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‘Members here are consistently instructed in some of the most complex and significant cases, and are viewed as embodying all-round quality from top to bottom.’Chambers and Partners 2014
Karon Monaghan QC

Contact: Practice Manager:

Karon Monaghan QC practises principally in the fields of equality and discrimination law, human rights and EU law.

Her work spans the fields of employment law, civil actions, judicial review and inquests. She has appeared in numerous cases at appellate level, including in the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court and (on references under Art 267, TFEU) in the CJEU.

Karon’s recent cases include:

  • CD v ST (Case C-167/12) (2014) (EU maternity and non-discrimination rights and surrogacy) CJEU
  • Jessemey v Rowstock Ltd & Anor [2014] EWCA Civ 185 (post-termination victimization)
    Inquest into the Death of Cassandra Hasanovic (2014) (domestic violence homicide and state failures)
  • Unison v Lord Chancellor [2014] EWHC 218 (Admin) (employment tribunal fees, discrimination and the Public Sector Equality Duty)
  • Ladele and A’or v United Kingdom (2013) ECtHR App. nos. 51671/10 and 36516/10 (manifestation of religious belief at work and impact on sexual minorities)
  • Gallop v Newport CC [2013] EWCA Civ 1583 (knowledge of disability)
  • Barts and the London NHS Trust v Verma [2013] UKSC 20 (part-time work and pay protection)
  • Bull and another v Hall and another [2013] UKSC 73 (sexual orientation discrimination and bed and breakfast accommodation)
  • Inquest into the Death of Sabina Akhtar (2014) (domestic violence homicide and state failures)
  • Minister voor Immigratie en Asiel v X, Y, Z (Joined Cases C-199/12; C-200/12 and C-201/12) (2013) CJEU (persecution of gay men and asylum)
  • S.A.S v France (burqa ban in France) (ECtHR)
  • R (Quila) v SoS [2012] 1 AC 621 (immigration rules and forced marriage)
  • HJ(Iran) v SoS [2010] 3WLR 386 (persecution of gay men and asylum)
  • Rodriguez v The Minister for Housing of the Government of Gibraltar and the Housing Allocation Committee [2009] UKPC 52 (Marriage criterion and sexual orientation discrimination in housing provision)

She was awarded Liberty’s Human Rights Lawyer of the Year Award in 2010.

Karon was named Employment Silk of the Year at the 2017 Chambers & Partners Bar Awards.

Advisory Work

Karon also undertakes advisory work for public bodies and NGOs. She regularly provides advice to the Equality and Human Rights Commission.

Karon acted as Special Adviser to the House of Commons Business, Innovation and Skills Committee for their Inquiry on Women in the Workplace (2013-14). She also acted as adviser to the Government’s Women and Equality Unit on the “Discrimination Law Review” (2006) which led to the Equality Act 2010. She was Special Adviser to the Treasury Select Committee for their Inquiry on Women in the City (2009/10). She was appointed by the Commission for the Compact to undertake an independent legal analysis and review of the Compact’s BME Code (2008) and she was a member of the Fawcett Society’s Commission on Women in the Criminal Justice System (2003-9).


Karon is a regular lecturer, writer and speaker on equality and human rights.

Her publications include:

  • Monaghan on Equality Law (2013) Oxford University Press (755pp)
  • Clayton & Tomlinson, The Law of Human Rights (contributor)
  • Ed. Hunter, McGlynn and Rackley, Feminist Judgments: From Theory to Practice (2010) Hart (contributor)
  • K. Monaghan, The Equality Bill: A Sheep in Wolf’s Clothing or Something More? [2009] European Human Rights Law Review 512
  • K. Monaghan, Constitutionalizing Equality: New Horizons [2008] European Human Rights Law Review 20
  • Civil Procedure (2006 – 2014 Sweet and Maxwell) (Discrimination sections)


  • Deputy High Court Judge (Administrative Court)
  • Recorder (Crown Court)
  • Fee-paid Employment Tribunal Judge (2000-2008)
  • Ad hoc Assistant Deputy Coroner for the Inquests into the deaths of Mr and Mrs Stirland (2010), Mr Jimmy Mubenga (2013) and Mr Hywel Hughes (2014)
  • Member of the International Labour Organization’s (ILO) Committee of Experts on the Application of Conventions and Recommendations.

Karon discusses the issue of creating international standards for preventing violence against women in her Matrix International interview.

Karon accepts instructions under the Bar Council Standard Contractual Terms, details of which can be found here.

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