Instructing Members of Chambers
Barristers practise as self-employed, referral professionals. Until relatively recently, it was not normally possible for members of the public to go to a barrister directly. They needed to use a solicitor or some other recognised professional or Licensed Access client. However, the Bar Council has relaxed its rules relating to direct access.
There are now, therefore, three main routes of access to a barrister.
(1) Professional Client Access
The following people may instruct barristers either on behalf of clients or on their own account:
In any matter for all types of work:
- Other authorised litigators
- Parliamentary agents, patent agents, trademark agents and Notaries
- European lawyers registered with the Law Society
- Employed barristers and/or European lawyers registered with the Bar Council
- Legal Advice Centres designated by the Bar Council
In limited areas of work:
- Licensed conveyancers in matters in which they are providing conveyancing services
- Foreign lawyers for advice only
(2) Public Access
Members of the Public, and commercial and non-commercial organisations are now able to instruct barristers directly on most civil matters. To discuss instructing a barrister on a Public Access basis please speak to Martin Williams on 020 7405 4321.
(3) Licensed Access
Licensed access is a licensing system whereby organisations or individuals who are suitable to instruct barristers because they have expertise in particular areas of the law can apply to the Bar Council to be licensed to instruct barristers directly in those areas. The licence can cover advice or representation or both and permit licensees to instruct barristers either on their own affairs or on behalf of their clients.
Enquiries about instructing members of chambers may be directed to the Senior Clerk, John Call, or any member of the clerking team. Registration details for all barristers can be found at the Bar Standards Board Barristers Register.
Barristers at 8 New Square handle litigation for some of the leading commercial organisations around the world, as well as for individuals and smaller companies or firms. Resources are available to deal with large-scale trials as well as speedy applications.
Contractual Terms of Work
Members of Chambers accept instructions on the New Standard Contractual Terms for the Supply of Legal Services by Barristers to Authorised Persons 2012.
The Terms have been approved by both the Bar Standards Board and by the Legal Services Board, which is responsible for the regulation of all lawyers in England & Wales. The Terms have also been approved by the Bar Mutual Indemnity Fund, which means that all parties can be satisfied that the Barrister’s work will be covered by their professional indemnity insurance policy.
Persons other than solicitors
In the Terms, “Authorised Persons” refers to solicitors and others regulated by the SRA. The Terms also apply to other legal professionals who instruct Members of Chambers (such as Patent Attorneys and Trade Mark Attorneys) with the following modifications:
- References to “the Authorised Person” shall be construed as references to the person instructing the Barrister.
- References to “the SRA” shall be construed as references to that person’s regulatory body.
- References to “the SRA Code” shall be construed as references to any code of conduct promulgated by that regulatory body, which applies to the person instructing the Barrister.
Chambers has a complaints procedure in place which allows us to address any issues you may have quickly and effectively. You can view our complaints procedure here.