Lawyers

					   The
  Legal
Profession
      Gray's Inn




Lincoln's Inn




                Inner Temple

        Middle Temple
                            Saint Paul’s
                             Cathedral

Royal Courts
 of Justice




               Parliament
BARRISTERS: History

Late 13th century:
Barristers move in the Inner and Middle Temples, later Gray’s and Lincoln’s

17th century:
The right to practice as an advocate in the Royal Courts restricted to
members of the Inns

1894:
Creation of the General Council of the Bar
(Bar Council)
1990:
Courts and Legal Services Act: the Bar Council
is the only authorised body for the profession

2006:
Creation of the Bar Standards Board: an independent regulatory board
BARRISTERS: QCs

As of December 2009

   - 12241 independent barristers
   - 1318 QCs

First Queen’s Counsel: Sir Francis Bacon (1603)

2003: Appointment of QCs suspended

2004 (November): Appointment of QCs resumed
Creation of a nine-member panel:
        chaired by a lay person
        two barristers
        two solicitors
        one retired judge
        three non-lawyers
BARRISTERS: Training

A law degree (LLB for Legum Baccalaureus)
  or
Common Professional Exam (CPE) or the Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL)




Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) (1 year)
[former Bar Vocational Course (BVC) before 2010]




Pupillage – apprenticeship with 12 qualifying sessions (1 year)
BARRISTERS: Public Access

2004 Public Access scheme:
Barristers can be directly instructed by members of the public
=> Public Access Barristers

It requires extra legal qualification



2009 Public Access Scheme Application by the Bar Standards Board:

 •Extension to “family, criminal and immigration work”. Publicly funded
 work will continue to be unavailable.

 •Barristers are to be permitted to engage in correspondence between the
 parties, although the prohibition on the conduct of litigation will remain.
SOLICITORS: History
Mid-16th century:
Two professions: attorneys (lawsuits) in common law and
                 solicitors (landed estates) in equity
1823:
Creation of the The London Law Institution, then The Law Institution
1873:
Fusion of attorneys and solicitors (Judicature Act) now known as
“solicitors of the Senior Courts”
1903:
Creation of The Law Society
1974:
Solicitors Act: defines the practice of solicitors
2007:
Creation of The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA):
an independent regulatory board (The Legal Services Act 2007)
SOLICITORS: Figures
As of July 2008
   - 139661 solicitors on the Roll
   - 45% are women

conveyancing:
transfer of ownership => monopoly lost (1990 Courts and Legal Services Act)

probate:
last wills and testaments (but also practiced by legal executives)

litigation:
Rights of Audience (1990 Act) => solicitor-advocate
Higher Courts Qualification Regulations 2000: higher rights of audience
   development (training, assessment, and a portfolio of cases)
   accreditation (experience and an advocacy assessment)
   exemption (sufficient experience)
   former barrister
A SPLIT PROFESSION?
PROS:
• independence of the bar
• recourse to all of the specialist barristers at the bar
• barrister = a check on the solicitor

• trials conducted by experienced specialist advocates

• cab-rank rule

CONS:
• duplication of work
• higher costs

• barristers unlikely to criticise solicitors

• barristers "over-specialised”

				
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