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“Beth is the definition of rising star at the Bar. She is razor-sharp, her written work is excellent and combined with her clarity of advocacy, she is operating at a level far in excess of her call. She’s incredibly popular with clients and her no-nonsense style is very refreshing” Legal 500 2022

Beth Grossman practices across media, commercial and employment law. She has also advised internationally. She is a rising star in Legal 500 for media and employment law and is ranked as up and coming in Chambers and Partners for media law. 

Beth has acted as sole counsel in the High Court for the successful party in a number of high-profile and reported judgments, including:

  • Langley v GMB [2021] IRLR 309, for the successful trade union at trial in a claim in professional negligence arising out of an employment dispute and setting legal precedent about the scope of a trade union’s duty of care to a member.

  • Ahmed v Director General of the Security Services [2020] EWHC 3458, for the media in a successful application for a claim about the UK security services’ alleged complicity in torture in Pakistan to be heard in public.

  • Lupu, Spearmint Rhino and others v Not Buying It [2020] EMLR 6, for the successful defendants resisting an application for anonymity and an expedited trial.

Her experience spans defamation, commercial and insolvency matters involving complex issues of law through to fact-heavy employment and professional conduct trials involving vulnerable witnesses and cross-examination on highly sensitive allegations of physical assault and historic sex abuse.

Beth has a wide client base, including high- profile private individuals, professional services firms, film production companies, newspapers and broadcasters, NGOs and trades unions. She is  a member of the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s Preferred Panel of Counsel.  

What the directories say:

“Beth is the definition of rising star at the Bar. She is razor-sharp, her written work is excellent and combined with her clarity of advocacy, she is operating at a level far in excess of her call. She’s incredibly popular with clients and her no-nonsense style is very refreshing” Legal 500 2022 (Media)

“Beth is extremely clever and thorough, and her written work is beautifully put together” Legal 500 2022 (Employment).

“Beth Grossman is a talented barrister gaining strong recognition in the defamation and privacy field. She acts for both claimants and defendants in litigation, as well as pre-publication advice and international matters.” "She is patient, always precise and clear in her advice, and able to explain the issues in lay terms." "She researches everything very thoroughly, has a good understanding of the law and fights tooth and nail for clients." Chambers and Partners 2022

“Absolutely excellent, very conscientious, and focused on a strategic approach”, Legal 500 2021.

What clients say:

“The presentation of skeleton argument and advocacy of @BKGrossman at trial was a thing to behold. Just sparkling in her professional ability”, lay client.

Media and Information Law

Beth’s expertise spans editorial media law (defamation, privacy, breach of confidence, copyright, harassment, reporting restrictions) as well as commercial media law (contractual and regulatory disputes, film finance, licensing) as well as international work. She acts for both claimants and defendants and also provides pre-publication legal advice to the Telegraph, the Sun and Jewish News.

In 2019, she delivered training on freedom of expression litigation for the International Senior Lawyers’ Partnership and the Media Institute of Southern Africa in Zimbabwe. She has been appointed by the Council of Europe to its panel of experts for Kosovo, and has delivered training to members of the judiciary of the Western Balkans in Pristina, Kosovo.

In June 2021, she wrote a guide for journalists to combat online harassment and abuse, published by the Media Lawyers’ Association and commissioned by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Defamation

  • Miller and Power v Turner [2021] EWHC 2135, for the Claimants in a trial of preliminary issue on meaning.

  • XXXX known as Jean Hatchet v Shanu Varma [2021] EWHC 1709 (QB), for the successful Claimant in a libel case arising from allegations of fraud made on Twitter, obtaining £45,000 in damages at trial and recovery of all costs incurred.

  • Davies v Carter [2020] EWHC 2674, for the Claimant in ongoing  libel and harassment proceedings, including a trial of preliminary issues, obtaining an injunction until trial and an order for an expedited trial.

  • Rochester v Ingham House: for the Defendant in proceedings in libel and malicious falsehood involving a former staff member and complaints to regulatory body. Beth successfully obtained relief from sanctions, resisted strike out (and struck out part of the Claimant’s case) and resisted the Claimant’s contended meanings in three reported judgments ([2018] EWHC 3599; [2019] EWHC 464 (QB); [2019] EWHC 847 (QB).

Privacy, Confidence and Data Protection

  • Defending a claim brought in confidence, privacy and data protection against the managing agents of a leasehold development (ongoing).

  • Lupu, Spearmint Rhino Companies and others v Rakoff, Not Buying It and others: [2020] EMLR 6. Beth acted (unled) for the first and second defendants in a reported case for misuse of private information and breach of the GDPR in which she resisted applications for an injunction, anonymised proceedings and an expedited trial successfully. The matter settled in the Defendants’ favour in July 2020.

  • H v Various: preventing the publication of commercially sensitive information and allegations of corruption during a procurement process on behalf of a group of companies worth £44m annually (March 2020).

  • L v B, successful “court door” negotiations for the defendant in respect of committal proceedings arising out of a claim for harassment and misuse of private information.

  • A and B v C, for the successful claimants in a “revenge porn” claim in misuse of private information and defamation also brought against A’s former employer, negotiating a settlement agreement of £40,000, delivery up and undertakings.

  • B v A Broadcaster, for the claimants (a convicted criminal and his wife), successfully obtaining undertakings prior to the broadcast of a documentary.

Open justice, reporting restrictions and contempt of court

  • Ahmed v Director General of the Security Services [2020] EWHC 3458, for the media in a successful application for a claim about the UK security services’ alleged complicity in torture in Pakistan to be heard in public.

  • Maya Forstater v CGD UKEAT/0105/20/JOJ [2021] I.R.L.R. 706: for media organisations and freelance journalists in a successful application for the Employment Appeal Tribunal to lift a cap on numbers permitted to attend an appeal in a case which has attracted widespread publicity and is the subject of ongoing political debate.

  • In the Matter of Fishmonger’s Hall Inquests: for The Times in submissions to the Coroner.

  • For The Times in a successful application for the court to lift restrictions imposed under s12 Administration of Justice Act 1960 to permit the reporting of family court proceedings.

Commercial media litigation

  • C v W: defending a breach of contract claim arising out of a film finance agreement (ongoing).

  • Microsoft v K: defending a respondent in a breach of  copyright claim involving a freezing injunction.

  • In the matter of a production company, advice on image rights, data protection, last matching rights and other contractual matters relating to a popular prime-time comedian and an international production company.

  • SBM v TN, contractual dispute involving issues of reputational damage and confidential information between an international sports player and his former agent (settled).

  • A v N, a multi-million pound claim arising out of the Commercial Agents regulations concerning an international broadcasting company (led by William McCormick QC) (settled).

  • Advice and representation in film finance litigation, including insolvency litigation, arising out of the failure to distribute funds pursuant to a distribution agreement

International

  • Advice on media regulation reform in Zimbabwe.

  • Advice on availability of public interest/Reynolds defences relating to a documentary in Jamaica.

  • Reports into proposed hate speech legislation in Myanmar.

  • Advice on freedom of expression in the context of obscenity in Uganda.

 

Commercial Law

Beth’s commercial practice encompasses contractual disputes, insolvency, disputes between directors, commercial agency and professional negligence. She also has experience of commercial disputes which engage criminal or regulatory law (for example Companies House prosecutions and Charity Commission investigations). She has particular expertise in disputes which have a media or employment dimension to them. Her recent experience includes:

Contractual disputes

  • C v W: defending a breach of contract claim arising out of a film finance agreement (ongoing).

  • In the matter of a production company: advice as to termination provisions in a contract for the television adaptation of a popular novel.

  • Successfully resisting a claim arising out of restrictive covenants brought by an architect’s firm against a former employee.

Insolvency disputes

  • In the matter of 106 of 2016: successfully obtaining costs orders against a trustee in bankruptcy.

  • Re A Company 2645 of 2018, Re A Company 250 of 2019, and Re A Company 3411 of 2019: for the successful applicants in injunctions to restrain presentation or publicity of winding-up petitions, and in getting those petitions dismissed as abuse of process.

  • Palmer v Caliji Motors: for the successful creditor in a contested insolvency matter.

  • Claims in misfeasance and shareholder disputes.

Professional negligence

  • Langley v GMB [2020] EWHC 3619, for the successful defendant, a trade union, in a claim in professional negligence arising out of an employment dispute involving allegations of whistleblowing by  a trade union representative, in a trial which reviewed the law on a union’s liability and set legal precedent.

Commercial agency

  • F v PC: for the defendant in a commercial agency claim (settled).

  • A v N: a multi-million pound dispute arising in the broadcast industry (led by William McCormick QC) (settled).

Other commercial claims

  • H v S: for the defendant in a claim in breach of fiduciary duty brought in respect of a luxury sports car

  • Microsoft v K: defending a respondent in a breach of  copyright claim involving a freezing injunction.

  • Companies House v SM: For the successful defendant in the withdrawal of a prosecution for the failure to file accounts on the basis of Article 6 ECHR and an all reasonable steps defence.

  • In the matter of a Charity and its Directors v The Charity Commission: for the directors of a charitable foundation in successfully setting aside an Order and closing an inquiry by the regulator.

Employment Law

Beth acts for both claimants and respondents in the Employment Tribunal and the Employment Appeal Tribunal on complex multi-day hearings. She also undertakes grievance and disciplinary investigations. Her work in this area is complemented by her rapidly growing practice in professional discipline and regulation. Current and recent instructions include:

  • Langley v GMB [2020] EWHC 3619, for the successful defendant, a trade union, in a claim in professional negligence arising out of an employment dispute involving allegations of whistleblowing by  a trade union representative, in a trial which reviewed the law on a union’s liability and set legal precedent.

  • Fox v Jaguar Land Rover (October 2020): for the successful claimant in a six day trial in disability discrimination.

  • Teaching Regulation Agency v H: for the defendant, a teacher accused of multiple physical assaults. The Panel found that the assaults had not taken place.

  • Teaching Regulation Agency v M: for the defendant, a teacher facing historic allegations of sex abuse (ongoing).

  • N v C, for the claimant in a disability discrimination claim, successfully settling proceedings in the course of trial.

  • M v Bradford NHS Trust, for the claimant in an unfair dismissal, whistleblowing and racial discrimination case, succeeding in the unfair dismissal claim.

  • R v An Accountacy Firm, interim relief application on grounds of whistleblowing.

  • S v I: for the respondent, the service company of a solicitors’ firm, for a claim in sex and race discrimination harassment and victimisation, succeeding in the dismissal of six out of seven claims.

  • A v A Bank: for the claimant, a former director of a major financial services institution in a discrimination and whistleblowing detriments claim (settled on eve of trial for £1m).

  • Sood v British Airways: for the successful claimant in a four-day trial for unfair dismissal relating to sick leave of over 100 days a year for 19 years with no identified underlying cause.

  • Newman v Jabac, for the respondent, a private bank, obtaining a stay on the eve of a seven day trial in a claim for disability discrimination and whistleblowing pending High Court determination of a related claim in breach of confidence.

  • T and Ors v CS: for the successful claimants in a redundancy/TUPE claim brought by a large number of non-English speaking security staff.

  • K v R:  Employment Appeal Tribunal, for the claimant, a disabled person, in a successful appeal.

  • SJ v T: for the Claimant in a claim involving harassment and unlawful surveillance by her former employer.