Zoë Leventhal - Matrix Chambers
×
MEET:

Zoë Leventhal

"Well on her way to silk. Really excellent and very approachable."

CHAMBERS & PARTNERS 2021
Called: 2002

Zoë practises in all areas of public law and human rights and is listed as a leading junior in these areas. She has particular expertise in social security and welfare benefits law, healthcare, mental health and mental capacitylocal governmentequalities dutiesimmigrationEU law, planning and environmental law. She is a member of the Attorney General’s ‘A’ Panel of Counsel, having previously been a member of the ‘B’ Panel (appointed 2013) and ‘C’ Panel (appointed 2007). She is described in the directories as showing “total dedication to the cases she is involved in” and being “extremely clear, concise and accurate on paper and in oral advocacy.”

Zoë is consistently instructed in high profile and complex cases both on her own and as a sought after junior. She is committed to working for all sides across her areas of practice and has a diverse range of clients including central government departments, local authorities and other public bodies as well as individuals, charities & NGOs and corporate entities.

Recent highlights include:

  • Acting for Rights of Women in their recent case establishing that the evidence requirements for victims of domestic violence to obtain legal aid in family cases were unlawful (Rights of Women v Lord Chancellor [2016] EWCA Civ 91; [2016] 1 W.L.R. 2543);
  • Acting for the National Aids Trust in their successful challenge to the NHS’s decision that it did not have the power to commission a new HIV prevention drug (National Aids Trust v NHS England & LGA [2016] EWCA Civ 1100; [2017] 1 W.L.R. 1477).

Zoë acts for individuals (often through FRU), for NGOs (such as CPAG, Z2K, PLP and Mind) and for the DWP, CSA, HMRC and DoH. She has developed considerable expertise across the full spectrum of benefits, in addition to child support as well related pensions issues. Zoë’s cases frequently involve HRA and/or EU law issues.

Zoe has a strong reputation in health, mental capacity and community care work, and has been involved in some of the leading cases in recent years. She acts for and against NHS bodies in contractual / pensions disputes, and in judicial reviews for and against NHS bodies and local authorities in respect of primary, secondary and social services issues (e.g. GP surgery closures, NHS continuing healthcare, consultation, health inequalities, section 17 support and asylum support). She appears regularly in the Court of Protection on medical treatment and personal welfare cases (including DoLs), and also acts for the Care Quality Commission.

Zoë’s work in this area encompasses asylum and immigration work for both claimants (individuals and commercial organisations) and the Home Office in the Upper Tribunal and the Courts at all levels. She also acts in unlawful detention matters for both sides.

Zoë undertakes a range of work in this field including for the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, for the Disclosure and Barring Service (formerly the ISA/DoH) in relation to safeguarding children and vulnerable adults, for Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission, and for commercial organisations and individuals. She appears regularly in a variety of courts and tribunals in this context.

Zoë regularly advises local authorities and individuals across a broad range of subject matters including housing, education, local government finance, standards issues, planning, highways, mental health, community care and equalities. Her planning & highways expertise is set out under the above link.

Zoë’s work often raises varied and complex issues under EU law. In the social security field, Zoë has undertaken a number of EU law cases raising issues under the Citizenship Directive, Regulation 1408/71, Regulation 883/2004, the EU Charter on Fundamental Rights and the TFEU itself.

In relation to her environmental and planning work, Zoë advises on the EIA/SEA, Habitats and Air Quality Directives and on the Aarhus Convention on Access to Environmental Information, as well as on information rights generally. She also has experience advising on the Services Directive and on EU procurement and state aid matters.

Zoë has varied experience of acting for all sides in statutory planning challenges/judicial reviews and planning inquiries including large scale housing and retail schemes. She regularly advises individuals, developers, government department and local authorities on a variety of planning, highways and related CPO issues.

In 2015, Zoë was listed as a leading planning junior in the Legal 500 (“highly impressive in the High Court and completely on top of her subject”) and was ranked in the top 6 barristers for most appearances in the Planning Court in Planning Magazine’s survey. She has been regularly rated as one of the top planning barristers under the age of 35 in the same survey. She was an editor of the Planning Encyclopedia from 2004-2009. She regularly provides training to local authority officers on a broad range of issues.

Zoë’s practice in this area involves appearing for and advising central government, the Environment Agency, local planning authorities, developers, individuals and NGOs in judicial reviews and statutory challenges and in related enforcement proceedings. She has expertise in relation to EIA and SEA, the Habitats Directive and on a broad range of other environmental issues such as air quality, noise, tree protection and flood risk.

Zoë read Classics at Downing College, Cambridge and did her CPE at City University. Zoë is a member of ALBA, the HRLA, PEBA and UKELA.

Assistant editor of the Planning Encyclopedia (2005-2009).

Human Rights Practice (Simor ed), Assistant editor (2003-4), Contributor (2004-2009).

Case commentator for Education Law Journal (2003-9).

Zoë is bilingual French/English. She also speaks good Italian and basic Spanish and Portuguese.

Zoë regularly gives seminars to a wide range of audiences including local authorities, the Government Legal Department, solicitors’ firms and other groups such as Young ALBA. Zoë has trained lawyers and members of the judiciary on the ECHR in Albania, Turkey and Georgia on behalf of the Council of Europe and local authority officers on behalf of the British Institute of Human Rights.

7 Feb 2017: Caps, cuts and welfare reform: other recent developments

7 Feb 2017: Update on the Personal Independence Payment

12 Oct 2016: Health & Social Care: Duties to non-UK nationals

29 Sep 2016: Legislating for Brexit

22 Feb 2016: Commissioning decisions, limited resources, ECHR rights and best interests

14 Jul 2015: Challenges to screening decisions – a review of the recent case law presentation

14 Jul 2015: Challenges to screening decisions – a review of the recent case law

4 Jun 2015: Social Security and Human Rights

4 Jun 2015: Social Security and Human Rights – Slides

13 Mar 2015: EIA screening: themes from the recent case law

24 Feb 2015: Care Act 2014: Safeguarding Provisions

10 Feb 2015: Duties of Candour

1 Apr 2014: The HS2 Hybrid Bill: Preparing evidence and presenting the case

1 Aug 2012: Plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose? Lessons on Planning Reform from the Dobry Review of Development Control [2012] JPL 899

Zoë is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy. In order to provide legal services to her clients, including advice and representation services, Zoë needs to collect and hold personal data. This includes her client’s personal data and the personal data of others who feature in the matter upon which she is instructed. To read Zoë’s privacy notice in full, please see here.

Zoë is regulated by the Bar Standards Board and accepts instructions under Standard Contractual Terms. To find out more information on this and the way we work at Matrix, including our fee transparency statement, please see our see our service standards

DIRECTORY RECOMMENDATIONS

"Well on her way to silk. Really excellent and very approachable."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Administrative & Public Law

"Her written work is exceptional and she’s very switched on.” “She is clear and thoughtful in the way she presents her arguments."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Civil Liberties & Human Rights

"She cuts straight to the point very easily and is a precise and economical lawyer – she doesn’t waste time.” “Excellent communication skills and analytical abilities.” “She’s down to earth and highly approachable, and has excellent public law knowledge. She’s also an impressive advocate and is very robust when she needs to be, delivering great results for her clients."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Community Care

"She’s brilliant.” “She has a very good legal mind."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Environment

"She’s a creative, knowledgeable and very reliable barrister, and is a real pleasure to work with.” “Absolutely outstanding. She’s incredibly intelligent, dedicated and hard-working. She’s very patient and approachable with clients, and highly effective at dismantling her opponents’ case."

Chambers & Partners 2020, Administrative & Public Law

"She’s extremely responsive, proactive and very good to work with. Her written work is of the highest quality."

Chambers & Partners 2020, Community Care

"An extremely personable and approachable barrister who is very knowledgeable on the law. She is both intelligent and strategic.” “Very persistent in a measured way when on her feet” and “a great legal analyst."

Chambers & Partners 2019, Administrative & Public Law

"She is intelligent as well as calm, and very user-friendly."

Chambers & Partners 2019, Civil Liberties & Human Rights

"A superstar who does an impressive mix of significant work for claimants as well as for central government.” “She’s very pleasant and modest, which can lull the opposition into a false sense of security, but she’s always well prepared and very bright and makes really good arguments."

Chambers & Partners 2019, Community Care

"Extremely hard-working and dedicated advocate who really does her absolute best for clients. She combines real intellectual strength with a very attractive presentation style in court.” “She works hard to master the detail on a case and gives good, practical advice."

Chambers & Partners 2018, Administrative & Public Law

"Her submissions are impressive; she is articulate, fights her corner in a fair way, and has the right touch.” “Zoe is totally committed and puts in a huge amount of time and effort."

Chambers & Partners 2018, Civil Liberties & Human Rights

"She is a very creative and tenacious lawyer, who’s particularly good at cutting to the chase and getting good results."

Chambers & Partners 2018, Community Care

"Total dedication to the cases she is involved in. Her attention to detail and grasp of the issues is hugely impressive.” She is “extremely clear, concise and accurate on paper and in oral advocacy. A very warm and engaging advocate.” “A very good lawyer but she also understands the social policy, which is very important."

Chambers & Partners 2017, Administrative & Public Law

"Routinely instructed in high-profile matters in the human rights field, she displays a particular flair for environmental, planning, immigration and social security law… “She always sees both sides of the argument, and has a really strong knowledge of the legislation.” “She shows total dedication to her cases and clients."

Chambers & Partners 2017, Civil Liberties & Human Rights

"Incredibly thorough and very intelligent."

Legal 500 2017, Administrative & Public Law

"She is great at wading through complex issues and condensing into salient points."

Legal 500 2017, Planning

"Recommended for matters with EU or human rights elements."

Legal 500 2016, Planning

"Highly impressive in the High Court and completely on top of her subject."

Legal 500 2015, Planning

"A very skilful advocate who can make the best of a difficult case."

Legal 500 2015, Administrative & Public Law
Matrix Chambers
24 HOUR ASSISTANCE
+44 (0)20 7404 3447
Called: 2002

"Well on her way to silk. Really excellent and very approachable."

CHAMBERS & PARTNERS 2021

MAIN AREAS OF PRACTICE

  • Community Care Law
  • Discrimination and Equality
  • Environmental Law and Natural Resources
  • EU Law
  • Healthcare, Mental Health and Mental Capacity
  • Civil Liberties and Human Rights
  • Immigration, Asylum and Free Movement
  • Local Government Law
  • Public Law
  • Police, Inquests and Prison
  • Health and Social Care (including welfare benefits)
  • Commercial Public Law

Zoë Leventhal

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

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


Zoë practises in all areas of public law and human rights and is listed as a leading junior in these areas. She has particular expertise in social security and welfare benefits law, healthcare, mental health and mental capacitylocal governmentequalities dutiesimmigrationEU law, planning and environmental law. She is a member of the Attorney General’s ‘A’ Panel of Counsel, having previously been a member of the ‘B’ Panel (appointed 2013) and ‘C’ Panel (appointed 2007). She is described in the directories as showing “total dedication to the cases she is involved in” and being “extremely clear, concise and accurate on paper and in oral advocacy.”

Zoë is consistently instructed in high profile and complex cases both on her own and as a sought after junior. She is committed to working for all sides across her areas of practice and has a diverse range of clients including central government departments, local authorities and other public bodies as well as individuals, charities & NGOs and corporate entities.

Recent highlights include:

  • Acting for Rights of Women in their recent case establishing that the evidence requirements for victims of domestic violence to obtain legal aid in family cases were unlawful (Rights of Women v Lord Chancellor [2016] EWCA Civ 91; [2016] 1 W.L.R. 2543);
  • Acting for the National Aids Trust in their successful challenge to the NHS’s decision that it did not have the power to commission a new HIV prevention drug (National Aids Trust v NHS England & LGA [2016] EWCA Civ 1100; [2017] 1 W.L.R. 1477).

Social Security/Welfare Benefits

Zoë acts for individuals (often through FRU), for NGOs (such as CPAG, Z2K, PLP and Mind) and for the DWP, CSA, HMRC and DoH. She has developed considerable expertise across the full spectrum of benefits, in addition to child support as well related pensions issues. Zoë’s cases frequently involve HRA and/or EU law issues.

Health (Including Mental Health), Mental Capacity and Community Care

Zoe has a strong reputation in health, mental capacity and community care work, and has been involved in some of the leading cases in recent years. She acts for and against NHS bodies in contractual / pensions disputes, and in judicial reviews for and against NHS bodies and local authorities in respect of primary, secondary and social services issues (e.g. GP surgery closures, NHS continuing healthcare, consultation, health inequalities, section 17 support and asylum support). She appears regularly in the Court of Protection on medical treatment and personal welfare cases (including DoLs), and also acts for the Care Quality Commission.

Immigration, Asylum and Detention

Zoë’s work in this area encompasses asylum and immigration work for both claimants (individuals and commercial organisations) and the Home Office in the Upper Tribunal and the Courts at all levels. She also acts in unlawful detention matters for both sides.

Regulatory, Ombudsmen and Education

Zoë undertakes a range of work in this field including for the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, for the Disclosure and Barring Service (formerly the ISA/DoH) in relation to safeguarding children and vulnerable adults, for Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission, and for commercial organisations and individuals. She appears regularly in a variety of courts and tribunals in this context.

Local Government Law

Zoë regularly advises local authorities and individuals across a broad range of subject matters including housing, education, local government finance, standards issues, planning, highways, mental health, community care and equalities. Her planning & highways expertise is set out under the above link.

European Law

Zoë’s work often raises varied and complex issues under EU law. In the social security field, Zoë has undertaken a number of EU law cases raising issues under the Citizenship Directive, Regulation 1408/71, Regulation 883/2004, the EU Charter on Fundamental Rights and the TFEU itself. In relation to her environmental and planning work, Zoë advises on the EIA/SEA, Habitats and Air Quality Directives and on the Aarhus Convention on Access to Environmental Information, as well as on information rights generally. She also has experience advising on the Services Directive and on EU procurement and state aid matters.

Planning Law

Zoë has varied experience of acting for all sides in statutory planning challenges/judicial reviews and planning inquiries including large scale housing and retail schemes. She regularly advises individuals, developers, government department and local authorities on a variety of planning, highways and related CPO issues. In 2015, Zoë was listed as a leading planning junior in the Legal 500 (“highly impressive in the High Court and completely on top of her subject”) and was ranked in the top 6 barristers for most appearances in the Planning Court in Planning Magazine’s survey. She has been regularly rated as one of the top planning barristers under the age of 35 in the same survey. She was an editor of the Planning Encyclopedia from 2004-2009. She regularly provides training to local authority officers on a broad range of issues.

Environmental Law

Zoë’s practice in this area involves appearing for and advising central government, the Environment Agency, local planning authorities, developers, individuals and NGOs in judicial reviews and statutory challenges and in related enforcement proceedings. She has expertise in relation to EIA and SEA, the Habitats Directive and on a broad range of other environmental issues such as air quality, noise, tree protection and flood risk.

Qualifications

Zoë read Classics at Downing College, Cambridge and did her CPE at City University. Zoë is a member of ALBA, the HRLA, PEBA and UKELA. Assistant editor of the Planning Encyclopedia (2005-2009). Human Rights Practice (Simor ed), Assistant editor (2003-4), Contributor (2004-2009). Case commentator for Education Law Journal (2003-9). Zoë is bilingual French/English. She also speaks good Italian and basic Spanish and Portuguese.

Publications

Zoë regularly gives seminars to a wide range of audiences including local authorities, the Government Legal Department, solicitors’ firms and other groups such as Young ALBA. Zoë has trained lawyers and members of the judiciary on the ECHR in Albania, Turkey and Georgia on behalf of the Council of Europe and local authority officers on behalf of the British Institute of Human Rights. 7 Feb 2017: Caps, cuts and welfare reform: other recent developments 7 Feb 2017: Update on the Personal Independence Payment 12 Oct 2016: Health & Social Care: Duties to non-UK nationals 29 Sep 2016: Legislating for Brexit 22 Feb 2016: Commissioning decisions, limited resources, ECHR rights and best interests 14 Jul 2015: Challenges to screening decisions – a review of the recent case law presentation 14 Jul 2015: Challenges to screening decisions – a review of the recent case law 4 Jun 2015: Social Security and Human Rights 4 Jun 2015: Social Security and Human Rights – Slides 13 Mar 2015: EIA screening: themes from the recent case law 24 Feb 2015: Care Act 2014: Safeguarding Provisions 10 Feb 2015: Duties of Candour 1 Apr 2014: The HS2 Hybrid Bill: Preparing evidence and presenting the case 1 Aug 2012: Plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose? Lessons on Planning Reform from the Dobry Review of Development Control [2012] JPL 899
Zoë's Privacy Notice

Zoë is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy. In order to provide legal services to her clients, including advice and representation services, Zoë needs to collect and hold personal data. This includes her client’s personal data and the personal data of others who feature in the matter upon which she is instructed. To read Zoë’s privacy notice in full, please see here.


DIRECTORY RECOMMENDATIONS

"Well on her way to silk. Really excellent and very approachable."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Administrative & Public Law

"Her written work is exceptional and she’s very switched on.” “She is clear and thoughtful in the way she presents her arguments."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Civil Liberties & Human Rights

"She cuts straight to the point very easily and is a precise and economical lawyer – she doesn’t waste time.” “Excellent communication skills and analytical abilities.” “She’s down to earth and highly approachable, and has excellent public law knowledge. She’s also an impressive advocate and is very robust when she needs to be, delivering great results for her clients."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Community Care

"She’s brilliant.” “She has a very good legal mind."

Chambers & Partners 2021, Environment

"She’s a creative, knowledgeable and very reliable barrister, and is a real pleasure to work with.” “Absolutely outstanding. She’s incredibly intelligent, dedicated and hard-working. She’s very patient and approachable with clients, and highly effective at dismantling her opponents’ case."

Chambers & Partners 2020, Administrative & Public Law

"She’s extremely responsive, proactive and very good to work with. Her written work is of the highest quality."

Chambers & Partners 2020, Community Care

"An extremely personable and approachable barrister who is very knowledgeable on the law. She is both intelligent and strategic.” “Very persistent in a measured way when on her feet” and “a great legal analyst."

Chambers & Partners 2019, Administrative & Public Law

"She is intelligent as well as calm, and very user-friendly."

Chambers & Partners 2019, Civil Liberties & Human Rights

"A superstar who does an impressive mix of significant work for claimants as well as for central government.” “She’s very pleasant and modest, which can lull the opposition into a false sense of security, but she’s always well prepared and very bright and makes really good arguments."

Chambers & Partners 2019, Community Care

"Extremely hard-working and dedicated advocate who really does her absolute best for clients. She combines real intellectual strength with a very attractive presentation style in court.” “She works hard to master the detail on a case and gives good, practical advice."

Chambers & Partners 2018, Administrative & Public Law

"Her submissions are impressive; she is articulate, fights her corner in a fair way, and has the right touch.” “Zoe is totally committed and puts in a huge amount of time and effort."

Chambers & Partners 2018, Civil Liberties & Human Rights

"She is a very creative and tenacious lawyer, who’s particularly good at cutting to the chase and getting good results."

Chambers & Partners 2018, Community Care

"Total dedication to the cases she is involved in. Her attention to detail and grasp of the issues is hugely impressive.” She is “extremely clear, concise and accurate on paper and in oral advocacy. A very warm and engaging advocate.” “A very good lawyer but she also understands the social policy, which is very important."

Chambers & Partners 2017, Administrative & Public Law

"Routinely instructed in high-profile matters in the human rights field, she displays a particular flair for environmental, planning, immigration and social security law… “She always sees both sides of the argument, and has a really strong knowledge of the legislation.” “She shows total dedication to her cases and clients."

Chambers & Partners 2017, Civil Liberties & Human Rights

"Incredibly thorough and very intelligent."

Legal 500 2017, Administrative & Public Law

"She is great at wading through complex issues and condensing into salient points."

Legal 500 2017, Planning

"Recommended for matters with EU or human rights elements."

Legal 500 2016, Planning

"Highly impressive in the High Court and completely on top of her subject."

Legal 500 2015, Planning

"A very skilful advocate who can make the best of a difficult case."

Legal 500 2015, Administrative & Public Law