Matthew Wyard is a specialist public law and private client barrister. He has appeared in courts/tribunals of all levels up to and including the Court of Appeal. For a full description of Matthew’s areas of expertise please see his specialist profiles below.
Matthew was appointed to the Attorney General's C Panel of Counsel to the Crown in 2021 and is recognised as a Rising Star in the latest edition of the Legal 500 for three of his practice areas (education, court of protection and community care) having secured all three rankings on his first year of application. He is the only member of the bar outside of chambers in Wales to be ranked in both the Welsh education and court of protection rankings.
Having spent his first few years of practice as an employed public law barrister at a national law firm regularly instructing counsel himself, Matthew understands what instructing solicitors want from counsel and ensures that he is accessible, practical in his advice and a part of the wider litigation team in disputes.
Alongside his thriving practice, Matthew sits as a Chairman in the Valuation Tribunal for England and is non-executive director of a music and media business, Thinkspace Education.
Matthew is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy. Please contact him for a copy of his privacy notice which sets out the basis upon which any personal data he may collect about you, or that is provided to him, will be processed. He will provide a copy of this to you within 2 working days of its request.
Matthew is a widely published legal author acting as a contributing editor to Clarke Hall and Morrison on Children and a regular contributor to Lexis PSL, providing updates on the law to the legal profession. He has also been published in The Times Higher Education, the Education Law Monitor and the Solicitors Journal. Matthew is currently writing for the forthcoming, inaugural edition of the new Education Law Handbook.
Public and Regulatory
Matthew maintains a deliberately broad and varied public law practice encompassing education, court of protection, community care, healthcare and life sciences, adult & children’s services, data protection & freedom of information, inquests and human rights.
He is happy to accept instructions on all public law matters, including for urgent and out of hours applications, as well as international matters.
Matthew is a member of the Attorney General’s C Panel of Counsel to the Crown. He is currently instructed by the Home Office as junior counsel (led by William Hansen) in the forthcoming country guidance case in the Upper Tribunal on the conditions in Somalia and is regularly instructed to prepare summary grounds of resistance. He has been instructed as junior counsel by the Secretary of State for Justice in employment proceedings and also by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office as a member of the counsel document review team in relation to the litigation arising from the death of Harry Dunn.
Court of Protection (health & welfare)
Matthew is a Rising Star in Court of Protection and Community Care in the most recent edition of the Legal 500. He has expertise in all matters that appear before the Court of Protection across both jurisdictions of health & welfare and property & affairs (for Matthew’s property and affairs expertise please see his dedicated property and estates CV).
In the health and welfare jurisdiction, Matthew regularly represents the Official Solicitor, RPRs, family members and local authorities across the range of applications in the jurisdiction. He has experience in ‘tier 3’ matters and is regularly sought after by public bodies to advise on the competing statutory schemes for those transitioning between children and adult services.
Recent representative examples of Matthew’s work in the Court of Protection include:
- H Council v JB
Advising and representing a local authority in respect of a section 16 challenge concerning P’s capacity to engage in sexual relations and make decisions concerning his education
- B CCG v HJ & Ors
Advising and representing P, through the Official Solicitor, in a section 21A challenge concerning a Third Party Personal Health Budget, as well as an urgent issue regarding international travel
- O County Council v JAS
Advising and representing a local authority in a section 21A application within which there were issues concerning P’s habitual residence
- B Council v PM
Advising and representing a local authority in respect of a DoLS challenge where P resides at an independent specialist college and the interplay between the education and DoLS schemes
- Re: SB
Advising a family member and corresponding with a local authority on their behalf concerning allegations that the local authority was unlawfully preventing them from seeing their adult children
- Re: MR
Advising and representing P in a dispute over a ward change following the Covid-19 pandemic
- KH v S County Council
Advising a local authority on the interplay between the different regimes under the Mental Health Act 1983, s21A Mental Capacity Act and s39 Children and Families Act 2014
- S City Council v JDC & Ors
Advising and representing a family member in this long running s21A and contact challenge
- Re: CEM
Representing P in a dispute over her end of life arrangements
According to the Legal 500, Matthew’s encyclopaedic knowledge of both English and Welsh social care law “is an advantage” to his clients.
In light of his public law expertise, he is regularly instructed in matters where young people are transitioning between children and adult services and has experience in disputes concerning (but not limited to) assessments and care planning, charging issues, compliance, care leavers, carers’ allowance, special guardianship allowance.
Recent examples of Matthew’s community care practice include:
- DA v BCC
Advising the prospective claimant to a judicial review challenge on the legality of the prospective defendant’s policy in relation to the paying of direct payments
- W v SCC
Advising the prospective defendant on a challenge to an alleged failure to follow the Working Together guidance, as well as the failure to provide transport to a post 16 learner
- Re: TG
Advising on the appropriate response to and legality of a local authority’s threatened proceedings over the estate of the deceased who passed with unpaid care fees
- Re: AM
Advising on the appropriate estate structuring to legitimately avoid care home fees through efficient planning
- Re: MA
Advising on the appropriate way to seek the reinstatement of direct payments
- AA v Newport City Council
A challenge to the legality of the local authority’s withdrawal and subsequent request for repayment of direct payments
- LT v Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council
A challenge to the local authority’s breach of section 37 of the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014
- CJ v Powys County Council
Advice and pre action correspondence concerning the local authority’s failure to assist with an application for a Disabled Funding Grant
- TL v Newport City Council
A challenge against a failure to maintain support outlined in a Care and Support Plan
- TL v Ceredigion Council
Judicial review challenge to the local authority’s failure to provide adequate care and support provision
Matthew’s life sciences and healthcare regulatory practice relates almost exclusively to public law litigation concerning Clinical Commissioning Groups and Health Boards, or the niche provision of regulatory advice and assistance to the cannabis industry. He has a particular interest in the regulations concerning the international movement of controlled substances, importing and exporting controlled and psychoactive substances, the legitimate cultivation of hemp based products and the plethora of regulations regarding how to bring pharmaceutical products to market. Examples of recent cases Matthew has been involved in include:
- Re: A
Providing advice on the domestic regulatory framework to Middle Eastern and African based joint venturers looking to establish a UK distribution company for the worldwide distribution of cannabis seeds
- Re: KM
Providing advice on the application of the EU Tobacco Products Directive to UK sellers
- Re: L
Advising on liability and quantum arising from a data breach from an NHS Trust
- Re: V
Advising upon, settling and drafting the settlement agreement in a dispute between the directors of, and consultants for, an international pharmaceutical company as to the apportionment of liability between the company and consultants upon the consultants’ retirement
- MM v Cardiff and Vale University Health Board
Judicial review of a health board’s decision to refuse to provide adequate nursing care at the claimant’s home thereby preventing him from visiting his mother
- JW v Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council
Challenge to the legality of the local authority’s decision not to fund rental costs under section 117 aftercare
Data protection, information, media and privacy
Matthew has both legal and practical experience working in the media and data protection fields, having been appointed as a board adviser, and later a non-executive director, of a music company since 2017. His complimentary public law practice means that he is well placed to advise on the use of public law remedies and challenges to advance commercial interests.
The vast majority of Matthew’s work in this field is highly confidential however, recent examples of such work include:
- Re: LL
Advising on prospects, evidence and drafting particulars of claim in a claim brought for breaches of the GDPR and misuse of private information
- Re: CG
Pro bono advice on whether a cyber attack constituted a breach of contract, as well as associated data protection issues
- Re: CS
Advising a leading foundation school on their obligations to disclose personal information
- Re: A
Considering a claim for malicious falsehood and breach of copyright arising out of an employment dispute
- Re: XX
Advising on the data protection obligations of a social worker in respect of potential childcare proceedings
- Re: TSE
Advising on the use of personal information by a music school within course materials
Examples of recent non-contentious work undertaken in the media sector includes:
- Paid contribution agreements
- Unpaid contribution agreements
- Music, film and sound recording licences
- Data protection policies
- Terms and Conditions of Business
- Payment plans and financial agreements
- A variety of intellectual property agreements
- Contracts of employment
- Consultancy agreements
Please see Matthew’s specific education CV for more information.
Matthew Wyard has good experience in advising on, and representing parties at, Inquests. Recent cases include:
- Inquest touching upon the death of MR – advising and representing the community nurse accused of causing the deceased’s death; this involved a comprehensive consideration of expert evidence into the post mortem distribution of morphine into the bloodstream.
- Inquest touching upon the death of MD – advising the mother of the deceased child in relation to scope, article 2 issues and disclosure regarding the apparent suicide following bullying at school.
- Inquest touching upon the death of AR- advising and representing the mother of the deceased at a Pre Inquest Review Hearing considering issues of scope, article 2, witnesses and evidence.
Professional Discipline and Regulatory Law
Matthew is well placed to advise and represent professionals, regulators and interested parties in the variety of professional discipline and regulatory proceedings, including statutory appeals. He is on the Nursing and Midwifery Council’s panel of prosecuting advocates and also defends in such proceedings. Whilst working in house Matthew was involved in a large number of fitness to practise issues concerning doctors, nurses, social workers and dentists.
Additionally, Matthew has experience defending teachers before the Teaching Regulation Agency and those seeking to challenge registration decisions by Ofsted in the Care Standards Tribunal.
View Full CV
Importation and exportation of cannabinoid products post-Brexit
5th Feb 2021
Importation and exportation of cannabinoid products post-Brexit
3PB’s Matthew Wyard, a specialist regulatory barrister has issued a briefing, in tandem with Ricardo Geada, head of the cannabis and regulatory team at law firm Mackrell Solicitors aimed at companies working within the CBD industry post-Brexit.
The briefing is a must-read for all businesses continuing to trade cannabinoid products post-Brexit and has been distributed by the Cannabis Trades Association to its members.
The Additional Learning Needs and Education Tribunal (Wales) Act 2018: An update
4th Nov 2020
Public law barrister Matthew Wyard, who specialises in the education sector reviews the hidden extras in ‘The Additional Learning Needs and Education Tribunal (Wales) Act 2018 (Commencement No.1) Order 2020 which came into force this Monday 2 November.
A look at the draft Curriculum and Assessment (Wales) Bill: Problems and pitfalls
8th Jul 2020
3PB’s specialist public law barrister Matthew Wyard has reviewed the draft Curriculum and Assessment (Wales) bill. The bill was introduced to the Senedd on 6 July 2020 without prior public consultation.
Novel foods regulation: Getting your product to the UK market
8th Jun 2020
3PB’s Public and Regulatory Law barrister Matthew Wyard has reviewed the law regulating novel food products in the UK.
Regulatory Update - The Tobacco Products Directive
4th Jun 2020
3PB’s Public and Regulatory Law barrister Matthew Wyard has provided an update on UK tobacco law in light of Article 7 of the EU Tobacco Productive Directive.
UK Market Authorisation for New Medicinal Products
4th Jun 2020
3PB’s Public and Regulatory barrister Matthew Wyard has provided an overview of the MHRA’s Market Authorisation process for bringing new products to market in the UK. Designed for the pharmaceutical industry and those advising them, this article looks at the different types of authorisation available and the process for approving medicines in the UK.
Education: The Impact of the Coronavirus Bill
20th Mar 2020
Education law barrister, Matthew Wyard examines the impact of the Coronavirus Bill on the independent education sector.
Issuing an EHC Plan - the meaning of ‘necessary’ (Nottinghamshire County Council v SF and another)
12th Mar 2020
Education and public law barrister Matthew Wyard and Paul Wyard of Sinclairslaw review Nottinghamshire CC v SF and another, a case in which the Court of Appeal held that the First-Tier Tribunal had correctly construed the meaning of ‘necessary’ in section 37(1) of the Children and Families Act 2014 (CFA 2014) in finding that it was necessary for special educational provision to be made for a child in accordance with an EHC Plan – even though the school had identified and made provisions for the child’s needs and the child was making progress at school.
This article was first published by LexisPSL on 9 March 2020.
RE: ACC & Ors  EWCOP 9
10th Mar 2020
Matthew Wyard analyses Re: ACC &Ors  EWCOP 9, a case concerning the conflicts of interests that may arise where property and affairs deputies instruct a firm with which they are associated to carry out instructions for P, or to conduct litigation on P’s behalf.
"[...] the addition of Matthew Wyard to the team has given real fire power to their Court of Protection offering in Wales.'"
‘His in-depth knowledge of Welsh social care law is an advantage.’
Legal 500 2021/Court of Protection and Community Care/Rising Stars/Tier 1/Wales and Chester
"[...] 3PB's presence in this region comes in the form Matthew Wyard… He specialises in public law challenges in the education sector, civil claims against education institutions and special educational needs appeals."
‘One of very few barristers in the Country who has a true grasp of Welsh Education Law.’
Legal 500 2021/Education/Rising Stars/Tier 1/Wales and Chester
''I instruct Matthew regularly and am never disappointed by the level of professionalism and knowledge he brings to each case he is instructed on. Matthew has a unique way of identifying the key issues of a case and preparing submissions in a clear and persuasive manner, in order to achieve the best result possible. I can trust that he will always provide honest and efficient advice and am happy to have good working relationship with him.''
As you can imagine, it is extremely stressful for families to be going through this so I just wanted to say a big thank you for supporting me through [the] tribunal. I would recommend you to anyone going through similar proceedings. We are delighted with the outcome and have not stopped smiling since!
Firstly, the client would like for me to pass on their gratitude to Matt for all of his assistance on this matter. They described him as “a really nice guy who fought formidably for them and have nothing but praise for the work he has undertaken’’.
Clients feedback to instructing solicitor