Who? Mike Pemberton, 38, public law and human rights partner at national firm Stephensons.
Why is he in the news? Acted in the Supreme Court for ‘T’, where the government was appealing a 2013 Court of Appeal ruling that, when someone was applying for a job, the obligatory disclosure of minor offences irrelevant to that job could not be justified in law.
‘T’ is a young adult who accepted a police warning as an 11-year-old after being accused of stealing a bicycle. He has subsequently been obliged to disclose that caution to prospective employers every time that he applied for a job, with probable detriment to his career.
The Supreme Court earlier this month upheld the CoA’s findings, ruling that disclosure of the warning breached the young adult’s right to privacy and family life under article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. ‘T’ may now apply for jobs without disclosing the alleged offence committed when he was 11.
Thoughts on the case: ‘It defies common sense that a minor caution at the age of 11 should have to be disclosed on every application. The CoA took a rational approach in January 2013 and concluded that disclosure of minor issues that were in no way relevant to positions being applied for could not be justified.’
Why become a lawyer? ‘The RAF was cutting back on fighter pilots as the Cold War drew to a close and so I opted for the law instead.’
Career high: ‘Acting in cases that helped change the law, such as the 2011 Supreme Court ruling that denying the right of appeal to offenders on the Sex Offenders Register was incompatible with their human rights.’
Career low: ‘Seeing entire swathes of legal aid abolished.’