He is a highly effective and incisive counsel.
Chambers & Partners, 2024
A good and sensible opponent. He's very measured and concise.
Chambers and Partners, 2021
Hilton provides clear and concise advice."
Chambers & Partners, 2024
He's very pragmatic and makes powerful submissions.
Chambers and Partners, 2021
Calm, measured and experienced.
Chambers and Partners, 2021
He often comes up with creative solutions to legal problems
Chambers & Partners, 2024
He has good drafting skills, is personable and clients like his unflustered approach.
Legal 500, 2018
He’s very approachable, gets back to you very quickly and you feel that you can ask ridiculous questions when you need a bit of reassurance. He’s good at setting out risks to local authorities.
Chambers and Partners, 2018
He is very shrewd, wise, measured and experienced. He is more than a safe pair of hands.
Chambers and Partners, 2018
A man of great experience and knowledge whom it's always a pleasure to work with.
Chambers and Partners, 2019
He has a very nice manner in court.
Chambers and Partners, 2020
He's very pragmatic, sensible and willing to take difficult points on behalf of local authorities.
Chambers and Partners, 2020
He's a safe pair of hands and has a very relaxed, calm manner.
Chambers and Partners, 2020
A very experienced local authority advocate.
Chambers and Partners, 2022
Hilton is really helpful and grasps the issues very quickly.
Chambers and Partners, 2022
Hilton has an encyclopedic knowledge of community care.
Chambers and Partners, 2023
He is very experienced
Chambers and Partners, 2023
He has a very good knowledge and understanding of local authorities.
Chambers and Partners, 2023

Tony specialises in public (administrative) law. His principal clients are English local authorities – about a third of London boroughs and several city and county councils.

He has more than 25 years’ experience of advising and acting for them in social services cases. Tony has probably been instructed at least once about every non-childcare issue a local authority social services solicitor could conceivably encounter.

He regularly appears on their behalf in the Administrative Court, the Court of Protection, the Upper Tribunal and the County Court. He has also acted for them in the Supreme Court (twice), the Court of Appeal (many times) and even the High Court of Northern Ireland (once).

Tony has a strong paperwork practice, which comprises writing advices, drafting letters (in particular pre-action protocol replies) and re-drafting policy documents.

He has hosted and taken part in many seminars, in particular about NRPF issues, ordinary residence, age assessments and charging for care.

If you would like more information about Tony’s practice, please contact his clerks or call +44 (0)20 7405 6114.


Adult social care - Care Act 2014

Tony regularly advises and represents local authorities in Care Act 2014-related matters such as:

Needs assessments

Eligible needs

Care and support plans

Charging for care:

  • Charging policy
  • Financial assessments
  • Minimum income guaranteed (MIG) issues
  • Disability-related expenditure (DRE)
  • Deferred payment agreements (DPA)
  • Recovery of charges
  • Deprivation of capital
  • Personal injury monies
  • Trusts

Ordinary residence disputes:

  • Deeming provisions
  • Specified accommodation
  • Cross-border placements
  • Referrals for determination by SSHSC
  • Financial adjustments

Preferred accommodation


Direct payments

Continuity of care

Transition for children


Delayed hospital discharges

Adult social care - Mental Health Act 1983

Tony has extensive experience of acting for local authorities in cases related to the Mental Health Act 1983.

  • Types of detention
  • Procedures for detention
  • Guardianship
  • Identity of nearest relative under section 26
  • Displacement of nearest relative under section 29
  • After-care services under section 117
  • Local authority and ICB (integrated care board) responsibility for section 117 after-care

Children’s services

Tony’s advice and representation concerning children services includes:

Part III of the Children Act 1989

  • Support for families under section 17
  • Accommodation for children under section 20: G v. Southwark-type cases and D v. Southwark-type cases
  • Looked after children functions
  • Leaving care functions
  • Secure accommodation under section 25
  • Co-operation between authorities under section 27
  • Recoupment of cost under section 29
  • Ordinary residence disputes under section 30

Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1970 (re. disabled children)

Special guardian allowances

Foster carer allowances

Adoption allowances

Age assessments

Tony has acted in and continues to act for local authorities in some of the most significant age assessments such as R (AOJ) v. Islington LBC [2024] EWHC 427 See his notable cases for more details.


No recourse to public funds (NRPF)

  • Asylum-seekers
  • Over-stayers
  • EUSS (EU Settlement Scheme) cases
  • Human rights assessments

Mental Capacity Act 2005

Tony advises local authorities on cases concerning the Mental Capacity Act 2005:

Capacity issues

Deprivation of liberty (DOL):

  • Authorisations under Schedule A1
  • Ordinary residence disputes under Schedule A1
  • Eligibility under Schedule 1A

Section 21A applications

Other health and welfare cases

Property and affairs:

  • Powers of attorney
  • Deputies

International protection under Schedule 3

Notable cases


  • BA (Manchester)

Professional memberships

  • ALBA