Zia Bhaloo QC

Year of Call 1990
Year of Silk 2010

General Profile

Zia Bhaloo was called to the Bar in 1990 and was appointed Queen's Counsel in 2010. She was elected head of chambers in 2013, and chairman of the Property Bar Association in 2014. Zia is Chambers and Partners Real Estate Silk of the Year. At the outset of her practice Zia practised in all areas covered by chambers, including commercial chancery, property, insolvency, company, professional negligence, trusts and commercial disputes. Prior to taking silk her practice focussed largely on property. As well as maintaining her property expertise, she is increasingly instructed on commercial and commercial chancery matters, as well as areas outside her core areas, often with a specialist junior. She is well-known for property and landlord and tenant and commercial chancery. She has a wide range of experience in these areas, including property insolvency, valuation issues, dilapidations, business tenancies, rent review, telecoms, all issues arising out of development, easements, restrictive covenants, rights of light the interpretation of sale, finance, development and overage agreements, mines and minerals, service charges and social housing. She is often acts in cases which also include significant planning issues. She is recommended for her cross examination and has been recommended in both Chambers and Partners and Legal 500 for many years for commercial chancery, property litigation, and social housing. The research by those directories over many years emphasises the fact that she is a “commercially astute tactician”. Her focus and interest is on using the law, and strategy, to achieve results which achieve the client’s objectives, and which work on the ground.


She is the co-editor of Butterworths Property Insolvency and the Rural Law Notebook. She has a particular interest in valuation issues, which arise in a wide range of contexts in her practice, and is currently co-authoring  a book on valuation.


Detailed CVs in particular areas of practice can be provided.


Notable Cases


Acting for the First Respondent in the Supreme Court in Lynn Shellfish Ltd v Loose [2016] UKSC 14, which concerned the extent of an exclusive prescriptive right to take shellfish from a stretch of shore on the eastern side of the Wash.


Acting for an international telecoms service provider in arbitrations seeking the repayment of sums paid in connection with contracts for the installation of sub ducts and fibre optic cables which it is claimed were not in fact installed. This involves complex factual issues, restitution and an issue as to whether one of the projects is subject to the arbitration clause in an umbrella agreement.


Acting in a successful appeal against an arbitration award in a rent review.


Successfully resisting an appeal against an arbitration award in respect of the correct interpretation of a contract.


Acting in a multi million pound arbitration concerning the interpretation of a development finance agreement.


Appearing in the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) in relation to a discharge of restraint order obtained under the Proceeds of Crime Act and involving a Jersey trust.


Acting for the successful landlord in a claim by a tenant for damages for nuisance and breach of covenant. One of the main issues was the circumstances in which obligations should be implied in relation to property retained by a landlord (Gavin v One Housing Group [2013] EWCA 580).


Acting for the successful landlord in a claim for collective enfranchisement of units let on short terms lets. The main legal issue was the correct interpretation of certain provisions in the legislation (Smith v Jafton [2013] 2 E.G.L.R 204).


Acting for JC Decaux and Outdoor Plus at first instance and in the Court of Appeal in a claim for release fee damages arising out trespassing advertising hoardings (LB Enfield  v (1) Outdoor Plus Ltd (2) JC Decaux [2012] EWCA Civ 608). Acting for the Defendant in a claim for £12million on a release fee basis. The claim involves shared ownership leases, the effect and construction of planning obligations and allegations of sham. She has a particular interest in release fee damages, and frequently advises on them in different contexts, including in numerous restrictive covenant, trespass and right of light cases. She has also lectured on the topic.


Acting for the Rothschild Trust (Bermuda) Limited in relation to a claim for damages arising out of defective curtain walling, giving rise to the highest yet award of damages in a residential case.


Acting for East Homes Ltd in relation to a claim for £22million arising out of an “all reasonable endeavours obligation” and overage provisions in relation to land neighbouring the Olympic Village. The case involved complex planning issues, questions of construction and implied terms, as well as complex expert, valuation and factual disputes.


Acting in a wide range of 1954 Act cases, including several ground f cases related to a large redevelopment in Soho and the multi billion pound redevelopment of various main line stations including London Bridge and Waterloo, as well as several redevelopment break cases.


Acting in a number of dilapidations cases, including in relation to the only railway test track in the country


Acting for a company which designs and manufactures specialised and armoured vehicles in relation to a multi million pound claim under a joint venture for the manufacture of a large fleet of armoured vehicles pursuant to a government contract.  


Defending a multi million pound claim in relation to a claim for the share of profits of a development based on proprietary estoppel and a Pallant v Morgan equity


Acting in a claim for rectification of a share sale agreement relating to the purchase of shares for £13million.


Acting for the successful vendor in relation to a contract for sale of property. Summary judgment was granted in favour of the vendor ho claimed that the purchaser’s failure to pay a deposit on time amounted to a repudiatory breach of the contract entitling the vendor to terminate it (Samarenko v Dawn Hill House [2011] EWHC 3058.


 Zia has been representing clients in mediations for over 20 years and is an ADR Group accredited mediator. She has recently successfully mediated a number of large and  multi party disputes.




The Directories


"Incredibly solicitor-friendly" and "a superb advocate, especially when it comes to commercial property matters."

(Chambers & Partners 2018)


"Incredibly thorough, she picks up on points everyone else has missed and gets results." "Extremely knowledgeable and very effective at putting clients at ease and at explaining complex matters in understandable terms."

(Chambers & Partners 2018)


‘She has outstanding technical knowledge and intellect, and goes straight to the heart of a problem.’

(Legal 500 2017)


"Very strategic. She doesn't just give you the law, she explains the practical effects of what you can and cannot do within that law"

(Chambers UK 2017)


“She is clever, tough, and really uncompromising in the way she deals with her work”

(Chambers UK 2017)


“She’s very cool, calm and collected and she is so smooth she makes it look effortless. Amazing to watch, she’s very persuasive in the court room and has gravitas”

(Chambers UK 2017)


“For a QC, she is incredibly user-friendly. She doesn’t rely on juniors too much—she gets stuck in herself”

(Chambers UK 2017)


Zia Bhaloo QC is recognised as a Leading Silk in Property Litigation,

(Legal 500, 2016.)


“An excellent advocate and team player”
(Legal 500, 2016)


“An experienced and much heralded litigator who is noted for her expertise on property issues…She is also adroit at handling a range of other claims, including those concerning breach of trust and fraud” “Clearly a class act”

(Chambers UK 2016)


“Her advocacy and paperwork are just splendid” “An intellectual heavyweight who understands business. She is a great team player and good at leading from the front”

(Chambers UK 2016)


“She has exceptional attention to detail and produces litigation strategies which always pay off”

(Chambers UK 2016)


“A tenacious advocate, a commercially astute tactician, and great fun.”

(Legal 500 2015)

She wonderfully presents the most complicated issues in a way that clients understand.”

(Legal 500 2015)


"Really, really excellent; she knows property law inside out and is fantastic at cross-examination."
(Chambers UK 2015)


"She's approachable, charming, bright and efficient."
(Chambers UK 2015)


"An excellent advocate, one of whose many strengths is that she knows how important it is to be part of the team. She will go the extra mile to help and she is brilliant with clients."
(Chambers UK 2015)


"A formidable force that you will always be happy to have on your side."
(Chambers UK 2015)


"She is someone that exudes both calmness and confidence at the same time."
(Chambers UK 2015)


“Outstanding with clients who appreciate her user-friendly and down-to-earth approach.”

 (Legal 500, 2014)


“She is able, persuasive and diligent.”

(Chambers UK 2014)


“Offers all-round excellence, and has very strong advocacy and people skills.”

(Chambers UK 2014)


‘A talented and much-admired silk’

(Chambers UK 2014)


“Excellent with clients, she’s a real team player and a tough advocate.”

(Chambers UK 2014)


“Zia is an excellent tactician.”

(Chambers UK 2014)


“Incredibly bright”

(Chambers UK 2014)


“Great technical counsel for difficult housing law issues.”

(Chambers UK 2014)


Many clients view Enterprise Chambers’ Zia Bhaloo QC as “the perfect barrister” “a genuine team player”

(Legal 500, 2013)


She is known as "a true landlord and tenant specialist" and "a superb trial advocate who doesn't get into a fluster" and is "very good at thinking outside the box." Her commitment to client service is widely appreciated, with sources naming her as "a great team player" who is "dedicated to both instructing solicitors and clients" and "a pleasure to work with."

(Chambers UK 2013)


Sources praise her "understanding of commercial realities"

(Chambers UK 2013)


Zia Bhaloo QC has the "perfect combination of intellect, integrity, advocacy and personal skills"

(Legal 500, 2012)


Zia Bhaloo QC is also praised as a "compelling advocate."  She is doing well in Silk, having taken it last year, and is widely recognised as a expert in real property, particularly high value commercial landlord and tenant disputes.  She is "authoritative, extremely thorough and knows her brief like the back of your hand."

(Chambers & Partners 2012)


Zia Bhaloo QC of Enterprise Chambers acts for social landlords and local authorities on property and landlord and tenant matters.  She recently appeared on behalf of The Crown Estate in relation to the proposed sale of a residential portfolio to Peabody, and also acted for an RSL in relation to claims regarding adverse possession, right-to-buy legislation and race discrimination.

(Chambers & Partners 2012)


The set's top silk for property work is Zia Bhaloo QC.  She excels at service charge disputes and housing work and attracts a "very loyal and good-quality following."  Her recent work has included representing The Crown Estate in relation to the property and landlord and tenant aspects of the sale of its residential portfolio.  Solicitors say of her: "She provides an exceptional service - her advice and tactical good sense are phenomenal," sources say.

(Chambers & Partners 2012)

Zia Bhaloo QC is the set's leading property silk; "her command of the law is second to none," and she is praised as "a smiling assassin" in cross-examination.

(Legal 500, 2011)


"extremely meticulous" and "outstandingly clever" Zia Bhaloo QC

(Chambers & Partners 2011)


"Highly intelligent and tremendously down to earth"

(Chambers & Partners 2011)


"Property guru"

(Chambers & Partners 2011)


"Personable, assertive and decisive"

(Chambers & Partners 2011)


"Bhaloo's tactical advice is excellent"

(Chambers & Partners 2011)


Solicitors "place considerable faith in her all-round abilities, and she is a great example of honey being more deadly than vinegar." 

(Chambers & Partners 2010)  


 Zia Bhaloo is a "delight to deal with" 

(Legal 500, 2009)


"One of the best things about her is that she is a genuine team player."  She "gives her all to a case" and is "fantastic on landlord and tenant issues" 

(Chambers & Partners 2009)


"Solicitors would row out into the ocean for her" say peers. 

(Legal 500, 2008)


 ..."particularly adept at becoming part of the team"

(Chambers & Partners 2008)


According to one source, Bhaloo is "worth her weight in gold," is "approachable," and produces "cross-examinations that are deserving of applause."

(Chambers & Partners 2008)


 the "clever and inventive"  Zia Bhaloo

(Legal 500, 2007)


 The "tough and robust"  Zia Bhaloo is "not an easy ride for opponents" and gives an "excellent and professional service"

(Chambers & Partners 2007)


"..incredibly brainy and thorough" and "...and excellent all-rounder"

(Legal 500, 2006)


 ...someone who is "determined and not afraid to stand up to opponents"

(Chambers & Partners)



Career & Associations


LLB (Lond)

LLM (Lond)

Called to the Bar in 1990

Queen's Counsel 2010

Elected Bencher of Middle Temple 2014

Elected chairman of the Property Bar Association 2014

Swahili and Cutchi speaker

Member of the Chancery Bar Association