4 New Square defeats race discrimination case

Dr Aisha Bijlani, a member of the set, argued that because of race discrimination in the clerking room she earned £7m less than her colleagues during her 16 years with the set, claiming that her loss of future earning was in excess of £26m.

The Employment Tribunal rejected 16 claims made by Bijlani against former head of chambers Roger Stewart QC, senior clerk Lizzie Wiseman and silks Justin Fenwick QC and John Powell QC.

It was alleged that the set’s management had failed to properly deal with complaints of a racist culture and had conspired against the claimant after she raised concerns about the amount of work she received as a junior.

Bijlani alleged that she was discriminated against by a culture of racism that was allowed to exist in the clerks room.

The tribunal dismissed a series of allegations including the suggestion that clerks had failed to collect fees on her behalf, that management failed to provide equal opportunity training for the clerks and that the set failed to investigate complaints made by the claimant.

In a statement, 4 New Square said: “We believe the judgment to be fair and right but don’t wish to make any other public statement.”