Old Square Tax Chambers ranked in Chambers and Partners for the UK Bar 2022

Old Square Tax Chambers ranked in Chambers and Partners for the UK Bar 2022

Old Square Tax Chambers is honoured to be recognised in the Chambers and Partners for the UK Bar 2022 Directory. James Kessler QC, Robert Venables QC, Rory Mullan QC, Philip Simpson QC, Etienne Wong, Sarah Squires, Harriet Brown, Mary Ashley, and Ross Birkbeck received individual recognition.

Old Square Tax Chambers has been regarded as “one of the major tax chambers.” The set assists both domestic and international clients with domicile and residency issues, inheritance tax planning and trusts planning.

“this is a really good tax chambers. It provides an excellent service to clients.”


James Kessler QC is a well known and highly regarded silk with a depth of experience in offshore disputes and the taxation of foreign domiciliaries. He is an exceptional choice of counsel for any cross-border or conflict of laws matter. Counsel recently advised on the Embiricos v HMRC, a case concerning domicile issues.

“Has extraordinary technical ability and is a go-to barrister for offshore matters.”

“He is thoughtful, bright and very measured in his approach.”


Robert Venables QC is a highly experienced tax barrister with a strong advisory practice and equally extensive litigation experience before English courts, foreign courts and the Privy Council. His particular expertise includes offshore tax planning, residence and domicile issues and employee remuneration. He is also adept at handling cases concerning tax-efficient profit extraction.

Robert is a former chair of the Revenue Bar Association and the author of numerous books on taxation. Robert has represented clients at the highest levels of court.

Robert recently acted in R (oao M Sport) v HMRC, a judicial review application to quash a Follower Notice and an Accelerated Payment Notice.

“Robert’s knowledge of tax law is simply awesome and he is very robust when litigating.”

“He thinks differently and interestingly.”


Rory Mullan QC is an expert in corporate tax who is valued for his impressive advisory and litigation practice. He often represents taxpayers in wide a range of matters such as corporation tax, employment taxes and EU law. He is also handles UK and offshore tax matters for private clients, including planning and disputes. He is known among clients for his expertise in UK-EU tax issues.

“Hard-working, thorough and intelligent.”

“He is very personable, knowledgeable and someone who comes across very well.”

“He has deep knowledge and blends it with a very personable and approachable manner.”

“Rory fiercely fights for his clients.”


Philip Simpson QC a tax barrister with a strong reputation for his work at both the English and Scottish Bars. His practice is split 50:50 on the litigation and advisory fronts, with the vast majority of his litigation work being VAT-related. He is instructed by a number of prominent law firms and regularly appears in leading cases at the forefront of developments in VAT law.

Philip recently acted for the client in the matter of Fakir Halal v HMRC, a case regarding the customs classification of products imported from Australia.

“He is helpful, commercial and technically very strong.”

“Very good with clients.”


Etienne Wong: a barrister who impresses with his VAT knowledge including on matters such as the exemption for special investment funds. He handles a wide range of indirect tax matters, often on behalf of financial services providers.

Etienne recently represented Westland Horticulture seeking permission from the Court of Appeal for the client to bring judicial review proceedings against HMRC for frustrating legitimate expectations created by representations made by them in guidance on the VAT treatment of grass seeds.

“He is very good, friendly and knowledgeable.”

“A strong advocate.”


Sarah Squires was originally a tax partner for Clifford Chance before successfully transitioning to the Bar. She provides advice on a wide range of business-related tax issues, and is particularly adept at offering counsel on tax issues in the corporate real estate sector. In her career at the Bar to date, her work has been overwhelmingly advisory in nature. She has recently advised the British Property Federation on real estate-related tax policy.

“Knows the details, understands the policy background and is able to apply it to real-life transactions.”

“She has a way of explaining complex matters in a simplistic format which is great for clients.”


Harriet Brown has a growing reputation for her work on a vast amount of private client tax matters, Harriet has been noted for her ability to understand technical, complex and high-value cases. She is sought out for both domestic and offshore expertise.

“Incredibly helpful and can look at things from an offshore perspective.”

“Extremely thorough, she is a good communicator who is client-friendly.”


Mary Ashley has a wide tax tax practice, including litigation and advisory work. She has particular expertise in inheritance tax and domicile issues.

“Very diligent and thorough.”

“She is really pragmatic and easy to deal with.”


Ross Birkbeck is well versed in all areas of tax, having a particular expertise in private client matters. Having recently on the Embiricos v HMRC, a case concerning domicile issues.

“He is really technical, really straightforward to deal with and very good at handling complex matters.”


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