The role of the Independent Reviewers is to assist us in ensuring that our regulatory decisions remain of a high quality, that we are effective and fair, and that all the correct processes and procedures have been followed properly.

The Independent Reviewers have two main responsibilities:

  • to carry out reviews of certain regulatory decisions taken by staff and the Independent Decision-making Body,  in accordance with our policy Reviews of regulatory decisions and the Independent Reviewers;  and
  • to carry out regular audits of a random sample of cases and decisions to check  the processes have been followed correctly and the cases have been handled fairly and consistently and that there has been appropriate consideration of equality, diversity and inclusion issues  in line with what we are supposed to do as the regulator of barristers.

We can also ask the Independent Reviewers to conduct thematic reviews of areas of our work in taking regulatory decisions and make recommendations about changes we could make to improve our systems. 

The Independent Reviewers do not have the power to take decisions in individual cases following a review but can recommend that we look at a case again or change a decision. Our senior staff will decide whether a case should be sent to an Independent Reviewer for review. You should contact the person dealing with your case if you think a regulatory decision should be looked at again. 

The Independent Reviewers do not enter into direct correspondence with those involved in a case that is being reviewed. Where a party does contact an Independent Reviewer directly, they will read the communication and forward it to the relevant department to provide a response or take such other action as is required. 

The current Independent Reviewers are Velia Soames and Sarah Baalham.