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MEET:

Ifeanyi Odogwu

"He is a really measured and intelligent advocate. He is forensic rather than agenda-driven, which is highly effective; He does a lot of different work and some very, very heavy-hitting cases."

Chambers & Partners 2021
Called: 2011

Ifeanyi specialises in public law in the field of inquests and public inquiries (where he is consistently ranked as a leading junior by both Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners), civil claims, professional discipline and regulation, discrimination, and associated challenges by way of judicial review. He is also recommended by both Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners as a leading practitioner in sports law, where he has experience of arbitrations, disciplinary proceedings, and commercial disputes.

Ifeanyi won the Lawyer of the Year award at the British Nigeria Law Forum 2019. He has been shortlisted in the ‘Future Leaders’ award category for Outstanding Contribution to Diversity and Inclusion by the Chambers Bar Awards 2019. He was also shortlisted in the Newcomer category of the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year.

Ifeanyi is recognised in Chambers and Partners 2021 for his extensive experience of inquests and public inquiries.

He has expertise in deaths in state custody which engage Article 2 of the ECHR, particularly where some form of restraint has occurred. He has gained a reputation for achieving some of the most critical and devastating conclusions for bereaved families against State Agencies in inquests. Ifeanyi has acted in several high-profile inquests including the Hillsborough inquest. He recently acted for the Kevin Clarke family in the controversial case of a black man restrained by the police, whilst saying “I can’t breathe”, which was the focus of a panorama documentary due to the parallels to the killing of George Floyd in the US which sparked global protests in 2020.

Ifeanyi has strong practice in public inquiries involving national disasters and deaths/ill-treatment caused by the state. Notable cases include the Azelle Rodney Inquiry. He is currently representing more than 300 of the bereaved and surviving residents in the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

Ifeanyi regularly acts for claimants in civil actions against the police and other public authorities, including personal injury and fatal accident claims, data privacy, human rights, and discrimination.

Ifeanyi has obtained substantial damages and settlements for bereaved families representing claimants in civil claims arising from inquests. Recent work includes securing a £450,000 settlement against Devon and Cornwall Police (2021) and Fatal Accidents Act 1976 claim following a restraint death in custody, and £175,000 settlement against Wirral Borough Council (2021) in a claim under Human Rights Act 1998.

Ifeanyi’s public law practice focuses on the intersection of human rights and the criminal justice system, and includes regulatory judicial review matters. He has particular expertise in challenges arising from inquests, where he has been at the cutting edge of the law in this area, bringing a number of successful challenges against Coroner decisions, including; R (Chidlow) v Senior Coroner for Blackpool and Flyde [2019] EWHC 581 (Admin) and also in R (Hamilton-Jackson) v Assistant Coroner for Mid Kent and Medway [2016] EWHC 1796 (Admin). He recently secured a quashing and an order for a fresh inquest following an Attorney General’s fiat and order under s. 13 of the Coroners Act 1988 (2021).

Ifeanyi is consistently ranked as a leading barrister in sports law in Chambers and Partners and The Legal 500. He is experienced in regulatory issues involving disciplinaries, equalities and discrimination, doping charges, integrity matters, and safeguarding.

He acts for players/athletes, managers, intermediaries, clubs, and sporting bodies before a variety of tribunals, as well as arbitrations, and in commercial disputes.

Ifeanyi is regularly appointed to sports arbitrary panels including Sport Resolutions’ Panel of Arbitrators and Mediator, the Football Association (FA) Judicial Panel, The FA Anti-Discrimination Chairman Panel, the EFL ‘Player Related Dispute Commission’, and Basketball England. He has Chaired a number of high-profile FA misconduct cases in recent years, including Jose Mourinho, Rafa Benitez and Pep Guardiola.

Ifeanyi also has experience conducting independent reviews and investigations in sport. He Chaired the first ever review by England Hockey into handling of allegations of discrimination.

Ifeanyi is developing a regulatory practice, with a particular focus on professional discipline and also including fitness to practice hearings at the GMC, NMC and HCPC.

Ifeanyi has experience in a range of employment matters. He has a particular interest in the interface of employment related sports disputes and equality.

Ifeanyi has a passion for empowering marginalised and disadvantaged groups and social mobility. Prior to coming to the Bar, he volunteered at Reprieve, the Free Representation Unit, and interned at the Public Defender’s Office in North Carolina. He provided ‘Know Your Rights’ workshops to community groups and schools. He was a mentor for young people at the Amos Bursary and has also worked with Dianne Abbott MP’s London Schools and the Black Child (‘LSBC’) initiative where he was a speaker at the 10 year anniversary conference.

Ifeanyi works closely with the INQUEST Lawyer Group (ILG) and also sits on the Steering Group (ILGSG).

He is a member of the StopWatch Legal Group and recently joined the Policy and Lawyers Network for UNJUST, which will have a focus on racial disparities in policing.

In January 2016, Ifeanyi delivered a four-day training workshop in Abuja to members of the Nigerian judiciary in child rights, as part of the Bar Human Rights Committee which partnered with Coram Children’s Legal Centre and UNICEF.

Ifeanyi is a regular speaker at sports law conferences. He has recently been a speaker at the LawInSport’s Football Law 2019 conference.

During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Ifeanyi has been a speaker on a number of virtual conferences, including ‘The Impact of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) Pandemic on Sports, Banking & Finance Law’ by BNLF and on ‘Racism in Football’ as part of the Law In Sport Football Law Conference 2020.

‘Future Leaders’ nominee for Outstanding Contribution to Diversity and Inclusion at the Chambers Bar Awards (2019).

Winner of Lawyer of the Year 2019 at the British Nigeria Forum Awards 2019.

Nominated Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year, Newcomer of the Year Award (2018)

Dianne Abbott MP London Schools and the Black Child (LSBC) Outstanding Achievement Award 2011

Middle Temple 2010 Lord Diplock Scholar

Kingston University Law School’s ‘American Exchange’ scholarship 2007.

  • LLB, First Class (Kingston)
  • Law with American Law (University of North Carolina Charlotte)
  • Lord Diplock Scholar, Middle Temple
DIRECTORY RECOMMENDATIONS

"Ifeanyi has a real teamwork approach. He is excellent on his feet and has the ability to bring the strands of a case together. He builds excellent rapport with clients."

Legal 500 2021, Inquests and Inquiries

"He is a really measured and intelligent advocate for families of the deceased. He is forensic rather than agenda-driven, which is highly effective." "He does a lot of different work and some very, very heavy-hitting cases."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Inquests and Inquiries

“He has an impressive track record of appearances in Article 2 jury inquests, and has also brought several judicial review challenges to coroners' decisions.”

Chambers & Partners 2021, Inquests and Inquiries

"Particularly notable for his frequent appointments as chair of the FA's Regulatory Commission in widely reported disciplinary proceedings."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Sport

"Ifeanyi has a real teamwork approach. He is excellent on his feet and has the ability to bring the strands of a case together. He builds excellent rapport with clients."

Legal 500 2021, Inquests and Inquiries

"Extremely user-friendly and knowledgeable, in whatever capacity you encounter him. A refreshingly modern practitioner, who is the face of the Bar it aspires to be."

Legal 500 2021, Sport

"He's a deadly cross-examiner: a smiling assassin. He does it by being charming and making what he's saying seem like effortless common sense. He's great at cross-examining difficult witnesses and carries a lot of authority in court. He always has an excellent client manner: he involves clients in strategy and makes sure they understand what's going on."

Chambers & Partners 2020

"He is very prominent and respected, sitting regularly on the most high-profile misconduct cases for the FA."

Legal 500 2020

“He is sensible, asks intelligent questions, and always gives a fair hearing.”

Chambers & Partners 2019

“A real up-and comer who has progressed speedily to become a well-known practitioner; has acted on some of the FA’s highest profile cases.”

Legal 500 2019

“He possesses gravitas and intellect, which are of tremendous benefit to all his clients."

Legal 500 2017
Matrix Chambers
24 HOUR ASSISTANCE
+44 (0)20 7404 3447
Called: 2011

"He is a really measured and intelligent advocate. He is forensic rather than agenda-driven, which is highly effective; He does a lot of different work and some very, very heavy-hitting cases."

Chambers & Partners 2021

MAIN AREAS OF PRACTICE

  • Civil Liberties and Human Rights
  • Employment Law
  • Public Law
  • Sports Law

Ifeanyi Odogwu

Contact Ifeanyi: IfeanyiOdogwu@matrixlaw.co.uk | +44 (0)20 7404 3447

Contact Ifeanyi's Practice Team (Team X): TeamX@matrixlaw.co.uk


Ifeanyi specialises in public law in the field of inquests and public inquiries (where he is consistently ranked as a leading junior by both Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners), civil claims, professional discipline and regulation, discrimination, and associated challenges by way of judicial review. He is also recommended by both Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners as a leading practitioner in sports law, where he has experience of arbitrations, disciplinary proceedings, and commercial disputes.

Ifeanyi won the Lawyer of the Year award at the British Nigeria Law Forum 2019. He has been shortlisted in the ‘Future Leaders’ award category for Outstanding Contribution to Diversity and Inclusion by the Chambers Bar Awards 2019. He was also shortlisted in the Newcomer category of the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year.

Inquests and Inquiries

Ifeanyi is recognised in Chambers and Partners 2021 for his extensive experience of inquests and public inquiries. He has expertise in deaths in state custody which engage Article 2 of the ECHR, particularly where some form of restraint has occurred. He has gained a reputation for achieving some of the most critical and devastating conclusions for bereaved families against State Agencies in inquests. Ifeanyi has acted in several high-profile inquests including the Hillsborough inquest. He recently acted for the Kevin Clarke family in the controversial case of a black man restrained by the police, whilst saying “I can’t breathe”, which was the focus of a panorama documentary due to the parallels to the killing of George Floyd in the US which sparked global protests in 2020. Ifeanyi has strong practice in public inquiries involving national disasters and deaths/ill-treatment caused by the state. Notable cases include the Azelle Rodney Inquiry. He is currently representing more than 300 of the bereaved and surviving residents in the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

Claims Against the Police and Public Authorities

Ifeanyi regularly acts for claimants in civil actions against the police and other public authorities, including personal injury and fatal accident claims, data privacy, human rights, and discrimination. Ifeanyi has obtained substantial damages and settlements for bereaved families representing claimants in civil claims arising from inquests. Recent work includes securing a £450,000 settlement against Devon and Cornwall Police (2021) and Fatal Accidents Act 1976 claim following a restraint death in custody, and £175,000 settlement against Wirral Borough Council (2021) in a claim under Human Rights Act 1998.

Administrative and Public Law

Ifeanyi’s public law practice focuses on the intersection of human rights and the criminal justice system, and includes regulatory judicial review matters. He has particular expertise in challenges arising from inquests, where he has been at the cutting edge of the law in this area, bringing a number of successful challenges against Coroner decisions, including; R (Chidlow) v Senior Coroner for Blackpool and Flyde [2019] EWHC 581 (Admin) and also in R (Hamilton-Jackson) v Assistant Coroner for Mid Kent and Medway [2016] EWHC 1796 (Admin). He recently secured a quashing and an order for a fresh inquest following an Attorney General’s fiat and order under s. 13 of the Coroners Act 1988 (2021).

Sports Law

Ifeanyi is consistently ranked as a leading barrister in sports law in Chambers and Partners and The Legal 500. He is experienced in regulatory issues involving disciplinaries, equalities and discrimination, doping charges, integrity matters, and safeguarding. He acts for players/athletes, managers, intermediaries, clubs, and sporting bodies before a variety of tribunals, as well as arbitrations, and in commercial disputes. Ifeanyi is regularly appointed to sports arbitrary panels including Sport Resolutions’ Panel of Arbitrators and Mediator, the Football Association (FA) Judicial Panel, The FA Anti-Discrimination Chairman Panel, the EFL ‘Player Related Dispute Commission’, and Basketball England. He has Chaired a number of high-profile FA misconduct cases in recent years, including Jose Mourinho, Rafa Benitez and Pep Guardiola. Ifeanyi also has experience conducting independent reviews and investigations in sport. He Chaired the first ever review by England Hockey into handling of allegations of discrimination.

Professional Discipline and Regulation

Ifeanyi is developing a regulatory practice, with a particular focus on professional discipline and also including fitness to practice hearings at the GMC, NMC and HCPC.

Employment and Discrimination Law

Ifeanyi has experience in a range of employment matters. He has a particular interest in the interface of employment related sports disputes and equality.

Background and associated work

Ifeanyi has a passion for empowering marginalised and disadvantaged groups and social mobility. Prior to coming to the Bar, he volunteered at Reprieve, the Free Representation Unit, and interned at the Public Defender’s Office in North Carolina. He provided ‘Know Your Rights’ workshops to community groups and schools. He was a mentor for young people at the Amos Bursary and has also worked with Dianne Abbott MP’s London Schools and the Black Child (‘LSBC’) initiative where he was a speaker at the 10 year anniversary conference. Ifeanyi works closely with the INQUEST Lawyer Group (ILG) and also sits on the Steering Group (ILGSG). He is a member of the StopWatch Legal Group and recently joined the Policy and Lawyers Network for UNJUST, which will have a focus on racial disparities in policing.

Training and Seminars

In January 2016, Ifeanyi delivered a four-day training workshop in Abuja to members of the Nigerian judiciary in child rights, as part of the Bar Human Rights Committee which partnered with Coram Children’s Legal Centre and UNICEF. Ifeanyi is a regular speaker at sports law conferences. He has recently been a speaker at the LawInSport’s Football Law 2019 conference. During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Ifeanyi has been a speaker on a number of virtual conferences, including ‘The Impact of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) Pandemic on Sports, Banking & Finance Law’ by BNLF and on ‘Racism in Football’ as part of the Law In Sport Football Law Conference 2020.

Awards

‘Future Leaders’ nominee for Outstanding Contribution to Diversity and Inclusion at the Chambers Bar Awards (2019). Winner of Lawyer of the Year 2019 at the British Nigeria Forum Awards 2019. Nominated Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year, Newcomer of the Year Award (2018) Dianne Abbott MP London Schools and the Black Child (LSBC) Outstanding Achievement Award 2011 Middle Temple 2010 Lord Diplock Scholar Kingston University Law School’s ‘American Exchange’ scholarship 2007.

Education

LLB, First Class (Kingston) Law with American Law (University of North Carolina Charlotte) Lord Diplock Scholar, Middle Temple

DIRECTORY RECOMMENDATIONS

"Ifeanyi has a real teamwork approach. He is excellent on his feet and has the ability to bring the strands of a case together. He builds excellent rapport with clients."

Legal 500 2021, Inquests and Inquiries

"He is a really measured and intelligent advocate for families of the deceased. He is forensic rather than agenda-driven, which is highly effective." "He does a lot of different work and some very, very heavy-hitting cases."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Inquests and Inquiries

“He has an impressive track record of appearances in Article 2 jury inquests, and has also brought several judicial review challenges to coroners' decisions.”

Chambers & Partners 2021, Inquests and Inquiries

"Particularly notable for his frequent appointments as chair of the FA's Regulatory Commission in widely reported disciplinary proceedings."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Sport

"Ifeanyi has a real teamwork approach. He is excellent on his feet and has the ability to bring the strands of a case together. He builds excellent rapport with clients."

Legal 500 2021, Inquests and Inquiries

"Extremely user-friendly and knowledgeable, in whatever capacity you encounter him. A refreshingly modern practitioner, who is the face of the Bar it aspires to be."

Legal 500 2021, Sport

"He's a deadly cross-examiner: a smiling assassin. He does it by being charming and making what he's saying seem like effortless common sense. He's great at cross-examining difficult witnesses and carries a lot of authority in court. He always has an excellent client manner: he involves clients in strategy and makes sure they understand what's going on."

Chambers & Partners 2020

"He is very prominent and respected, sitting regularly on the most high-profile misconduct cases for the FA."

Legal 500 2020

“He is sensible, asks intelligent questions, and always gives a fair hearing.”

Chambers & Partners 2019

“A real up-and comer who has progressed speedily to become a well-known practitioner; has acted on some of the FA’s highest profile cases.”

Legal 500 2019

“He possesses gravitas and intellect, which are of tremendous benefit to all his clients."

Legal 500 2017