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Shaheen Rahman QC

Call:  1996 
QC: 2017


Shaheen Rahman QC is a barrister in Administrative and Public Law, Civil Liberties, Clinical Negligence and Professional Disciplinary law.  

She is instructed by Claimants and Defendants in high value, complex and sensitive cases including obstetric injuries, missed cancer cases and nervous shock claims.  

She acts for doctors and dentists in conduct, health and performance cases at the GMC and GDC.  She appears in healthcare judicial reviews, and has in particular acted for the Claimant in a number of successful and innovative prison healthcare challenges.  

She has recently been instructed for healthcare providers in the context of judicial review challenges of the sufficiency of public consultation exercises and also in relation to the proposed closure of hospital services. She has extensive experience as a Special Advocate and has appeared in many of the leading cases. She has acted for Health Trusts and families at sensitive and complex inquests, particular arising from death of children and young adults.


Shaheen has been ranked for many years as a leader in Administrative & Public Law, Civil Liberties, Clinical Negligence and Professional Discipline.  She was appointed QC in 2017.  Recent quotes from the directories include:

Administrative & Public Law

"Dogged and tenacious." "Very thorough and clear about the client's responsibilities and liabilities. Informative and clear advice." (Chambers and Partners 2017)

“Handles a range of public law matters arising from national security and healthcare judicial reviews. She often acts in closed material proceedings and is commended for the results she obtains as a special advocate. “She is a brave and tenacious advocate who always reads the papers." "She is bold, aggressive and intellectual - she gets great results."”  (Chambers and Partners 2016)

“Judicial reviews are clearly her area of knowledge and expertise” (Legal 500 2016)

“She’s very good, very effective, and has a forthright approach” (Chambers and Partners 2015)

"She has impressive attention to detail, is able to digest material in a comprehensive way, and has good tactical awareness." (Chambers and Partners 2014)

“A tenacious advocate” (Legal 500 2014)

"has got a very good feel for what the client wants, and is very good at determining the best way forward." Those that use her find her to be "an extremely good and very robust advocate." (Chambers and Partners 2013)

“renowned for her combined public law and clinical negligence practice. Sources speak highly of this "user-friendly, bright and collaborative" lawyer, whilst clients are nothing but impressed with her "tenacious and passionate advocacy."  (Chambers and Partners 2012)

“comes highly recommended for complex, politically sensitive matters.  “She does a robust and detailed job and is recognised for getting the bit between her teeth without being over-zealous,” report solicitors.  Noted for her forensic skills, she is a client favourite as she is “very personable and approachable”. (Chambers and Partners 2009)

Civil Liberties and Human Rights

"She was really impressive on her feet." (Chambers and Partners 2017)

"A strong human rights advocate with specific specialist knowledge of prisoners' rights, specifically in relation to their right to religious freedom and healthcare. She is often instructed as a Special Advocate in highly complex and confidential cases. “She is very nice and bright." "Very good. She mainly acts as a special advocate which she's excellent at."”  (Chambers and Partners 2016)

“Clear and concise in her advice, and able to easily identify strengths and weaknesses in a case” (Legal 500 2016)

“She is incredibly efficient and a fighter – when the chips are down she really sticks up for her client.”  (Chambers and Partners 2015)

"She provides helpful advice and has an impressive ability to deal quickly with the complex issues involved in discrimination cases." "She is very good and highly tenacious." (Chambers and Partners 2014)

“Incredibly hardworking and a real asset in any case” (Legal 500 2014)

“acts as a Special Advocate in terrorism-related cases, and also handles a number of matters relating to discrimination and prisoners' rights. Observers remark that "she is approachable, utterly reliable, and always takes the big view." (Chambers and Partners 2013)

 “Shaheen Rahman is singled out for her expertise in prisoner healthcare cases. Recent matters for her include a case alleging breaches under the Human Rights and Disability Discrimination Act alleging failure to provide for a deaf prisoner. She also appeared as a special advocate in a control order case”. (Chambers and Partners 2012)

 “gets right to the core of the issue, doing a precise and thorough job without being overly zealous.  Prison law and health care are particular areas of specialization for her, and she recently acted for a severely disabled prisoner in both a judicial review and a linked damages claim regarding inhuman prison conditions.” (Chambers and Partners 2009)

Clinical Negligence

"She's bold and tenacious and she stands her ground." (Chambers and Partners 2017)

“Shaheen is very good with clients. She is a tenacious advocate at court and gets results."  (Chambers and Partners 2016)

“Thorough and feisty” (Legal 500 2016)

“She was very good on her feet and fearless as an advocate – she really persevered in what was quite a difficult circumstance.  She has a very nice way with clients but she’s pretty no-nonsense which is a useful trait to have.”  (Chambers and Partners 2015)

“She commands respect in court and goes the extra mile for clients.” (Legal 500 2015)

"She's really sensitive with clients, but sometimes a firm hand is also needed and she can employ that when required." (Chambers and Partners 2014)

“Extremely good with clients and expert professionals alike.”  (Legal 500 2014)

“highly experienced on both the claimant and defence side. Her claimant work has developed to include gynaecological and oncological cases as well as those involving vulnerable parties.” (Chambers and Partners 2013)

“Shaheen Rahman has a practice which encompasses high-quality defence and claimant instructions. She is able to quickly master a lot of detail”. “Always strikes the right balance.”  “Forceful when necessary but always sensitive to the nature of the case”. (Chambers and Partners 2012)

Professional Discipline

“She has the ability to command a room and nearly always manages to pull a result out of the bag, even in cases that initially appear to be unwinnable.” "She has a wonderfully precise approach to regulatory matters, and is extremely well prepared, tenacious and thorough." (Chambers and Partners 2017)

“Highly thought-of healthcare specialist, who acts on behalf of a full range of medical practitioners. She has great experience in performance, misconduct and employment matters relating to healthcare professionals. “She develops a good rapport with clients in the GDC. She manages clients extremely well, steering them to the key issues in cases and making sure they don't go off at a tangent." "She listens carefully to clients' views before clearly setting out the best evidential approach to take."  (Chambers and Partners 2016)

“Her results speak for themselves” (Legal 500 2016)

‘A true professional.’  (Legal 500 2015)

“She is articulate, makes her points precisely and clearly and covers all the ground,” (Chambers and Partners 2015)

"She has a very punchy style and is sympathetic to clients' positions." (Chambers and Partners 2014)

“Shaheen Rahman is noted for her holistic approach to cases. Her thorough preparation, intelligence and "gentle professional style" are of great value when defending clients in sensitive professional discipline cases.” (Chambers and Partners 2013)

“Shaheen Rahman “always strikes the right balance." Those instructing her like that she is "forceful when necessary but always sensitive to the nature of the case." (Chambers and Partners 2012)

“Extremely thorough in all she does” (Chambers & Partners 2011)


Attorney General's Panel of Special Advocates since 2005

Significant cases include the following

Significant cases include the following:

Inquest touching the death of Charlotte Foster (August 2016), for the family for family of young woman who died of complications of oral contraceptive pill

R (MR) v Secretary of State for the Home Department and R (AI) v Secretary of State for the Home Department, as Special Advocate, concerning removal Claimant’s passports under the Royal Prerogative [2016] EWHC 1622 (Admin); [2016] ACD 117 : Times, October 10, 2016

Bushell v Manchester Mental Health and Social Care Trust (June 2016) for the Trust in judicial review challenge to decision to withdraw services after public consultation exercise.
GG v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2016] EWHC 1193 (Admin), as Special Advocate in Control Order case.

R (on the application of Black) v Secretary of State for Justice [2015] 1 WLR 3963 [2015] 4 ALL ER 790; [2016] 3 WLR 28 : [2016] 3 All ER 30 : (2016) 150 BMLR 145 : Times, May 6, 2016 For Claimant seeking to enforce the ban on smoking in public places in prisons, permission to appeal to Supreme Court granted.

Dr Miosga v GMC (2015) Related proceedings: [2014] Med L.R. 27 For doctor facing dishonesty allegations.
M2 v Secretary of State for the Home Department (2015) SC/124/2014, as Special Advocate in deportation case.

R (on the application of Hussain) v Secretary of State for Justice (2014) [2013] EWHC 4706, for Muslim prisoner challenging decision to refuse to provide methadone outside daylight hours during Ramadan.

R (on the application of Serdar Mohammed) v Secretary of State for Defence (2012) [2013] 2 all ER 897 : [2013] ACD 24 : [2014] 1 WLR 1071 as Special Advocate in case seeking to prevent transfer of UK detainees to Afghan authorities in view of risk of torture.

CF v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2014] 3 ALL ER 760 : [2014] 1 WLR 4240 [2014] 1 WLR 4240 : Times, May 9, 2014 as Special Advocate in Control order and TPIM case.

B2 v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2013] EWCA Civ 616 as Special Advocate in deportation case.

AT v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] EWCA Civ 42 as Special Advocate in Control Order case.

AM v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2011] EWCA Civ 710 as Special Advocate in Control Order case.

R (on the application of Bhutta) v HM Treasury [2011] EWHC 1789 (Admin) [2011] ACD 106 as Special Advocate in Asset Freeze case.

Secretary of State for the Home Department v AL Saadi [2009] EWHC3390  as Special Advocate in Control Order case.

Secretary of State for the Home Department v AS [2010] ACD 30 as Special Advocate in Control Order case.
R (on the application of Council for the Regulation of Healthcare Professionals) v (1) General Medical Council (2) Vaneet Khanna  [2010] Med LR 157 For doctor successfully defending CHRP appeal on grounds of leniency of sentence.

R (on the application of Nathan Brooks) v (1) Secretary of State for Justice (2) Isle of Wight Primary Care Trust[2010] 1 Prison LR 266 For Claimant in prisoner healthcare judicial review.

M v South West London & St George's Mental Health NHS Trust [2008] EWCA Civ 1112 [2008] MHLR 306 For Trust successfully responding to appeal from MHRT determination.

G v Central & North West London Mental Health NHS Trust [2008] MHLR 24 For Defendant Trust successfully defending clinical negligence claim at trial.

Yanah v General Medical Council [2007] LS Law Medical 143 For doctor in successful appeal from GMC suspension.

R (on the application of Ullah) v Special Adjudicator : Thi lien do v Secretary of State for the Home Department[2004] UKHL 2:  [2004] 2 AC 323 : [2004] 3 WLR 23 : [2004] 3 ALL ER 785 : [2004] HRLR 33 : [2004] UKHRR 995 : [2004] IMM AR 419 : [2004] INLR 381 : (2004) 101(28) LSG 33 : (2004) 154 NLJ 985 : (2004) 148 SJLB 762 : Times, June 18, 2004 : Independent, JUNE 22, 2004 For Intervener, Justice, in case concerning extraterritorial effect of Convention rights.

Other information

VAT Registration No:  702 0107 11


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Philip Havers QC and Shaheen Rahman QC appear in Supreme Court prisoner smoking ban appeal
Shaheen Rahman QC and Matthew Hill speak at the annual Justice Human Rights Law Conference
1 Crown Office Row holds annual Public Law Seminar on the theme of Life, Liberty and Security
Life, Liberty and Security - 1COR Public Law Seminar - Sept 11th 2017 5pm - 8pm