Elections for the 2017 Bar Council

1 September 2016

Annual elections for the Bar Council will take place this autumn and successful candidates will join from 1 January 2017 for a three-year term, except where a different term length is stated below.  Those members who are due to retire from the Bar Council on 31 December 2016 are eligible for re-election. 

Please note that in April this year the Bar Council approved a change to the Constitution in relation to the definition of the term 'Young Bar'.  The categories for Juniors have, therefore, changed from under/over 7 years' Call to under/over 7 years in practice, the full definitions of which can be found in Part II, paragraphs 2(a)(viii) and (ix) of the Constitution. 

There are vacancies in the following categories:  

Self-employed Queen's Counsel

2 x full-term vacancy

Self-employed Junior Counsel over seven years in practice

7 x full-term vacancy

2 x one-year vacancy

Self-employed Junior Counsel under seven years in practice

2 x full-term vacancy

Employed Junior Counsel over seven years in practiceor Queen's Counsel

3 x full-term vacancy

Employed Junior Counsel under seven years in practice

2 x full-term vacancy

2 x two-year vacancy

1 x one-year vacancy

Dual practitioners are invited to stand in the category which best represents the area in which the majority of their practice is conducted i.e. employed or self-employed. 

The Bar Council meets eight times a year (seven of the meetings are held on a Saturday morning) and all elected and representative members are expected to attend as many of these meetings as possible, but at least a minimum of four.  Elected Bar Council members also serve on one or more representative committees which meet on average six to ten times a year, normally on a weekday evening. There are dial-in facilities for those who are unable to attend committee meetings in person. 

This is an excellent opportunity for members of the profession to represent their constituency - whether that is practice area, Circuit or colleagues who have been practising for a similar amount of time - and bring their views to the Bar Council's attention for discussion and debate.  Becoming an elected member of the Bar Council provides a real chance to get involved in how the Bar Council discharges its representative functions and an opportunity to represent the profession. 

The Bar Council is keen to ensure that Bar Council members reflect the diversity of the profession and would like to encourage all eligible members of the Bar to consider standing for election.

To be eligible, a candidate must: 

(a)     hold a valid practising certificate; 

(b)     submit a completed and signed nomination form no earlier than 09:00 on Wednesday 7 September 2016 and no later than 17:00 on Wednesday 21 September 2016. 

The notice of the elections, which outlines the procedure for nomination, can be found here and the nomination form can be found here. You can also read more about it in the Bar Council Constitution here

Meanwhile, if you have any questions, please contact Bev Dougherty, Executive Office Manager, at Elections@BarCouncil.org.uk