Margherita returned to practice in September 2020 following a year spent working as Judicial Assistant to Lord Kerr of Tonaghmore at the UK Supreme Court. During her time with Lord Kerr she worked on cases of high political sensitivity and legal and constitutional complexity, including the Miller No. 2 Prorogation case, Elgizouli and WM Morrison Supermarkets. Her work for Lord Kerr included researching complex legal issues from first principles, forming a view on cases and exposing it persuasively and providing written opinions addressing disputed issues arising from submissions and from the Justices’ deliberations.
Prior to her year at the Supreme Court, during pupillage, Margherita developed a primary interest in Equality and Discrimination Law, both in the Employment and Public Law contexts. She worked alongside her supervisors on a number of cases raising issues of equality, including Sarah Ewart’s challenge to Northern Ireland’s criminalisation of abortion and the BackTo60 judicial review. She has experience representing claimants and respondents in both preliminary and final hearings and has worked alongside her supervisor in an internal misconduct/whistleblowing investigation. She represented claimants in the High Court, applying for permission to judicially review plans to relocate a library for their failure to comply with the public sector equality duty.
Margherita is co-founder of Themis, the Intersectional Women Barristers’ Alliance. While working at the Supreme Court, and inspired by Lord Kerr's own efforts to promote and strengthen equality, Margherita joined forces in early 2020 with a colleague judicial assistant to found Themis. Margherita intends to align her practice with the work she does to promote the rights of women at the Bar, making equality and discrimination work central to her professional and personal life alike.
In addition to her interests in equality, Margherita continues to dedicate her spare time to the legal fight against climate change. She is currently working with Lord Carnwath, advising her local Extinction Rebellion group on legal obligations to promote sustainable housing, and continues to be involved in a number of climate related projects, including with FILE Foundation, the Chancery Lane Project and her Chambers' Green Team. She is particularly keen to explore the link between gender and climate and to increase her involvement as a barrister within the climate and human rights field.
Margherita is developing a strong practice in Employment Law, acting for claimants and respondents. During pupillage, she acted as sole counsel in a 3-day constructive unfair dismissal/wrongful dismissal claim on behalf of a Claimant who worked in the fashion industry and was instructed by one of the largest retailers in the country in a preliminary hearing. Since returning to practice, she acted as sole counsel on behalf of the Claimant in the Employment Tribunal on a complex seven-day unfair dismissal, direct discrimination, disability discrimination, harassment and victimisation claim.
Recent cases include
Instructed in a claim listed for 7 days on behalf of the Claimant against a public authority involving direct discrimination, discrimination arising from disability, unfair dismissal, victimisation and harassment (October 2020);
Instructed as junior counsel in a sexual harassment claim by a sportswoman against her former coach (Ongoing);
Instructed with Paras Gorasia to conduct an investigation into allegations of potential criminal behaviour amongst very senior individuals within a high profile organisation (June 2019);
Instructed on behalf of one of the largest retailers in the country in a Preliminary Hearing (June 2019);
Instructed in a claim listed for 3 days on behalf of a Claimant in the fashion industry for constructive unfair dismissal against her former employer (August 2019);
Instructed on various advisory matters for both Claimants/Respondent to assess merits of claims for LEI cover (Ongoing).
January 2020 – current. Assisting Lord Carnwath of Notting Hill on his work focusing on the incorporation of rule of law considerations in the COP 26 negotiations. Involves liaising and working with groups such as ClientEarth, The Chancery Lane Project, Legal Response International and the Grantham Institute at the LSE.
August – September 2020. Research Consultant with FILE Foundation, working on FILE’s Network Management and Climate Litigation Project, as well as assisting with research concerning Ecocide Law.
October 2020 – current. Providing informal legal advice and assistance to grassroots activists, including providing legal advice on actions against the police in the context of Climate protests and demonstrations (Article 10 and 11 ECHR), providing legal advice on legitimate expectations arising from local government policies prioritising sustainable housing, and providing miscellaneous legal advice to local Extinction Rebellion Groups
October 2020 – current. Member of Doughty Street Chambers’ Green Team. Working to “green” Chambers, to scope opportunities for climate and human rights litigation, and on miscellaneous projects (e.g. objecting in personal capacity to local tree felling).