Sarah Collier

Public Law Senior Associate Solicitor

Sarah Collier is an exceptional person. Her professionalism, in terms of her confidence, dedication and efficiency in preparing my case helped me to know and feel that I was in safe hands. Sarah showed empathy towards me as my situation regarding my health was highly sensitive. I was always kept informed and updated and she always ensured attention to details. I was always given the assurance that I could contact her via email/phone (if needed) when she was on annual leave or she would go out of her way to call me (on weekends) to make sure that I was okay; as the case was extremely difficult and emotionally draining at times with it's twists and turns. Sarah provided the intellectual insight and rationale that enabled me to make sound decisions when moving forward. Eventually, I was able to determine and identify the factors and circumstances that had systematically prevailed to impede the development of my mental health and take appropriate action(s) to rectify the situation. Thank you Sarah for your sincerity. compassion and unwavering commitment to secure justice for me. I admire your strength, tenacity and fortitude in this matter. I would definitely recommend your services.Naamah-Shalomit Shayahlah

Career

Sarah joined Simpson Millar in 2017 and has more than eight years’ experience in the legal profession.

As a member of our Public Law team, she works across a range of areas, with the bulk of her practice being judicial review and associated claims under the Human Rights Act 1998.

Sarah specialises in bringing challenges against central and local government on behalf of vulnerable individuals, and she has a particular interest in representing children and victims of trafficking. She regularly acts for young people who have been exploited by county lines gangs.  She has extensive experience in bringing judicial reviews challenging NRM trafficking decisions, unlawful detention, child refugee family reunion refusals, and local authority decisions to deny support or accommodation to children in need and care leavers.

In addition to public law challenges, Sarah advises in private law actions against public bodies for false imprisonment, personal injury, and Human Rights Act damages claims, many of which follow on from a successful judicial review claim.

Sarah received a BA degree in Philosophy and Theology from Oxford University in 2010, following which she studied Law at the University of Law, earning the LLB qualification in 2013. She then completed her training contract at Linklaters LLP, qualifying into their Litigation department in 2015. Before joining the Public Law team at Simpson Millar, she worked in the Housing department of the Mary Ward Legal Centre, mainly representing vulnerable clients in housing possession cases.

Sarah has carried out pro bono work for several organisations including Bail for Immigration Detainees, the Centre for Criminal Appeals, Amicus, and the Centre for Reproductive Rights.

Recent cases

HNH v Secretary of State for the Home Department; multiple cases 2020-2021

Sarah acted for HNH in several linked cases against SSHD, beginning with simultaneous judicial reviews of the decisions to (i) detain HNH in Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre in 2020; and (ii) find that HNH was not a victim of trafficking under the Modern Slavery Act 2015. Both cases were successful, and HNH was released from detention and formally recognised by SSHD as a victim of trafficking and modern slavery for the purpose of sexual and criminal exploitation. Sarah then brought a civil claim for damages for personal injury, false imprisonment and breaches of Articles 4 and 5 of the Human Rights Act 1998, ultimately securing a significant payment of damages from SSHD.

HN & MN v Secretary of State for the Home Department; JR/4719/2019

Sarah acted for the Applicants HN and MN on a successful judicial review challenge against SSHD. The Applicants were unaccompanied minors seeking to join family member in the UK under the family reunification provisions of EU Regulation 604/2013 (Dublin III). The judicial review was won,  and the court found that there had been a breach of the Applicants’ human rights under Article 8 ECHR.

OP v The London Borough of Lewisham; CO/1368/2019

Sarah acted for OP, a young victim of county lines criminal exploitation, against a local authority which was refusing to comply with its duties to him as a care leaver under the Children Act 1989. They succeeded in their judicial review claim, and OP was granted entitlement to the full range of care leaver duties, including accommodation and financial support.

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