Law, and Costs & Litigation Funding. He is known for creatively pushing the boundaries of the law, and has appeared in a number of important cases in all of these fields up to the Supreme Court. He is often brought in for high profile cases outside his primary fields such as the divorce of the Ruler of Dubai.
Vikram studied Undergraduate Medicine in Part I and Law in Part II at Cambridge. He took a year out from his medical degree to take the BCL, and then returned to the Clinical Medical course at Oxford. He then taught Administrative law at Cambridge University, and Tort and Criminal law at Oxford University, for several years. He was awarded the Queen Mother Scholarship, the Harmsworth Entrance Exhibition, and an accommodation scholarship by Middle Temple.
Vikram is recommended in the legal directories in Administrative and Public law, Civil Liberties and Human Rights, Regulatory and Disciplinary law, Court of Protection (Welfare), and Costs and Litigation Funding.
Before taking silk, Vikram spent many years on the Attorney General’s A, B and C panels. He has acted in four cases in the Supreme Court, 49 cases in the Court of Appeal, and more than a hundred in the High Court.
His cases are often high profile, concern fundamental questions of principle, and attract national media attention, for instance the Supreme Court cases of Tigere (student loans and the right to education), Aintree v James (definition of "futile" medical treatment), NHS v Y (whether court application needed to withdraw CANH if family agrees); and JB v A Local Authority (whether capacity to engage in sexual relations requires an understanding that the other person must consent throughout). He also acted in the Skripal case (whether blood samples could be taken for the OPCW); the Interchange Fee Litigation (whether parties had settled after expiry of the relevant period); advice during the VW and Mercedes Emissions litigation; Smith v Lancashire (declaration of incompatibility against the Fatal Accidents Act leading to a change in the legislation in causing the right to bereavement damages to be extended to cohabitees of 2 years); Ashya King (whether proton radiotherapy should be performed in Czech Republic); Tafida Raqeeb (whether breach of TFEU article 56 not to permit travel to Italy for medical treatment); and the reinterpretation of the Mitchell principles concerning relief against sanction in Denton v White.
In March 2013, whilst still a Junior, he was named The Times' Lawyer of the Week.
Vikram acts for both Claimants and Defendants in Public Law and Human rights cases in approximately equal measure, and was until recently the Chair of the Constitutional and Administrative Law Bar Association. Vikram sits in the Administrative Court as a Deputy High Court Judge. He was one of only two members of the Bar to be chosen to be a member of Lord Faulks’ Independent Review of Administrative Law.
As well as appearing in most of the important medical treatment cases of the last decade, Vikram was a founder member and Chair of the Court of Protection Bar Association. He sits as a Deputy High Court Judge in the Family Division and often hears medical treatment cases
Vikram has a thriving commercial and arbitration practice ranging from civil fraud, to banking, to international supply contracts.
He also practices in Regulatory & Disciplinary (often providing strategic advice to Regulators), Tax (most recently appearing in the Court of Appeal in a £1 billion direct tax case), Media law (particularly in relation to medical treatment cases) and Costs and Litigation Funding/
Vikram was nominated for The Legal 500 Bar Awards 2022 for Government and Third Sector Silk of the Year.
Areas of expertise
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 a wide range of clients including individuals, companies, local authorities, and central government.
Cases of note:
- R (Gossip) v NHS Surrey Downs CCG  EWHC 3411 (Admin)  PTSR 1239 - whether the claim should be against the CCG's decision or to the subsequent appeal to the Independent Review Panel; and whether exceptional circumstances were required for a CCG to differ from an assessment panel.
- R (Tafida Raqeeb) v Barts NHS Foundation Trust  EWHC 2531 (Admin)  3 All ER 663 - whether breach of TFEU article 56 not to permit travel to Italy for medical treatment
- NHS Trust v Y  UKSC 46;  AC 978 - Whether it was a breach of A2 to fail to seek permission from court before withdrawing CANH in a Prolonged Disorder of Consciousness.
- In re Briggs (Incapacitated Person)  EWCA Civ 1169  Fam 63 - Whether s21A MCA 2005 permitted the determination of withdrawal of CANH from a patient in a Prolonged Disorder of Consciousness.
- Djaba v West London Mental Health Trust  EWCA Civ 436;  1 WLR 1333 - Whether mental health tribunals have jurisdiction to determine issues under A5 and/or A8
- R (Tigere) v Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills  UKSC 57  1 WLR 3820 - whether it was a breach of Article 14 read with Article 2 of the First Protocol to deny student loans to those who did not possess Indefinite Leave to Remain
Commercial Litigation and Arbitration
Vikram has practised in Commercial law for over 20 years, and has spent much of his time since taking silk in the Chancery Division. His practice ranges from commercial litigation and arbitration to civil fraud, banking and finance, and company law and insolvency. He is known for his robust cross-examination style and ability to separate out the relevant legal principles quickly.
- Commercial Arbitration (2022) - dissolution of GP Practice
- NHS v A Turkish Company (2020) - dispute over supply of 400,000 surgical gowns to the NHS
- SPI North v Swiss Post International (UK) Ltd and Asendia UK Ltd - long-running £17m claim against two national postal operators for breach of exclusive distribution contract;  EWCA Civ 7  1 WLR 2865 (whether non-admission in Defence requires reasonable enquiry into facts);  EWHC 2004 (Ch) (amendment to statements of case and summary judgment);  EWHC 3268 (Ch) (application for summary judgment)
- Chief Constable A v Chief Constable B (2019) - claim for an urgent injunction to secure continued collaboration by a second police force pursuant to the contract between them
- An NHS Foundation Trust v A Company (2018) - dispute as to whether Payment by Results applied to two subcontracts
- Application in Private  EWHC 3606 (Comm) - permission to accept Part 36 offer during trial of the Interchange Fee litigation
- EMW Law LLP v Halborg  EWHC 1014 (Ch);  3 Costs LO 281 - Whether solicitor obliged to disclose to agent without prejudice negotiations with the other side, or whether a new exception to without privilege principle should be recognised
- Jones v NHS England (2017) - application for a mandatory injunction compelling performance of GMS contract
- 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.
- Blankley v Central Manchester & Manchester Children's University Hospitals NHS Trust  EWCA Civ 18;  1 WLR 4307 - Whether supervening mental incapacity frustrates a solicitor’s contract of retainer
- Commercial Arbitration (2015)
- 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.
Civil Liberties and Human Rights
Vikram has a very successful commercial litigation practice covering commercial dispute resolution, banking, fraud, energy, insurance/reinsurance, procurement, construction, and media and entertainment.
Vikram is a member of COMBAR, and LCLCBA.
- Domestic Arbitration (2019 – 20) (Arbitrator).
- SPI North v Swiss Post & Asendia  EWHC 2004 (Ch): whether Claimant entitled to amend its claim to plead implied terms of non-competition and good faith.
- Re a Police Force (2019): whether one of the parties to a demerger of certain facilities including IT facilities could claim a mandatory injunction after expiry of the notice period for the continued provision of IT facilities.
- SPI North v Swiss Post & Asendia  EWCA Civ 7  1 WLR 2865: Multimillion pound claim for damages for breach of exclusive distribution contract against two national postal services; whether CPR r. 16.5(1)(b) obliged a defendant to make reasonable enquiries of third parties before pleading that it was unable to admit or deny an allegation.
- Domestic Arbitration (2018) (Arbitrator).
- Application in Private  EWHC 3606 (Comm)  6 Costs LR 1203: whether a group of Defendants in the Interchange Litigation were entitled to withdraw a Part 36 offer while a trial was in progress.
- Jones v NHS Commissioning Board  EWHC 3557 (QB): Whether claimant GPs entitled to interim injunction restraining termination of GMS contract.
- EMW Law LLP v Halborg  EWHC 1014 (Ch);  3 Costs LO 281: Whether solicitor obliged to disclose to agent without prejudice negotiations with the other side.
- International Arbitration (2016) (Counsel).
- Blankley v Central Manchester & 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.
Regulatory and Disciplinary
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 has also acted in a number of appeals to the High Court from disciplinary bodies.
Vikram was for many years a member of the Executive Committee of ARDL, and head of the Seminar Committee.
Legal Clerk to the independent Appeals Body to Phoneypayplus, the premium rate regulator.
- JK v MK and E-Negotiation Ltd  EWFC 2  1 FLR 1234: whether assistance with preparing a divorce petition and financial remedy order breached Legal Services Act Sch 2 para 4 or para 5.
- Advice (2020); whether a UK firm was entitled to withdraw from domestic litigation based on the relationship between a linked firm and a member of the Royal family in that country.
- A Regulator (2019): advised on proper procedure where a complaint is made against a member of a disciplinary committee.
- Alves v General Dental Council (2018); whether GDC had power to impose sanctions that result in expenditure to the registrant.
- VW Emissions litigation (2017): advice to a firm on its regulatory position.
- R (Pym) v General Dental Council (2017): whether the evidence justified the GDC decision to hold a substantive disciplinary hearing.
- A Regulator (2016): whether litigation privilege applies to certain documents, and whether the iniquity exception was engaged.
- A Doctor (2014 – 6): whether defence union entitled to terminate membership without giving reasons.
- R (Andersons Solicitors) v SRA  EWHC 3659 (Admin): whether SRA entitled to publish allegations significantly in advance of public disciplinary hearing.
- Bass & Ward v Solicitors Regulation Authority  EWHC 2012 (Admin): An appeal against a finding that solicitors had breached Rule 5 of the Code of Conduct 2007 (supervision).
- Bass & 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.
Vikram has an interesting advisory and litigation practice for both taxpayers and HMRC covering a broad range of direct and indirect tax.
- Knibbs v Revenue & Customs Commissioners; Astley v Revenue & Customs Commissioners  EWCA Civ 1719  1 WLR 731: whether the prescriptive scheme for calculation of tax liability in the Income Tax Act 2007 Part 2 Chapter 3 had to be construed as excluding from its ambit the operation of the Taxes Management Act 1970 Schedule 1B para 2(6) where a carry-back claim for trade loss relief had been made by the taxpayer.
- 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.
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) & 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.
Costs and Litigation Funding
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.
- Akers v Kirkland  EWHC 2176 (QB)  Costs LR 1797: whether judge correct to recuse himself when assessing the fee of a barrister who by then had become a district judge in a nearby court.
- Mattia Corrado Ubbi and Gabriele Corrado Ubbi v Susan Elizabeth Ubbi  EWHC 2333 (Ch): whether an appeal involving a bundle that contained details of Part 16 and without prejudice save as to costs offers (and which potentially breached CPR 52.22) should be held in two stages.
- Maugham v Uber London Ltd  EWHC 391 (Ch)  STC 496: whether a PCO can be obtained in private law proceedings.
- Halborg v EMW Law LLP  EWCA Civ 793;  1 WLR 52: Whether an LLP which was a solicitors firm acting for itself in litigation was properly regarded as a litigant in person.
- EMW Law LLP v Halborg  EWHC 1014 (Ch);  3 Costs LO 281: Whether solicitor obliged to disclose to agent without prejudice negotiations with the other side.
- Hyde v Milton Keynes Hospital NHS Foundation Trust  EWCA Civ 399;  1 WLR 597: Whether CFA lawful when entered into while legal aid certificate still valid; CA appeal listed for hearing in 2017.
- Spencer v Jones SCCO 6 January 2017: Whether the claimant, who was a solicitor, had proved loss in his costs claim equal to his normal hourly rate for the hours spent.
- Griffith v Paragon Personal Finance Ltd (Sheffield County Court, 17 October, 2016): Whether a Conditional Fee Agreement is assignable in law.
- 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.
- “Exceptionally on the ball and quick to provide strategic and commercial advice.” Chambers & Partners
- “A charming and eloquent advocate with an almost unique background of medicine and law.” Legal 500
- “A very forceful and very well-liked advocate.” Chambers & Partners
- “[O]f note for his niche expertise in medical human rights.” – Civil Liberties and Human Rights, Legal 500 2019
- “Is very responsive and has a particular expertise in complex medical treatment cases.” – Court of Protection and
- Community Care, Legal 500 2019
- “One of the best-established practitioners in the area and a man with wide-ranging knowledge.” – Costs, Chambers
- & Partners 2019
- “A very forceful and very well-liked advocate.” – Costs, Chambers & Partners 2019
- “Vikram is a leading silk for Court of Protection welfare cases. He has a strong intellect, attention to detail and a real
- depth of knowledge.” – Court of Protection: Health & Welfare, Chambers & Partners (2019)
- “He is outstanding both on his feet and on paper.” – Court of Protection: Health & Welfare, Chambers & Partners
- “He is incisive, well balanced and really goes the extra mile for his clients.” – Court of Protection: Health & Welfare,
- Chambers & Partners (2019)
- “Exceptionally on the ball and quick to provide strategic and commercial advice.” – Administrative & Public Law,
- Chambers & Partners (2019)
- “A guru on anything to do with the medical treatment field. He’s very good at explaining things in a very succinct way because he has so much experience and knowledge as a former doctor.” – Administrative & Public Law Chambers & Partners (2019)
- “He gives incredibly pragmatic and risk-based advice. He was a qualified medical professional, which gives him great insight into the work of a medical regulator. His written advice is very clear and we can share it with clients without ‘translation’. He is approachable and always gets back to us.” – Professional Discipline, Chambers & Partners (2019)
- “Meticulous in his preparation and will always go the extra mile for the client.” – Civil Liberties and Human Rights, Legal 500 (2018)
- “Has great knowledge of costs law and its practical application.” “Vikram is a good advocate, who is energetic and hard-working.” – Costs Litigation, Chambers & Partners (2018)
- “Has an effective and persuasive advocacy style.” – Costs, Legal 500 (2018)
- “He’s very methodical, calm and controlled.” “Vikram is at the top of his game, he’ll be brought in for any challenging, high-level case.” – Court of Protection: Health & Welfare, Chambers & Partners (2018)
- “A persuasive advocate.” – Court of Protection and Community Care, Legal 500 (2018)
- “Very personable, easy to communicate with and very quick to explain. He’s very calm and his advocacy skills are excellent.” – Administrative & Public Law, Chambers & Partners (2018)
- “Extremely knowledgeable on healthcare judicial review – he always makes things easy for us.” Administrative & Public Law, Chambers & Partners (2018)
- “The man you want to instruct in difficult litigation – determined and robust, while remaining a calm personality.” – Professional Discipline and Regulatory Law, Legal 500 (2018)
- “Very personable and very approachable.” – Professional Discipline, Chambers & Partners (2018)