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Tom Short

Senior associate solicitor

Tom Short is a senior associate solicitor in the human rights department.

Climate change Corporate accountability Environment Human rights Judicial review Planning Wildlife

Tom Short is a senior associate solicitor in the human rights department. Tom specialises in cases relating to environmental damage and human rights abuses involving UK-based multinational corporations.

What the directories say

Tom never seems to tire, despite the number and range of cases he is involved in.

Chambers and partners 2024

Legal expertise

Tom trained at Allen & Overy LLP and qualified into the firm’s Environmental & Regulatory Law group. He worked as an associate in the firm’s London and New York offices on a range of corporate environmental and human rights-related matters, advising on issues such as contaminated land liability, environmental import-export issues, climate change & EU ETS, bribery and sanctions, Equator Principles and environmental information. Tom then worked in Kenya with Peace Brigades International setting up a new Human Rights Defenders project before moving to Malawi where he was a Legal Fellow of Reprieve. Supervised by Professor Sandra Babcock of Cornell University Tom worked on a large-scale capital mitigation investigation and re-sentencing project. Tom is co-author of a mitigation investigation guide produced in conjunction with the Malawi Human Rights Commission. Directly prior to joining Leigh Day, Tom worked as a public law solicitor at Bates, Wells & Braithwaite.

Tom joined Leigh Day to work on the UK first’s successful High Court case against a British company in relation to modern slaveryGaldikas v DJ Houghton [2016]. The case was settled in favour of our clients in 2016. 

Tom works primarily on international cases with an environmental aspect. He is currently investigating a potential claim in Brazil. 

Before converting to law, Tom studied Philosophy and German at University College London, graduating with a first class honours degree and going on to studying for a master’s degree in Philosophy at Oxford University where he was a St Anne’s Graduates Ethics Scholar and funded by the Arts Humanities Research Council.

Tom in the news

Tom has recently spoken on environmental issues and corporate accountability at:

  • HOMA, V International Seminar on Human Rights & Business, Juiz de For a, Brazil, September 2018
  • Public Interest Environmental Law (PIEL), Environmental Litigation: Has the Green Revolution Reached the Courts?, London, April 2018
  • Warwick University’s Centre for Law, Regulation & Governance of the Global Economy (GLOBE), Climate Change Law, Litigation and Governance, Warwick, February 2018.

What the directories say

He is excellent at getting into the necessary detail of tricky environmental cases.

Chambers and partners 2024


News Article
Blind justice
Human rights Asylum Diego Garcia

Asylum seekers can leave guarded encampment on Diego Garcia

A group of asylum seekers who have been stranded on Diego Garcia since October 2021 have today been granted bail allowing them to leave the fenced and guarded encampment in which they have held by the BIOT Commissioner since their arrival two and a half years ago.

News Article
Biomass Wood Pellets

Biofuelwatch launches legal investigation of Drax eligibility for renewables subsidies

Environmental campaign group Biofuelwatch has called for a full investigation into Drax Group's receipt of government subsidies after serious concerns were raised about its sourcing of wood used for biomass to generate so-called ”renewable energy” in its UK power station.

News Article
British Museum
British Museum Freedom of information human rights

Freedom of Information request submitted to British Museum for information on sacred Tabots

A Freedom of Information request has been submitted to the British Museum for information about 11 sacred Tabots, which many argue should be returned to their home in Ethiopia. 

Blog Post
Aeroplane Descending
Human rights International Carbon emissions Air pollution

KLM Judgment: The intensifying scrutiny of corporate greenwashing across Europe

Anthony Hayward, Joe Snape and Tom Short discuss the KLM (Koninklijke Luchtvaart Maatschappij) judgment and the impact on other corporations greenwashing across Europe

News Article
Royal Courts Of Justice
International Asylum Legal Aid

Asylum seekers stranded on Diego Garcia win challenge against return to Sri Lanka

Sri Lankan asylum seekers have won their fight not to be forcibly returned to Sri Lanka in a Government climbdown just days before they were due to challenge the decision in the Supreme Court of the British Indian Ocean Territories (BIOT).

News Article
Foreign Office
Refugees Human rights

Sri Lankan families detained in British Indian Ocean Territory in despair over hopes of international protection

Members of a group of 89 Sri Lankan adults and children who have been detained for over seven months on a military base more than 1,500 miles from the mainland in the middle of the Indian Ocean have gone on hunger strike in a desperate plea for help over their isolation.