Michael Mylonas QC

Call 1988 | Silk 2012

Michael Mylonas QC | Call 1988 | Silk 2012

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Overview

Head of the Court of Protection team and a vastly experienced silk, Michael is applauded for the breadth of his medical law practice. He is regularly sought after to lead high-profile, high-value cases and has a particular interest in cross border issues. Michael was awarded Barrister of the Year at the Lawyer Awards in June 2019.  He also won the Lexis Nexis Legal Personality Award this year for his work on “groundbreaking legal issues concerning consent to medical treatment“. He was one of a handful of barristers included in this year’s Hot 100 for his success in “securing legal firsts in exciting new areas of law”.

Michael is clerked primarily by Lee Johnson, Clare Sabido and Natasha Southgate.

“I should add by way of Post Script my thanks to Mr Mylonas. His presentation of this case has been assiduously fair and balanced throughout.His cross-examination of the father was skilful, sensitive and kind. The father paid a similar tribute at the conclusion of the case which I observed at the time and take this opportunity to reiterate, says a great deal about both of them”.
Hayden J, final paragraph of judgment in Alfie Evans proceedings (in which Michael represented the hospital).

 

Michael leads the Serjeants’ Inn Chambers Court of Protection team. He has a broad healthcare and private client practice and is often instructed in cases concerning the Court’s jurisdiction to safeguard the interests of those who lack capacity.  He frequently advises both domestic and international clients on Court of Protection remedies and strategies and has appeared in many of the leading cases concerning medical treatment, assisted dying, euthanasia and fertility treatment.  He is highly sought after by clients seeking advice in this area and the overlap with family and probate work.

Ranked in Band 1 for Court of Protection work by both legal directories, he is also ranked as a leader in the field for Clinical Negligence and Professional Discipline and Regulatory law.  The Lawyer notes his work in “a series of ground-breaking cases at the intersection of biology, ethics and law, often pushing regulatory boundaries and shaping the public debate”.

He is regarded as a shrewd tactician and for his commitment to reaching the right result.

Cases and work of note

Michael led the team representing Alder Hey Children’s Hospital during the Alfie Evans case.

This tragic and highly sensitive case concerned the decision to withdraw life support from an infant with a severe neuro-degenerative disorder. It comprised more than eight contested High Court hearings over a two-month period as well as four unsuccessful appeals by the parents to the Court of Appeal and two applications each to the Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights.

Ultimately the High Court’s ruling that continuing life-support treatment would not be in Alfie’s best interests was upheld.

In August 2018, Michael secured a ground-breaking decision in Y v A Healthcare NHS Trust when the Court of Protection allowed the emergency extraction of sperm for fertility treatment from a man who had suffered a catastrophic brain injury. There was no written consent for the extraction and this result was achieved through an innovative application of the Mental Capacity Act, which allowed a named individual to sign a consent form for fertility treatment on his behalf.

In December Michael received Judgment from the Court of Appeal in ARB v IVF Hammersmithwhere a father is challenging the public policy bar to recovery of damages for wrongful birth of a healthy child. The case is being appealed to the Supreme Court.

Last year, Michael advised in JMA where the Court of Protection decided it was in JMA’s best interests to vary her will and award gifts totalling £7million.  This is believed to be the largest gift ever approved by the Court of Protection.

Michael is also acting pro bono in the case of a transgender man who, having given birth, is seeking to be identified as the child’s “father” or “parent” on the birth certificate.

In An NHS Trust v Ms X, Michael appeared before Cobb J, who granted a declaration that it should be lawful not to forcibly treat an anorexic patient, despite the inevitability that death would follow.

Other work of note includes:

Recommendations

Michael is consistently ranked as a leading silk in the directories for Clinical Negligence, Court of Protection and Professional Discipline.

Most recently Chambers & Partners notes “his craft of medical law is just unbelievable. He has an absolute knack of getting on top of the cases within an alarmingly small space of time. He really gets the confidence of the people we are working with, and is very charming with clients and family members. Superb on his feet, his delivery and advocacy is absolutely fantastic.”  

Other editorial from the directories includes:

  • a first-class lawyer and an exceptional advocate;
  • loved by clients;
  • a vastly experienced silk;
  • he has razor-sharp intellect enabling him to think quickly in stressful circumstances;
  • a powerful and formidable court advocate;
  • he’s somebody who is utterly confident and inspires belief in solicitors and clients;
  • he has exquisite judgement;
  • he’s very eloquent in court and is the voice of reason and calm outside court;
  • takes a direct, proactive approach;
  • conducts cases in a very charming but persuasive way;
  • draws particular praise for his work handling medical treatment and welfare cases;
  • a very experienced advocate;
  • his knowledge is second to none;
  • known for his sensitive and pragmatic handling of medical cases;
  • regularly sought after to lead high-profile, high-value cases;
  • applauded for the breadth of his practice;
  • always aware of the key issues in a case;
  • a safe pair of hands;
  • his straightforward and pragmatic approach is welcomed by both solicitors and clients;
  • a highly effective advocate all round;
  • he has the unique skill of being able to robustly present the case whilst also showing great empathy and compassion;
  • extensive experience of professional discipline work;
  • his ability to grasp the issues and manage the different threads of a case is a strength few counsel have;
  • Michael is a brilliant advocate;
  • has an extraordinary way with clients – he makes them feel at ease whilst instilling absolute confidence in his abilities;
  • his preparation is meticulous and he gets fantastic results for clients;
  • he’s extremely good on his feet;
  • his advocacy is eloquent;
  • meticulous, clearly experienced, user-friendly and skilled at navigating papers;
  • his commitment to a case is unwavering;
  • his advocacy skills are among the best at the Bar;
  • his grasp of medical work is second to none;
  • he gains the confidence of doctors completely;
  • he’s a fantastic advocate and great all round;
  • he fights at the right time but knows how to position the case to achieve a settlement when that’s what we need;
  • continues to impress and be in demand;
  • meticulous when it comes to preparation;
  • tenacious in court;
  • he remains a very skilled and intelligent advocate;
  • fantastic client relationship skills;
  • a quiet, calm, very effective case runner;
  • great for those tricky cases where the law is uncertain;
  • detailed and meticulous preparation;
  • he has a canny skill in reading disciplinary panels;
  • valued for his hands-on approach to cases;
  • very diligent, elegant and well-prepared advocate;
  • superb client management skills;
  • heavyweight junior for a big case;
  • has a great head for details;
  • very patient and understanding with clients;
  • a brilliant brain and is therefore great on difficult, tactical cases;
  • so good on his feet;
  • never daunted by a fight;
  • shows complete understanding and compassion to clients;
  • always the first choice where you have a case which is dominated by complicated medicine;
  • astonished by the quality of his work and his capacity to grasp incredibly complex issues at short notice;
  • intellectually very able;
  • impressive at marshalling arguments which he puts across in an appropriate and helpful manner;
  • always gets to the heart of the matter;
  • a sharp mind;
  • a tiger in court;
  • very strong on the medicine, a fact that helps him to root out issues for cross-examination purposes;
  • fantastic trial advocate;
  • a leader in the field of medical ethics and treatment law; and
  • stunning hard work, technical knowledge and outstanding ability to out-think opponents.

Publications

Michael co-authored the most recent edition of Medical Treatment: Decisions and the Law (2016) and contributed to APIL’s Clinical Negligence text. Between 2000 and 2009 he was a contributing editor to the Medical Law Reports.

He lectures extensively on a wide range of subjects including corporate manslaughter, confidentiality, fatal accident claims, ethical and medical treatment decisions, special damages, causation, inquests and limitation.

As a junior barrister he was a guest speaker at the International Bar Association’s conferences in both Buenos Aires and Strasbourg. He has been featured as the Times’ Lawyer of the Week (click here to read the article).

Privacy

Michael adopts and adheres to the provisions of the privacy notice which can be accessed here.

further information

For further details of Michael’s practice please click on the links to the left or contact a member of the clerking or client service team.

Bar Council Membership No: 22824
Registered Name: Michael John Mylonas
VAT Registration No: 524206480