Rahul Varma


Selborne Chambers
10 Essex Street
London WC2R 3AA
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Rahul has a Chancery and commercial practice.  He regularly appears in the High Court, County Court, Property Chamber, and various ADR forums.

Further to his practice, Rahul has contributed to LexisNexis, The Estates Gazette, and Practical Law. You can follow his updates on legal issues on Twitter.

Before coming to the Bar, Rahul read Law at King’s College London. He is a Major Exhibition scholar of the Inner Temple, for whom he now interviews scholarship candidates. Rahul has won a series of other awards for academic achievement and oratory alike.


Rahul is instructed in all manner of cases concerning property and estates.

His work includes: forfeiture and possession (including break clauses); trusts (including TOLATA matters); land registration and title disputes (including adverse possession and boundary disputes); service charges; mortgages and securities; breaches of covenant (including s. 168, CLARA applications); wills and inheritance; dilapidations and disrepair; 1954 Act renewals; rent reviews; tenancy deposits; lease extensions and acquisition orders; overage, options and pre-emption rights; nuisance; easements and rights of way; trespass; specific performance and injunctive relief.


  • Acting for a railway company denying the adverse possession of lands adjoining a railway arch. The case raised novel insolvency issues;
  • Advising commercial tenants on a claim for overpaid service charges worth c. £700k;
  • Advising on restrictive covenants relating to the proposed development of a £3m+ freehold title;
  • Advising a party looking to vary HMLR restrictions relating to overage;
  • Acting for the appellant landlord in an Upper Tribunal appeal against a s. 168(4), CLARA determination;
  • Acting for a solicitors firm in proceedings involving, inter alia: an attempt to rely on an equitable charge to recover fees limitation-barred in contract; alleged undue influence; and s.53(1)(a), LPA 1925 formalities;
  • Acting for the long lessees of several residential blocks seeking to vary their leases to introduce shared repairing obligations;
  • Advising a freeholder in relation to various disputes arising out of inherent defects in a mixed-use hotel/apartment complex;
  • Acting for the head lessees of a substantial residential development seeking to avoid forfeiture;
  • Acting for the residential landlord in a trial concerning whether multiple penalties under s. 214, HA 2004 could be awarded in respect of the self-same deposit monies;
  • Acting for a Premier League footballer in possession proceedings arising out of rent arrears and disrepair;
  • Acting for the respondent in an appeal against a TOLATA declaration concerning (inter alia) the admissibility of a foreign will as fresh evidence;
  • Acting for lessees seeking an Acquisition Order in a ‘missing landlord’ case under Part III, LTA 1987;
  • Drafting submissions to an arbitrator regarding the relevance of Calderbank offers in a rent review.


Rahul often deals with matters concerning contracts, business structures (companies, LLPs, partnerships), and professional negligence.

His work includes: the sale and carriage of goods; the supply of services; agency (including estate agent’s commission); trusts of personal property; guarantees and indemnities; bailment and conversion; restitution; fiduciaries; directors’ duties; minority shareholders’ relief; derivative actions; share sales; overage; and joint ventures.


  • Advising on a QBD claim alleging a constructive trust over classic cars;
  • Advice on a ‘best endeavours’ clause in an overage claim worth c.£1m;
  • Advising defendants to a £290k commission claim concerning: (a) whether standard terms were penal; and (b) the enforceability of a personal guarantee. The claim was struck out;
  • Acting for parties seeking specific performance of a contract collateral to a share sale;
  • Appearing in a multi-day trial to determine whether a joint venture operated as a partnership, a company or both;
  • Acting for a solicitor in a claim for unpaid fees raising issues of novation, privity, and third-party rights;
  • Acting for the owners of a large residential property in Kensington in a multi-day trial concerning builders’ negligence;
  • Advising a corporate freeholder as to whether to seek maintenance contributions qua landlord or qua company;
  • Advising on a personal claim in deceit against a director said to have made a fraudulent misrepresentation of his company’s solvency by entering into a licence on its behalf;
  • Acting for the defendant dentist in a claim for unjust enrichment brought by an NHS trust, featuring a corollary partnership dispute;
  • Drafting amendments to solicitors’ LLP agreement to introduce a ‘salaried member’;
  • Acting for a taxi company suing software designers for losses caused by their defective booking system.


Rahul assists individuals and corporations with various aspects of insolvency and restructuring.

His work covers: winding-up; bankruptcy; insolvency offences; debt recovery; administrations; delays to dissolution; restorations to the register; vesting orders; and related relief.


  • Obtaining repeated extensions of the administrations of companies in a group with a total indebtedness of c. £25m;
  • Acting for the creditor in the QBD trial to determine whether the debtor facing an application for a charging order held the subject property on trust for his relatives;
  • Negotiating the settlement of a pre-bankruptcy debt held to have crystallised in a post-bankruptcy charging order;
  • Obtaining an urgent order for the postponement of dissolution to allow the company’s former employee to bring a claim;
  • Acting for a debtor seeking to prevent the presentation of a bankruptcy petition whilst the Court of Appeal resolved his challenge to the underlying Statutory Demand;
  • Obtaining a total of 28 charging orders in relation to seven discrete judgments made in a single claim;
  • Resisting an urgent application to restrain the presentation of a winding up petition.

Please see Rahul’s Privacy Notice here.


  • Chancery Bar Association
  • Property Bar Association


  • LLB (hons) – Kings College London
  • BPTC/BVC (‘Very Competent’) – BPP Law School, London
  • Inner Temple (Major Exhibition scholar)