Welcome to the Chambers of Barrister, Simon McKay : pursuing excellence in covert investigatory powers law and practice.

Barrister Simon McKay is a civil liberties and human rights law practitioner whose key area of specialism is national security law including terrorism and covert policing law, police powers, information, media and technology law — particularly where they intersect with public law, serious crime, regulatory and disciplinary cases.

Simon is a member of the Bar of England, Wales and Northern Ireland. His name is synonymous with covert investigatory powers law. He is the author of the leading textbooks on the subject and has written and co-written numerous book chapters and articles on the range of covert investigatory powers available to the State.

He has vast experience of dealing with the most serious criminal cases at trial and on appeal including appearing in the Court Martial and the Court Martial Appeal Court, He has also conducted numerous complex inquests and has advised and appeared in public inquiries.


His civil work encompasses complex judicial review and actions against and, in some cases for, the state, police and other public authorities as well as media and technology law matters, usually where there is some cross over with the exercise of state powers.


He has appeared extensively in regulatory and disciplinary proceedings, in particular sports disciplinary matters, having prosecuted serious sexual misconduct cases for a range of national sports bodies.


Simon frequently appears against some of the country’s leading KCs and is happy to accept leading briefs and instructions in appropriate cases

If you are thinking of instructing Simon, the following pages will give you some background to his work, including details of recent and reported cases, his seminars and publications.



Before moving across to the Bar , Simon had exercised higher rights including before the Supreme Court in a key justice case…


Recent examples of Simon’s work includes: Re A Child resisted application by third party for disclosure of sensitive police intelligence…


Simon’s publications include Blackstones’ Guide to the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (OUP) Covert Policing Law & Practice …


Simon McKay has lectured extensively in the UK and internationally on national security, terrorism, surveillance-related law

Recent Posts From Simon’s Blog on Covert Policing

Test purchases and knife-crime

Introduction On 31 January 2019, the Home Secretary announcedhis plan to introduce a further category of civil preventative order. Liberty describes the proliferation of these orders as a trend that “dangerously blurs the divide between the criminal and civil law”....

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