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Iris Ferber

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Telephone 020 7831 0222
Email iris.ferber@42br.com

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Introduction

Iris is an established Housing and Employment Law specialist, with a particular interest in discrimination law, including disability discrimination law. She is listed in both the Legal 500 and Chambers UK for her employment work, and in the Legal 500 for her housing work.

Solicitors say that “she is outstanding and has an excellent manner with clients” (Legal 500 2018). They also say that she “can be dropped in at the deep end at the last minute and come out on top”, and that she is “extremely professional and gives clear, reasoned advice” (Chambers UK 2018).

Ranked in UK Bar Chambers 2019     Legal 500 logo

Housing Profile

Iris has been a Housing specialist throughout her time at the Bar, ever since she completed her pupillage in Housing law in 2006.

She deals with all aspects of Housing law, and is particularly experienced in dealing with complex anti-social behaviour cases, including mental health issues, on behalf of both landlords and tenants.

She is particularly good at dealing with vulnerable clients and witnesses, and managing the complex legal arguments involved in Equality Act and Human Rights cases. Her expertise in discrimination law generally (including her employment law practice) makes her particularly adept at handling Equality Act defences.

Iris has extensive experience of homelessness litigation, including s204 appeals in the County Court, judicial review in the High Court, and appeals to the Court of Appeal. She regularly trains local authorities on homelessness law and procedure.

Iris also delivers very popular workshops in Chambers, and in-house, on all aspects of Housing litigation, and writes regularly for 42BR’s Housing Bulletin.

Employment Profile

Iris conducts the full range of Employment Tribunal work, acting regularly for both employees and employers.

She has represented claimants in many different types of case, from simple unfair dismissal claims, to complex, multi-day trials involving a variety of different legal claims.

She also works with a wide range of employers, from public sector employers and national companies with thousands of employees, to small businesses and individuals.

As a barrister who spends much of her working time in the Employment Tribunal, Iris is familiar with the way the system works, and can advise clients not only on the legal issues in their dispute, but also on practicalities and litigation tactics. She undertakes drafting and advisory work in all aspects of Employment Law.

Iris provides regular training to solicitors and companies: both seminars on current legal issues, and practical workshops on employee management and litigation. She is a regular contributor to 42BR’s Employment Newsletter.

Recent Cases

Iris has recently been dealing with a number of homelessness cases involving vulnerability and out-of-borough placements. She is currently involved in an appeal to the Court of Appeal on the question of whether a local authority can reconsider a homelessness decision before a local connection referral has been resolved.

Iris also continues to be instructed by the majority of the claimants in the ongoing litigation against the liquidators of the charity Kids Company, which is currently in the Employment Appeal Tribunal.

Reported Housing and Commercial Cases

  • R (Sambotin) v Brent LBC [2017] EWHC 1190 (Admin): Judicial review decision of Sir Wyn Williams, on a local authority’s power to reconsider a homelessness decision already communicated to an applicant, but still subject to an incomplete local connection referral (reported at [2017] HLR 31, and currently subject to an appeal to the Court of Appeal)
  • R (Farah) v Hillingdon LBC (2015 unreported, but judgment on Westlaw): High Court decision upholding local authority’s decision to refuse an extension of time for requesting a s202 review
  • Your Response Ltd v Datateam Business Media Ltd [2014] EWCA Civ 281: The Court of Appeal considered the law of liens, as applied to an electronic database (reported at [2015] QB 41)
  • Piper v Hales [2013] EWHC B1 (QB): Causation of loss in a breach of contract claim, relating to the driving of a Porsche 917 under race conditions 
  • Regis Direct Ltd v Hakeem [2012] EWHC 4328 (Ch): Decision of Norris J on the correct way to deal with an appeal from a bankruptcy order, where the basis for the order was wrong at the time it was made, but had since been corrected
  • Link Lending Ltd v Bustard [2010] EWCA Civ 424: The Court of Appeal considered actual occupation of a property under paragraph 2 of schedule 3 to the Land Registration Act 2002, where the occupier was involuntarily resident in a care home

Reported Employment Cases

  • Smith v Keeping Kids Company (in compulsory liquidation) [2016] UKET 2302881/2015: The former employees of Kids Company were entitled to the maximum protective award of 90 days’ pay, due to the charity’s failure to consult prior to redundancy; there were no special circumstances justifying the lack of consultation (currently subject to an appeal to the EAT)
  • Hartley v Foreign and Commonwealth Office Services [2016] ICR D17: Appeal in disability discrimination / harassment claim, based on the ET’s mistaken focus on the perception of those making the harassing remarks
  • Tabinas v KUSCO UKEAT/0349/14/BA: Application of the correct test for strike-out of a claim for not being actively pursued, under para. 37(1)(d) of the ET Rules 
  • Stephens v Kingston University UKEAT/0288/13/GE: EAT refused to overturn an ET’s decision that unfair dismissal and fixed-term detriment claims, brought six years after expiry of limitation, should be struck out (see http://www.bailii.org/...)

Education

Acting for both claimants (teachers and teaching assistants) and respondents (head teachers, schools and local authorities) in Employment Tribunal claims and appeals to the Employment Appeal Tribunal.

Professional memberships

  • Employment Lawyers Association
  • Employment Law Bar Association
  • Discrimination Law Association

Selected cases

  • Representing a teacher in a mental health-related dismissal and disability discrimination claim, including a 6-day ET trial, followed by an appeal to the EAT
  • Representing a local authority in a whistleblowing and unfair dismissal claim which was listed for a 10-day trial; assisting in achieving a favourable settlement before trial
  • Representing a local authority (and achieving settlement) in a whistleblowing and constructive dismissal claim arising from allegations made by a teaching assistant at a special needs school, involving highly sensitive material relating to the running of the school

Employment

Iris undertakes the full range of Employment Tribunal work and High Court employment work, including

  • Unfair dismissal (including constructive dismissal)
  • Redundancy
  • Public Interest Disclosure (Whistleblowing)
  • Equality Act claims, including direct discrimination, indirect discrimination, victimisation, harassment, disability discrimination, and pregnancy and maternity-related discrimination
  • Detriment claims of all kinds
  • TUPE
  • Restrictive covenants
  • Employment-related breach of contract and wages claims
  • Iris regularly acts for both employees and employers. She has represented claimants in many different types of case, from simple unfair dismissal claims, to complex, multi-day trials involving a variety of different legal claims.

Iris also works with a wide range of employer respondents, from public sector employers and national companies with thousands of employees, to small businesses and individual employers.

As a barrister who spends much of her working time in the Employment Tribunal, Iris is familiar with the way the system works, and can advise clients not only on the legal issues in their dispute, but also on practicalities and litigation tactics. She undertakes drafting and advisory work in all aspects of Employment Law.

Related accreditations

  • Knowledgeable employment law barrister who specialises in disability discrimination claims. She acts for both employers and employees in the public and private sectors.
    Strengths: “Outstanding. She has an excellent manner with both clients and the tribunal. She can be dropped in at the deep end at the last minute and come out on top. She is extremely professional and gives clear, reasoned advice.”
    Recent work: Successfully acted for multiple claimants in Anderson v Kids Company, a case concerning the special circumstances of the charity’s demise and whether this relieved the charity from redundancy consultation. Chambers and Partners 2018
  • “Iris’s success is based on prompt, thorough paperwork, and great effectiveness on her feet”

Related professional memberships

  • Employment Lawyers’ Association
  • Employment Law Bar Association
  • Discrimination Law Association

Related selected cases

  • Stephens v Kingston University UKEAT/0288/13/GE
  • Unfair dismissal and fixed-term detriment claims brought six years after expiry of limitation

News & events

Employment Newsletter

Welcome to the latest roundup from our barristers at 42 Bedford Row Employment Practice, with the latest news and unique insights from our team.

23rd August 2018 Read more

Housing

Iris is a housing law specialist. She has worked in housing law for 10 years, and specialised in housing law throughout her pupillage.

She represents local authorities, housing associations, private landlords, and private and public sector tenants in the whole scope of housing disputes, including:

  • possession
  • illegal subletting (including housing fraud)
  • succession
  • anti-social behaviour
  • homelessness
  • disrepair
  • EPA prosecutions
  • unlawful eviction
  • claims under the Protection from Harassment Act
  • Iris is particularly good at dealing with vulnerable clients and witnesses, and managing the complex legal arguments involved in Equality Act and Human Rights cases. Her expertise in discrimination law generally (including her employment law practice) makes her particularly adept at handling Equality Act defences.

Related accreditations

  • “Iris’s success is based on prompt, thorough paperwork, and great effectiveness on her feet”

Related news and articles

  • Mental Health Issues in Housing Litigation

News & events

Mental Health Issues in Housing Litigation

Mental Health Issues in Housing Litigation During April and May 2017, we ran a 2-part workshop in Chambers exploring the law and procedure on dealing with mental health issues in housing cases. This Bulletin is intended as a follow-up note for those of you who attended, and as a general practice note for those of

30th May 2017 Read more

Housing Bulletin No 18 – Forfeiture for non-payment of service charges

Welcome to this, the 18th bulletin from the Housing Team. We hope that you will find the content of interest: if you wish to receive further updates you can subscribe by replying to housing@42br.com Forfeiture for non-payment of service charges Last month, we ran a workshop in Chambers exploring the law and procedure of forfeiting a

9th January 2017 Read more

Property

Iris represents and advises clients in property-related matters of all kinds, including professional negligence claims arising from property transactions. She appears in the County Court, the High Court, and the Property Tribunal.

She regularly advises on matters relating to land development, such as sale of land, mortgages, restrictive covenants, service charges, and leasehold enfranchisement. She also has a great deal of experience in dealing with complex cohabitation disputes, particularly those involving trusts of land.

Her experience includes a broad range of landlord and tenant disputes, both private and public, and both commercial and residential.

Iris undertakes drafting and advisory work in all areas of property law. She deals with paperwork quickly and thoroughly, and is praised by solicitors for her practical, readable advice.

Related accreditations

  • “Iris’s success is based on prompt, thorough paperwork, and great effectiveness on her feet”

Related professional memberships

  • Chancery Bar Association
  • Property Bar Association

Related selected cases

  • Link Lending Ltd v Bustard [2010] EWCA Civ 424
  • Actual occupation of a property under paragraph 2 of schedule 3 to the Land Registration Act 2002, where the occupier was involuntarily resident in a care home

News & events

Housing Bulletin No 18 – Forfeiture for non-payment of service charges

Welcome to this, the 18th bulletin from the Housing Team. We hope that you will find the content of interest: if you wish to receive further updates you can subscribe by replying to housing@42br.com Forfeiture for non-payment of service charges Last month, we ran a workshop in Chambers exploring the law and procedure of forfeiting a

9th January 2017 Read more

Qualifications and Appointments

  • MPhil (Cantab), Selwyn College, Cambridge
  • Richard Isaacson Memorial Scholarship 2005

News & events

News & events

Employment Newsletter

Welcome to the latest roundup from our barristers at 42 Bedford Row Employment Practice, with the latest news and unique insights from our team.

23rd August 2018 Read more

Mental Health Issues in Housing Litigation

Mental Health Issues in Housing Litigation During April and May 2017, we ran a 2-part workshop in Chambers exploring the law and procedure on dealing with mental health issues in housing cases. This Bulletin is intended as a follow-up note for those of you who attended, and as a general practice note for those of

30th May 2017 Read more

Housing Bulletin No 18 – Forfeiture for non-payment of service charges

Welcome to this, the 18th bulletin from the Housing Team. We hope that you will find the content of interest: if you wish to receive further updates you can subscribe by replying to housing@42br.com Forfeiture for non-payment of service charges Last month, we ran a workshop in Chambers exploring the law and procedure of forfeiting a

9th January 2017 Read more