020 7650 1200

Carolin Ott

Senior associate solicitor

Carolin Ott is a senior associate solicitor in the human rights department.

Human rights Judicial review

Carolin is a senior associate solicitor in the human rights department, working with Tessa Gregory.

Carolin is a dual qualified lawyer, admitted as a solicitor in England & Wales and as an attorney to the New York State Bar. She has experience working on domestic and international human rights law cases.

What the directories say

Carolin is outstandingly efficient and helpful.

Chambers and partners 2024

Legal expertise

Her work currently focuses on judicial review challenges and claims under the Human Rights Act 1998, with a particular emphasis on discrimination. Her cases include a broad range of challenges to public bodies, including in the context of social welfare, immigration and national security.

Prior to joining Leigh Day, Carolin worked in the public law department of a large legal aid firm, where she worked primarily on asylum and human rights claims in an immigration context, acting frequently for vulnerable individuals including victims of human trafficking. She also worked for the Law Centres Network as an immigration advisor.

Carolin graduated from the London School of Economics with a first class degree in Law. Following her undergraduate degree she worked for the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia on the trial of Serbian war criminal Ratko Mladic. She subsequently completed a Master of Laws at Harvard Law School.

Carolin has worked with a number of humanitarian organisations including PAX and the Public International Law Policy Group researching and advising on breaches of human rights and humanitarian law in the context of armed conflict as part of her work for the Harvard Law School International Human Rights Clinic. She has also been involved in researching and writing on both public international law and public law issues, including as a Research Assistant to Harvard Professor Alex Whiting and Professors Maurice Sunkin and Andrew Le Sueur, as well as on the Executive Board of the Harvard International Law Journal. In the past she has worked on issues concerning children’s rights in particular in the context of UN Treaty Bodies in her role at the Child Rights International Network.

Significant cases she has worked on include:

  • R (SXC & ors) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions – the Court of Appeal unanimously found for our clients holding that the Secretary of State’s implementation of Universal Credit and failure to provide adequate transitional protection to severely disabled claimants was unlawful.
  • RR (AP) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions – a successful appeal to the Supreme Court on behalf of RR relating to the application of the bedroom tax in which the Supreme Court confirmed that social welfare tribunals and local authorities have the power and duty to dis-apply regulations where applying them would result in a breach of human rights.
  • Rights Watch (UK) v Secretary of State for the Home Department – a challenge to the appointment of Lord Carlile of Berriew as independent reviewer of the controversial Prevent strategy and the terms of reference set for the review brought on behalf of Rights Watch (UK). The Home Secretary conceded the case, withdrew the appointment of Lord Carlile and reconsidered the terms of reference for the review.
  • R (Nichola Salvato) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions – representing a single mother challenging the rule requiring proof of payment from working parents before they can receive childcare costs support through UC, which put families in hardship and debt. The High Court held that the rule was discriminatory and irrational, and found that it had disproportionately prejudicial effects on women.
  • R (Coughlan) v Minister for the Cabinet Office - representing Essex resident Neil Coughlan in his ongoing challenge that tests the legality of the government’s intention to run pilots in local elections, as part of a broader plan to introduce a requirement to show identification to vote.
  • Representing John’s Campaign and others in relation to unlawful refusals to allow visiting in care homes in circumstances where the suspension of visits has had and continues to have a catastrophic effect on residents, particularly those with dementia. Shortly after John’s Campaign issued judicial proceedings challenging the Department for Health and Social Care’s Guidance imposing blanket bans on visits to care homes on the basis that it misstated the law and created an unacceptable risk of illegality by not reflecting the legal requirements for individualised risk assessments, the Department for Health and Social Care revised its Guidance on care home visits.

See Carolin as Lawyer of the Week in The Times, Thursday February 4 2021.


News and blogs

News Article
High Court
Human rights Arms sales High court

Oxfam wins permission to formally intervene in legal challenge to UK arms sales to Israel

Oxfam has been given permission to formally intervene in a legal challenge to the Government’s continuing approval of arms sales to Israel.

News Article
Home Office
Asylum Aid Asylum Human rights Rwanda

Asylum Aid files judicial review claim challenging the Home Office’s Rwanda policy

Asylum Aid has filed a claim in the High Court challenging the Home Office’s ‘Safety of Rwanda’ guidance.

News Article
Carer With Elderly Woman
Human rights Social care Covid-19

John’s Campaign, Care Rights UK and Patients Association are Core Participants at Care Sector module of Covid Inquiry

John’s Campaign, Care Rights UK and the Patients Association will be represented as Core Participants as the Covid Inquiry investigates the impact of the pandemic on the adult social care sector across the UK. 

News Article
Cameron Mitchell (1)
Human rights Judicial review benefits Personal Independence Payment

Severely disabled man challenges halt to Personal Independence Benefit payments after 28 days in hospital

A severely disabled man is challenging a rule which halted payment of his welfare benefit after he had been in hospital for more than four weeks.

News Article
Nichola Salvato
Human rights Universal Credit

Working mum wins claim challenging rule for Universal Credit parents to pay childcare costs upfront

Single mum Nichola Salvato has won her legal case regarding the requirement to provide proof of payment to obtain Universal Credit childcare payments.

News Article
Supreme Court pale

Man wins Supreme Court bedroom tax case

The Supreme Court has today ruled in favour of a man, known as RR, who brought a legal case regarding whether social security tribunals and local authorities have the power to provide effective remedy to benefits claimants where the application of the bedroom tax breaches their rights under the Human Rights Act.