The Bar Standards Board is to dispense with its ‘list of defaulting solicitors’ and replace it with a new rule allowing barristers to refuse work under the cab-rank rule where there is an “unacceptable risk” that they will not get paid.
The Bar Standards Board (BSB) has strongly criticised the Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC), while remaining tight-lipped as to whether it should be scrapped. The criticisms came in a Future Bar Training consultation paper.
In a rare move, a barrister has been allowed to finish her pupillage at a personal injury law firm. Henrietta Hughes is set to become the first in-house counsel at Cheshire and London firm Hilary Meredith Solicitors when her pupillage ends in August.
A commercial barrister who was fined by a Bar disciplinary tribunal earlier this month for handling £5,000 of client money, faces suspension after a second tribunal found that he later handled a further £400,000 from another direct access client.
Another barrister has fallen foul of the rules on public access, this time by handling client money, leading to a six-month ban from handling such cases and a £1,000 fine for then failing to co-operate with the Legal Ombudsman and Bar Standards Board.
The Bar Standards Board (BSB) has proposed that it should be given, for the first time, the power to intervene in barristers’ practices and chambers. It also wants new powers on fines and setting up a compensation fund.
Tariq Rehman, the barrister ‘named and shamed’ by the Legal Ombudsman (LeO) for the number of complaints against him, has succeeded in a last-minute bid to remove the judge hearing his appeal.
The Bar Standards Board has promised to provide “lighter weight and less costly” regulation than its rivals as it applied to become a regulator of alternative business structures last week. “Many potential entities” wanted to “exploit the greater flexibility” that operating as an ABS could provide.
The number of QCs is continuing to fall, statistics from the Bar Standard Board have shown, dropping by more than 200 in four years. This contrasts with the steady rise in the total number of practicing barristers.
A firm set up by Mark Johnson, a solicitor and former partner at Geldards, is among the first dozen entities to be named today as regulated by the Bar Standards Board. He did it because of access to Bar Mutual indemnity insurance and the Bar’s “simpler and more transparent” rules.