Boris Johnson has moved to enoble a high-flying commercial barrister to fill a gap in the ministerial ranks in the House of Lords. David Wolfson QC has been appointed as parliamentary under secretary of state at the Ministry of Justice, the prime minister’s office announced. Wolfson will sit in the Lords as a life peer, but did not appear in the 2020 list of political peerages published yesterday. 

He will not be entitled to speak, vote or take part in legislative functions in the Lords until formally introduced to the house.  

The MoJ has been without a spokesperson in the upper house since September when long-serving justice minister Lord Keen of Elie resigned over the UK Internal Market Bill. At the time, Wolfson wrote in the Spectator magazine that he did not regard the government’s approach to the measure as a breach in the rule of law. ’Whether it is wise or unwise is a different question,’ he concluded. 

Cambridge-educated Wolfson was called to the bar in 1992 and is a member of One Essex Court, where he specialises in complex and high value disputes.