Sam Kharabanda Groom is a probationary tenant at Cornerstone Barristers. He completed pupillage at Cornerstone under the supervision of Dr Ashley Bowes, Matthew Feldman, Sarah Salmon, Edward Grant and Emmaline Lambert. He welcomes instructions in all of Cornerstone’s practice areas, including planning, environmental, housing, information, licensing and property law. He has a particular interest in all aspects of the law relating to animals.
Before pupillage, Sam obtained a first-class LLM from the University of Cambridge, and he worked as the judicial assistant to Lord Justice Bean, as a volunteer with Liberty’s Advice and Information service, and as a research assistant in constitutional law and animal rights law.
Sam accepts pro bono instructions in appropriate cases, having taken part in Advocate’s Pupil Pledge during his pupillage.
As the judicial assistant to Lord Justice Bean in the Court of Appeal, Sam worked on a wide range of civil and criminal cases. These included:
- Judicial reviews in the context of investigatory powers and law enforcement ( EWHC 27 (Admin), ( EWHC 272 (Admin),  EWHC 710 (Admin))
- Appeals concerning Part VII of the Housing Act 1996 ( EWCA Civ 1586,  EWCA Civ 1587) and the interpretation of service charge covenants ( EWCA Civ 431);
- Appeals concerning challenges to the London Streetspace Plan ( EWCA Civ 1197) and to the classification of a footpath as a bridleway ( EWCA Civ 1098);
- An appeal concerning Part III of the Data Protection Act 2018 ( EWCA Civ 42);
- The quashing of subpostmasters’ convictions in the Post Office scandal ( EWCA Crim 577).
As a volunteer with Liberty, Sam wrote responses to queries from members of the public concerning their rights. These involved police powers and duties, equality rights against employers and public authorities, and the interception of emails by public authorities.
As a research assistant at the Cambridge Centre for Animal Rights Law, Sam contributed to the world’s first textbook about animal rights law, which has just been published. As a research assistant to Dr Raffael Fasel, Sam mainly worked on the intellectual history of constituant power.
- Planning and Environment
During pupillage, Sam assisted members of chambers with the full range of planning work. His experience included:
- The test case concerning section 106 contributions sought by an NHS Trust ( EWHC 263 (Admin));
- The test case, in the context of nutrient neutrality, concerning whether Appropriate Assessment is required at the stage of discharging planning conditions on a reserved matters approval ( EWHC 1622 (Admin));
- The judicial review of the decision to grant development consent in respect of the Sizewell C nuclear power station ( EWHC 1526 (Admin));
- Planning appeals (inquiry and hearing format) concerning residential development, including tall buildings, on greenfield and brownfield sites, involving Green Belt, AONB, LOS, landscape, design and heritage issues;
- High Court challenges to the adoption of a local plan and to grants of planning permission;
- The progress of a draft local plan at regulation 19 stage;
- Advice on applications for planning permission and for certificates of lawful development.
Sam has been instructed in planning enforcement prosecutions dealing with both conviction and sentencing.
Sam Kharabanda Groom is interested in all aspects of the law relating to the natural environment, and in particular the law relating to animals.
Sam’s experience of the law relating to animals includes:
- Working as a research assistant at the Cambridge Centre for Animal Rights Law, helping to write the world’s first textbook on animal rights law, which involved researching historical and present-day case-law and statute law concerning animals from around the world;
- Researching the applicability of UK constitutional principles to animals in his LLM thesis;
- Writing articles for the UK Journal of Animal Law and the City Law Review;
- Starting and running the Cecilia Moot, the UK’s first mooting competition about animal law, for two years, and working as the UK Centre for Animal Law’s student co-ordinator.
During pupillage, Sam assisted members of chambers with a wide range of housing and property work. His experience included:
- Appeals under section 204 of the Housing Act 1996;
- Statutory nuisance claims under section 82 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990;
- Possession claims on numerous grounds;
- A claim for damages under the Equality Act 2010 in relation to regeneration works;
- A claim for private nuisance in relation to subsidence damage caused by tree roots.
Sam has been instructed in disrepair, statutory nuisance, licensing, possession and injunction proceedings, including drafting grounds of appeal in respect of which permission to appeal has been granted.
As a judicial assistant, Sam worked on appeals concerning Part VII of the Housing Act 1996 ( EWCA Civ 1586,  EWCA Civ 1587) and the interpretation of service charge covenants ( EWCA Civ 431).
- Information Law
Sam Kharabanda Groom is keen to build on his experience of data protection and other areas of information law.
During pupillage, Sam assisted a member of chambers with a prospective appeal to the Court of Appeal relating to a claim for damages under data protection law and misuse of private information.
During his LLM, Sam studied the data protection regime in detail, taught by Professor David Erdos, as well as the torts of breach of confidence, misuse of private information and defamation.
As a judicial assistant, Sam worked on a number of cases involving the use of information by public authorities.
- In R (Private International) v Investigatory Powers Tribunal  EWHC 27 (Admin), the court examined the Home Secretary’s practice of issuing thematic CNE warrants to the intelligence agencies.
- In R (QSA) v National Police Chiefs’ Council  EWHC 272 (Admin), the court considered a claim for the deletion of historic conviction records from the PNC, whose retention allegedly violated the claimants’ rights under Article 8 ECHR.
- In R (Kind) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWHC 710 (Admin), the court reviewed (on rationality, procedural fairness, and human rights grounds) the decision to refuse the application for DV clearance by the appointee to the role of Head of Investigations at IPCO.
- In M v Chief Constable of Sussex Police  EWCA Civ 42, the court considered the compliance with Part III of the Data Protection Act 2018 of the of data-sharing by the police force with a crime reduction partnership.
While volunteering for Liberty, Sam drafted advice for a member of the public about the law relating to the interception of communications.
Sam Kharabanda Groom accepts instructions in licensing matters, having appeared in the Magistrates Court, the Crown Court and the First-tier Tribunal in proceedings relating to housing and taxi licensing.