John-Paul Waite

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“He is very practical, fair and sensible in his approach to litigation.” (Immigration) Chambers UK 2018

“John-Paul is a sound-minded opponent. He’s an excellent advocate and produces high-quality written work.” (Immigration) Chambers UK 2017

“Effective, quick in his turnaround of papers and very pleasant in his demeanor.” – Chambers UK 2014

Personal Injury:

Undertakes Defendant personal injury work for multi-national companies and Government departments, including stress at work claims, claims involving complex brain injuries and claims under the Fatal Accidents Act.

Police Law:

I am instructed in relation to all aspects of police law. A full copy of my CV in this area can be obtained from my clerks. Significant cases in the past 12 months include:

Civil Procedure:    Acting for the Serious and Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) in relation to an application in the Chancery Division for production of original documents held on a Court file in related bankruptcy proceedings.

Discipline: Acting for the Ministry of Defence police in relation to a major incident involving the shooting of live ammunition which has resulted in the bringing of multiple charges against the officers concerned.

Disclosure Instructed by SOCA to act as independent counsel tasked with determining whether documents in a high profile criminal investigation attracted LPP.

Employment::     Instructions in the last 12 months include:

  • Advising a Constabulary on an equal pay issue involving hundreds of employees and officers
  • Defending a claim for unfair dismissal brought by an employee who was dismissed by the Chief Constable after being the subject of criminal charges of which he was later acquitted.
  • Acting in a claim for indirect sex discrimination based upon the requirement to work a rolling shift pattern.

Governance:       Jointly instructed by a City Council and Chief Constable to advise upon the legality of governance arrangements in relation to a pioneering community safety project.

Personal Injury: Currently acting for Dorset Police in relation to a series of consolidated claims alleging that an unsafe control and restraint technique was taught to officers.

Procurement:     Advising a Constabulary on the public procurement requirements relating to the provision of courses to the public.

Public Law:  Acting for a Constabulary relation to a prospective claim for judicial review brought by a high profile individual who alleges that he was improperly issued with a police caution.

Unlawful arrest/detention: Acting in a claim for unlawful arrest which involves an issue as to the proper construction of s24(5) of PACE. I also have extensive experience of unlawful detention claims in a public law context (see below).

Employment Law:

I have extensive experience acting for public bodies and private companies in the Employment Tribunal, Employment Appeal Tribunal and Court of Appeal. I am the founding author of the Employment Tribunals Handbook, published by Bloomsbury (4th edition published in 2014).

Significant cases include the following:

  • Essop and Others v Home Office[2014] ICR 871- acting for the Home Office in relation to 50 Trade Union backed claims in which it is alleged that an internal assessment is indirectly discriminatory. The Home Office was successful before the Employment Tribunal but the Claimants successfully appealed to the EAT.     Permission to appeal has been granted by the Court of Appeal and the appeal is due to be heard in April 2015
  • Cordell v Foreign and Commonwealth Office[2012] ICR 280 – successfully acting for the FCO in the Employment Tribunal and Employment Appeal Tribunal in a test case concerning the correct choice of comparator in a claim for direct disability discrimination. The Claimant was supported by the Equality and Human Rights Commission:
  • Watts v High Quality Lifestyles[[2006] IRLR 850 – test case for determining the meaning of direct discrimination under the DDA.   Acting for the Claimant, an HIV sufferer who was dismissed from his employment 
  • UK Power Networks Ltd – Advising on the TUPE implications arising from the insourcing and reassignment of a major contract. 
  • Rashid and Others v EDF Energy– successfully acting for EDF Energy in multiple unfair dismissal claims arising from a major restructuring exercise. 
  • Pope and Buckley v Department for Transport Vehicle Operating Services– successfully acting for the Respondent in a claim relating to the imposition of a pay settlement and its resultant impact upon individual contracts of employment. 
  • Stevens v Ministry of Defenceacting for the Ministry of Defence in relation to a major claim for whistleblowing and unfair dismissal brought by a former employee of the department. The claim is currently part-heard and is due to be completed in May of this year. 
  • Kidson v UK Power Networks Ltd–advising the Respondent in relation to a high value claim by a former consultant of the company who claimed that he was an employee who had been unfairly dismissed.

Public / Administrative Law:

Significant cases include:

Supreme Court and House of Lords:

  • MS Palestinian Territories v SSHD [2010] UKSC 25. – acting as junior counsel for the SSHD in a case concerned with the Tribunal’s jurisdiction to consider a challenge to removal directions.
  • SSHD v Limbuela and Others [2005] UKHL 66 – acting as junior counsel for the SSHD in a case concerned with the proper construction of s55 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002.

Court of Appeal (recent cases only):

  • Rahman and Others v SSHD [2011] All ER (D) 155 – Challenge to withdrawal of policy.
  • DS Afghanistan v SSHD [2011] EWCA – Compatibility of SSHD’s policy on unaccompanied minors with domestic and international law.   Opposed by silk and junior.  
  • Anam v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2010] EWCA Civ 1140. –  ruling on the extent to which a failure to comply with departmental policy undermined the lawfulness of detention.   I was not led and was opposed by a silk and junior.


I represent public bodies in Coroners’ Inquests, with a particular expertise in death in custody cases. In addition to acting in Coroners’ Inquests, I have acted in three public inquiries investigating the deaths of Billy Wright, Rosemary Nelson and Robert Hamill.

Public Inquiries:

A full copy of my CV in this area can be obtained from my clerks have acted in the following three public inquiries:

The Billy Wright Inquiry: junior counsel acting for 80 prison officers.

The Hamill Inquiry: counsel for the forensic science service.

The Nelson Inquiry: counsel for individual members of the armed services.

Other areas:

I undertake work in the VAT and Duties Tribunal and the Immigration Services Tribunal on a regular basis. I also carry out occasional work in the area of personal injury law.


Co-author of Tottel’s Employment Tribunals Handbook (previously published by Tolley’s), the fourth edition of which was published in 2014.


1995 – Bar Vocational Course
1993-1994 – City University Diploma in Law (CPE)
1989-1992 – University of Leeds Bachelors Degree in History (2:1)
1982-1989 – Pimlico School

Inn: Middle Temple

Outside interests

Music,reading and football.