Fountain Court Chambers

London & Singapore

Francis Jacobs QCCall Date: 1964 | Silk Date: 1984

Expertise in European and International Law, including EU law and the European Convention on Human Rights.


  • City of London School
  • Christ Church Oxford
  • Nuffield College Oxford

Appointments, memberships, prizes

  • Professor of Law, King’s College London (2006 – )
  • Formerly: Advocate General, Court of Justice of the European Communities (1988-2006)
  • Member of the Privy Council (2005 – )
  • Bencher, Middle Temple; Reader, Middle Temple 2009
  • President, European Law Institute  (to 2013, now member of the Senate)
  • President, Centre of European Law, King’s College London
  • President, United Kingdom Association for European Law (to 2014)
  • President, UNIDROIT Administrative Tribunal
  • Trustee, British Institute of International and Comparative Law (to 2016)
  • Governor, British Institute of Human Rights
  • Patron, UK Environmental Law Association
  • President, Missing Children Europe  (to 2013, now a Patron)

Professional experience

Before his appointment to the European Court of Justice in 1988, Sir Francis combined an academic career as Professor of European Law in the University of London (1974-1988) with practice at Fountain Court Chambers, specialising in European Law.  He appeared in many prominent cases in the English courts and in the European Court of Justice, where he represented individuals, corporations, Governments (especially the United Kingdom) and the European Institutions (European Parliament, Council and Commission).  He also appeared in leading cases before the European Commission and Court of Human Rights.

He now advises on European and international law, including EU law and the European Convention on Human Rights. He has advised on proceedings in a wide variety of cases before national and international courts; competition authorities; arbitrators (including ICSID arbitrations); the European Court of Justice and the General Court; the EFTA Court; the European Court of Human Rights; and the International Court of Justice.


Author of several books on European law, including:

  • The Court of Justice of the European Communities (5th edition by Brown and Kennedy, Sweet & Maxwell 2000)
  • The European Convention on Human Rights (5th edition by White and Ovey, Oxford University Press 2010)
  • The Sovereignty of Law: the European Way  (Hamlyn lectures 2006) (Cambridge University Press 2007)
  • General Editor, The Oxford EC Law Library (Oxford University Press) 1986-2010
  • Founding Editor, Yearbook of European Law (Oxford University Press)
  • The European Convention on Human Rights, Sixth edition by Rainey, White and Ovey, 2014.


French; also some reading knowledge of German, Italian and Spanish.