You may now instruct a barrister directly. The Public Access Rules were introduced in 2004. Before then it was not possible for members of the public to engage a barrister without first instructing a solicitor. In certain circumstances it is now possible for barristers to accept work directly from members of the public, organisations and commercial companies without incurring the additional expense of a solicitor.
Using a barrister direct can help you to save a significant amount of money overall because you are not also paying fees to a solicitor, you can go to a specialist barrister of your choice, and correspondence and communications are faster because you are dealing with the barrister directly.
The areas of law covered by barristers in Albion Chambers include:
- Crime, Including Courts Martial
- Regulatory, including Health and Safety
- Personal Injury and Criminal Negligence
- Probate and the Administration of Estates
- Court of Protection
- Landlord and Tenant, and other land disputes
- General Common Law, Commercial, Contract and Tort (including commercial disputes and professional negligence
Full details of the Bar Council’s public access scheme can be found on their website at: www.barcouncil.org.uk. Not all cases will be suitable, but the site sets out details of the sort of work a barrister is permitted to conduct without a solicitor being involved.
In brief, a barrister can:
- Represent a client in courts and tribunals
- Provide specialist legal advice
- Assist in drafting correspondence, statements and documents required by the court.
A barrister cannot:
- Correspond directly with other parties in the case
- Collect evidence or interview witnesses
- Issue court documents
- Instruct experts directly on your behalf
- Handle clients’ money.
Because we have a large team of specialist barristers at Albion Chambers we can offer you a wide range of experience to suit each individual case. The seniority of the barrister will affect the cost to you. In setting fees we will also take in to account the complexity of your case, the urgency of the work and the amount of work involved.
We have banded our hourly rates in accordance with the years of call of the barrister instructed:
|Queen’s Counsel||£300 – 400|
|11 years and over||£180 – 250|
|6 – 10 years||£150|
|3 – 5 years||£125|
(Please note that barristers under three years call are not permitted to accept work under the public access scheme).
All fees must be paid before the barrister is permitted to carry out the work.
All barristers who accept work under the public access scheme in Albion Chambers are licensed to do so by the Bar Council and operate under the Code of Conduct for Barristers in England and Wales, and under the Public Access Rules.
Should you be interested in finding out more about instructing a barrister at Albion Chambers under the public access scheme, then please telephone us on 0117 927 2144 and ask to speak to one of the clerks. You will be asked to complete a short form and return it to us either by post, fax or email, so the barrister can assess whether your case is suitable to be dealt with under public access. If so, we can arrange a short meeting of approximately 30 minutes in Chambers or, in special circumstances, elsewhere, at no charge to consider the position in more detail. If the case can be progressed on that basis, you will be offered the opportunity to enter into an agreement with the barrister and the case can be taken forward.
Eligibility for Legal Aid
Barristers are not currently permitted to accept cases for which a client may be eligible for Legal Aid. Before contacting Chambers you may wish to consult the Legal Aid Eligibility Calculator via this link.