Regulating the profession of England and Wales
The Bar Standards Board (BSB) is
responsible for maintaining the Code of Conduct of the Bar of
England and Wales, which provides the rules that all barristers
must abide by.
The general purpose of the Code is to provide the requirements
for practice as a barrister and the rules and standards of conduct
applicable to barristers that are appropriate in the interests
The BSB also issues guidance on the rules governing
qualification and practice and conduct by barristers.
Guidance usually relates to the application
of particular provisions of the Code of Conduct of the Bar of
England and Wales.
The Bar Handbook
The Bar Handbook is a practical handbook bringing together details and guidance relating to all barristers, including:
- professional obligations
- parameters of work
- permitted charging arrangements
- ability to get paid
- getting redress when not paid
- tax and VAT liabilities
- practice planning and good practice advice
- relevant statutory and regulatory references
Continuing Professional Development
The Bar Standards Board is committed to ensuring that the profession continues to offer legal services of the very highest quality, therefore all practising barristers are required to complete continuing professional development (CPD). Whilst attending courses alone will not guarantee that appropriate standards are maintained, the Bar Standards Board considers that mandatory compliance with a planned programme of CPD is essential if barristers are to maintain and improve their skills.
Complaints and hearings
The BSB’s complaints and disciplinary system exists to establish systems to identify areas of risk to consumers, take action to remedy poor performance by barristers (or members of the profession) and, where things go wrong, to provide an efficient and fair complaints and disciplinary system.
The Barristers' Complaints Advisory Service (BCAS) comprises members of the Bar who have indicated their willingness to assist barristers against whom complaint has been made to the Complaints Commissioner.