26 September 2017

Should self-employed barristers enjoy similar Shared Parental Leave rights to employed barristers?

That is the question that we are asking in our latest consultation which closes at 5pm, Friday, 17 February 2017.

Since April 2015, many employees and their partners have been able to share parental leave between both parents in the first year of a child's life (or within one year of their adoption).

Currently, there is no requirement for chambers to make shared parental leave arrangements for self-employed barristers. Shared parental leave could enable the self-employed Bar to retain female barristers and improve diversity within the profession.

We have considered the regulatory issues and believe there would be value in making the parental leave rules more flexible. We have examined this issue at the request of the Bar Council.

In the consultation paper, we ask respondents to consider:

  • an amendment to the rules in the BSB Handbook to incorporate shared parental leave;
  • the potential benefits of the proposed change for individual barristers and for the Bar as a whole; and
  • the potential challenges of implementing this rule change.