The Bar Council has welcomed the Ministry of Justice announcement that experienced Chartered Institute of Legal Executive (CILEX) lawyers, after gaining seven years’ experience, will be able to apply to become Recorders and Judges of the Upper Tribunal, hearing complex civil, family, crime and tribunal cases.

Previously, CILEX lawyers could only apply for judicial roles overseeing less complex cases in the civil, family and magistrates’ courts and the first-tier tribunal.

According to the MoJ, the move will increase the number of judicial roles that legal professionals from under-represented groups can apply for.

Nick Vineall KC, Chair of the Bar Council, said:

"We welcome this announcement which is likely to contribute to a more diverse judiciary.

"Judges should be, and are, appointed on merit. If candidates for judicial appointment can demonstrate the skills and experience required for the role, it should not matter in which branch of the legal profession those skills and experience were acquired."