Berwin Leighton turns to EU law to fight quarantine system

City firm Berwin Leighton is using EU law in an attempt to overthrow the UK's 100-year-old animal quarantine system.

It is representing the Quarantine Abolition Fighting Fund in a case that hinges on whether the UK Government's failure to implement a vaccination-based passport system for pets is illegal. The parties are still awaiting judgment.

Berwin Leighton's team consists of senior assistant Jonathan Aubrey, commercial and public law specialist barrister Matthew Shankland and trainee Ilana Bernsiten. The Government is represented by the Treasury Devil, Phillip Sales QC.

Shankland says the case indicates that UK lawyers must now become experts in EU law.

He says: “This case is a direct challenge to domestic law based on European provisions. Cases like these are exploding into a massive area of practice.

“Lawyers must be prepared to turn their hands to any area of judicial review. It runs from cases like this to commercial law.”