Terms and conditions
Instructions from solicitors and other authorised persons
In 2013 the Bar Council introduced Standard Conditions of Contract for the Supply of Legal Services by Barristers to Authorised Persons 2012 (the “Bar Council Standard Conditions of Contract”).
The Bar Council Standard Conditions of Contract have been drafted so as to be compatible with the insurance cover available to barristers under the Bar Mutual Indemnity Fund scheme.
At Commercial Chambers we accept instructions from solicitors and other “Authorised Persons” (as defined) on the Bar Council Standard Conditions of Contract.
Any proposed amendment to these terms will only be effective if agreed in writing by the individual barrister being instructed.
Instructions by clients under the direct public access scheme
We are authorised to accept instructions directly from clients under the direct public access scheme.
Further information about this scheme can be found on the Bar Council’s website which can be accessed by clicking here.
Where we are instructed under the direct public access scheme we will send you a client care letter setting out the terms on which our services are offered under that scheme for your agreement.
Clients, especially those considering instructing a barrister under the Direct Public Access scheme, should understand that a typical piece of commercial litigation comprises a process involving a number of stages. Those stages can be described as: (1) pre-action; (2) issue of proceedings; (3) exchange of statements of case; (4) disclosure of documentary evidence; (5) exchange of witness evidence; (6) expert evidence; and (7) trial. A timetable for the case and a cost budgeting exercise will be carried out at a case and cost management hearing. Alternative dispute resolution may take place during the process (e.g. mediation). Following trial there might even be an appeal. Settlement may, of course, be achieved at any stage in the process. If settlement is not achieved, the process from the issuance of proceedings to a determination following a trial might ordinarily be expected to last about 18 months and the costs of each side might be as much as £100,000 or more. Actual costs will depend on the precise nature of the matter.
Bar Standards Board / BSB handbook / Code of conduct
We are regulated by the Bar Standards Board. We are required to provide our services and act in accordance with the Code of Conduct contained in part 2 of the BSB Handbook.
Confidentiality and conflicts of interest
We take client confidentiality very seriously.
Onboarding – Direct Public Access Clients
How we work with our Direct Public Access Clients.
Onboarding – Solicitors
How we work with our Solicitors.
If for any reason you wish to make any complaint about our service in the first instance please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Clients also have a right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman, an independent complaints body, established under the Legal Services Act 2007. You can access the Legal Ombudsman’s website here.
Clients can complain to the Legal Ombudsman if they are unhappy with the final response to their complaint, or if their complaint has not been dealt with within eight weeks. Clients who have a right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman are individuals and, broadly speaking, small businesses and charities. A full list of who has a right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman is available here. You can write to the Legal Ombudsman at: Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ; tel: 0300 555 0333; email: email@example.com.
You must complain to the Legal Ombudsman either within 6 years of your barrister’s actions/failure to act or no later than 3 years after you should reasonably have known there were grounds to complain. You must also complain to the Legal Ombudsman within 6 months of receiving your barrister’s final response to your complaint.You can access previous data regarding complaints made to the Legal Ombudsman and decisions of the Legal Ombudsman here. The data on the Legal Ombudsman’s website shows providers which received a Legal Ombudsman’s decision in the previous 12 months. In each case, the data shows whether the Legal Ombudsman required the provider to give the consumer a remedy. You can also access the Barrister’s Register here which shows whether a barrister has a current practising certificate and whether a barrister has any disciplinary findings against them.