Wellbeing at the Bar 2024

Data from the Bar Council's Wellbeing at the Bar Report 2024 shows some improvements in wellbeing at the Bar.

Dr Darren Van Laar at Portsmouth University produced the report, which is based on data from 2023. The survey was distributed to the whole population of UK practising barristers.

The key findings include:

  • Overall, barristers reported higher levels of work satisfaction and wellbeing in 2023 when compared to 2021. This was in terms of their psychological wellbeing, workload management and supportive work environment.
  • 73% of respondents agreed they had supportive colleagues and/or work environment, a rise of 6% compared to 2021.
  • 61% of respondents felt they were satisfied with their job, the same percentage as in 2021.
  • 60% of respondents agreed they tended to have a good mood, 34.9% indicated they tended to feel down or in low spirits and of these, 23.7% reported low psychological wellbeing.
  • 49% of respondents reported they were managing their workloads well, but a third (31.4%) indicated they weren’t coping.
  • Women, barristers from an ethnic minority background, and those who are younger and more junior had lower overall wellbeing.
  • Barristers working in family law had significantly lower overall wellbeing compared to all other practice areas, except for the criminal Bar. Barristers practising in commercial law reported the highest average overall wellbeing.

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