Direct Access

Direct Access and our Barristers

Depending on the facts of the case, it is now possible to instruct a barrister directly, without going via a solicitor.

(Note: this scheme is not available under Legal Aid)

The clear advantage to our clients of “Direct Access” or “Public Access” is an enormous saving in cost. By instructing a barrister direct, clients have access to the expertise they need to conduct the case, without having to pay the additional costs of a solicitor.

The following general terms of service apply:

  • Barristers will charge either a fixed fee for a piece of work or an hourly rate depending on the nature of the work.
  • Upon acceptance of the work the barrister and the client will enter into a contract, setting out precisely what work will be done, the fees for the work, the time it will take and any notable deadlines.
  • Barristers fees will be charged according to their level of experience, the complexity of the case and the length of time involved in dealing with it. The time at which fees become payable will be agreed on a case by case basis and is agreed between barrister and client.
  • Where the fee relates to a hearing, the barrister is normally entitled to the fee, whether or not the hearing goes ahead, although you may be able to agree in advance a different basis for payment of the fee in such a case.
  • Fees for paperwork and conferences will be fixed in advance of the work. Where that is not possible, an estimate will be given. We may also be able to agree that there should be a “cap” on the fee charged for a particular piece of work.
  • Where fees are agreed in advance of the work being done, the barrister will require the fee to be paid before carrying out the work.
  • Where a fee is not fixed in advance and the work involves the production of paperwork (for example the drafting of a contract), the barrister will require you to pay for the work before it is released. If, when finding out more about the case, the barrister considers the work that is proposed will take longer than the time agreed, the barrister will contact you to arrange and amend the contract.

We have detailed guidance notes about Direct Access and it's use. Simply click here to download a copy.

For further information about direct instructions please contact the clerk Robert Archer or by phone on 020 7089 5700 or 07506116194. He will be able to discuss the facts of your case with you and explain what fees may be charged and when.

Please note this scheme is not available for legal aid cases.

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