02 September 2013

Public Access

The Public Access Rules are Rules C119 - C131 of the Code of Conduct in the BSB Handbook.

Training requirements

All barristers must complete Public Access training prior to undertaking Public Access work.

A small number will be eligible for a waiver from the training, but they must apply for this. Those most likely to be eligible for a waiver will be able to demonstrate extensive experience of undertaking Public Access work and Legal Aid cases involving vulnerable clients, and the associated knowledge and understanding required.

Barristers of fewer than three years' practising experience can undertake Public Access work if they complete the new Public Access training.


Public access barristers and the new Code of Conduct

From 6 January 2014 the Bar should refer to a new Handbook for rules and guidance on their conduct as barristers. The revised Code now forms Part two of the new BSB 'Handbook', which brings together all the BSB's regulations and guidance for barristers into one publication.

For Public Access barristers, one of the key changes is that self-employed barristers are allowed to apply for an extension to their practising certificate in order to be able to conduct litigation.

This means that, as long as Public Access barristers have the correct authorisation, their clients no longer have to act as a self-representing litigant or instruct a solicitor, should the case go to court.


Legal aid work and public access barristers

The Public Access scheme has been widened to include clients who might be entitled to Legal Aid.


Find out more

To apply for a waiver from the training requirement, download the form on the right hand side of this webpage.

For more information email us via bsbcontactus@barstandardsboard.org.uk

The BSB has appointed the Bar Council, Barristers Direct and HJT Training to deliver Public Access training schemes.

Contact details for the Bar Council are: 020 7242 0082, trainingandevents@barcouncil.org.uk



Contact details for Barristers Direct are: 020 7822 7000, lc@barristersdirect.co.uk or http://barristersdirect.co.uk/home/training.asp

Contact details for HJT Training are: 020 3405 2942, enquiries@hjt-training.co.uk or http://www.hjt-training.co.uk/public-access