Direct Access to a Barrister

In July 2004 the ban on barristers receiving instructions directly from members of the public was relaxed. Instead of instructing a barrister through a solicitor, in many cases members of the public can now approach and instruct a barrister directly.

St Albans Chambers registered Direct Access barristers can assist with advice, drafting and representation.

Instructing a barrister directly is simple and easy. Please fill in the contact form and a member of our team will be in touch with you shortly.

What is the advantage of instructing a barrister directly?

Direct Access is an efficient and cost-effective way of obtaining legal advice and representation. By instructing a barrister directly it enables you to obtain first-hand advice from a barrister which could result in a quicker resolution and therefore reducing your overall legal spend. When both solicitors and barristers are involved this can increase the costs.

Is my case suitable for Direct Access?

On receipt of a completed enquiry form, we will assess whether your case is suitable for direct access. It maybe that your case is suitable in part but you may require the services of a solicitor to act on things that you are not able to administer yourself. We will inform you as quickly as possible and if required we can help you find a suitable solicitor.

What is my role if the case is suitable?

You will be treated by the court as a Litigant in Person even when instructing a barrister direct as they do not go on record as acting for you. NB Our barristers do not conduct litigation – all litigation will need to be completed by the client – our barristers can advise on this, but do not have conduct of litigation or able to go ‘on record’ for the client.
Trial bundles will need to be prepared by the client if the other party are not responsible or directed to by the court – our barristers can advise on this. You will therefore need to carry out certain tasks which a solicitor would otherwise do on your behalf. This would include preparing the papers that the barrister will need. You will have to prepare a case summary which is a synopsis of your case, a chronology or timeline of events and instructions as to exactly what you are asking the barrister to do. Thereafter you will be told exactly what else you have to do by the barrister. You will need to make sure that you are able to comply with any court orders as you will effectively be responsible for the management of your case.

Do I enter into a contract with the barrister?

Yes. Once fees have been agreed you will receive a contract which will be in the form of a Client Care Letter. You will be required to sign to confirm agreement to the terms set out therein. It is important that you read this contract carefully.

Fee Structure and payment?

Work is normally charged on an hourly rate basis unless a fixed fee has been agreed in advance. You will be provided with a letter of engagement containing a note of the fees to be charged. For every item of work or attendance at a hearing, the fees are to be paid in advance in line with the client care letter.

We have Barristers with expertise in the following area of law:

  • Employment
  • Matrimonial law
  • Criminal law
  • Landlord and tenant
  • Property disputes
  • Personal Injury
  • Partnership disputes
  • Company law
  • Contractual disputes
  • Debt actions
  • Insolvency Licensing

Direct Access barristers at St Albans Chambers are flexible in working locations and will travel to courts throughout Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and London. Our members will travel further a field if required.

How to contact us

You can make initial contact with us  by speaking to one of our clerks on 01727 843383 or completing our Direct Access Enquiry Form