Adam is a specialist in defamation, privacy, breach of confidence, harassment and all other areas of media and information law.
His recent work includes successfully defending HRH Juan Carlos of Spain, in a harassment claim brought against the former king for £126m, and acting for the successful defendant in Johnny Depp’s libel action against The Sun.
He acted for the successful respondent in Stoute v NGN, the 2023 Court of Appeal privacy case concerning photographs taken by paparazzi on a public beach. He currently represents the defendant in Sir James Dyson v Channel 4, which was one of Spears Magazine’s four ‘blockbuster reputation cases of 2022’.
In 2022 Adam represented the BBC in the case brought by the Attorney General to injunct the disclosure of the identity of an MI5 covert human intelligence source. He also acted for News Group Newspapers on applications for disclosure of documents and journalists’ sources in Rebekah Vardy v Coleen Rooney – the ‘Wagatha Christie’ case.
He has been instructed in a number of recent cases involving alleged undercover surveillance activities, including Neil Gerrard v ENRC and Matthew Earl v Kroll.
Adam represented Sir Elton John’s ex-wife Renate Blauel in her claim against the singer for breach of contractual privacy. He was also instructed in Sir Cliff Richard v BBC (privacy), Tariq Khuja v Times Newspapers (reporting restrictions) and Andrew Mitchell MP v NGN (the ‘plebgate’ libel claim). He acted for the successful appellant in the 2021 Court of Appeal case concerning the lis pendens provisions of the Lugano Convention, Wright v Granath.
Adam is shortlisted for the 2023 Chambers and Partners ‘Silk of the Year’ award in the defamation and privacy category. He was named as one of just 17 practising barristers in The Lawyer magazine’s Hot 100 list for 2021. The magazine said of Adam that “in this particularly fierce corner of the disputes Market” he “has marked himself out as one of the leading minds at the Bar”.
He is highly ranked in the Chambers and Partners and Legal 500 directories. The latter described him in 2020 as “The best of the new libel KCs around, brilliant in written submissions and strategic advice.”, and in 2021 said of him “He has a fantastic breadth of media law expertise and well as experience.” It added that “his knowledge of the media law is second-to-none and his easy and listening manner is a winner for clients”. In 2022-3 Legal 500 said of Adam “He is compellingly charming, which obviously works well with everyone: lay clients, instructing solicitors, and judges”. The 2023-4 edition says ‘Adam has extremely good judgement and is very practical. Clients trust him entirely. His advocacy is straightforward and focused”.
Chambers and Partners 2022-3 says that Adam is “terrific to work with, insightful, responsive and drafts clearly’. It said previously that he is “a calm and authoritative advocate who is very good under pressure” and “has such a knowledge of the law and applies it practically”.
Prior to taking silk Adam was the 2017-18 Chambers and Partners ‘Junior of the Year’ in the privacy and defamation category. He also won the award in 2011- 2012 and was shortlisted in 2008-9.
He has an expertise in privacy and confidentiality issues arising in legal proceedings, particularly in family disputes. Legal 500 noted in its 2022-3 edition that Adam “has particular expertise in reporting restrictions, and principles of open justice”. He has appeared and advised in many of the main cases in this field, including in the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.
Adam has for many years written and given lectures and training on media issues to specialist practitioners and judges. He is co-author of The Family Courts: Media Access and Reporting, published by the Family Division of the High Court, the Judicial College and the Society of Editors. Adam is a co-author of The Law of Privacy and the Media (OUP). He is also an Associate Fellow at the Centre for Law, Society and Popular Culture at the University of Westminster.