The General Council of the Bar of England and Wales
3 Bedford Row
London WC1R 4DB England
There are some 9,000 barristers in independent practice in England and Wales. Through them the Bar offers unparalleled expertise. Broad areas of specialisation include: Building and Construction, Commercial, Company, Criminal (including extradition), Defamation, Employment, Environment, Family, Housing, Immigration, Insolvency, Insurance, Liquidation, Personal Injury, Property, Taxation and Trusts, Wills and Estates. These can be subdivided further into more than 300 categories of expertise.
The Bar remains a referral profession, usually instructed by solicitors. However, members of certain professional bodies are able to seek advice direct from Counsel or may instruct counsel in non-court litigation. In some cases, members of the Bar provide their services pro bono, for example through Free Representation Units or the Bar Pro Bono Unit. Pro bono work has been undertaken also in humanitarian cases.
The Bar Council provides a regulatory framework, requiring work on complaints and discipline, ethics and standards, education and training, equal opportunities and pupillage. It also publishes guidance on a range of other subjects such as Practice Management, Health and Safety and Taxation.
The Council has representational responsibilities in many areas including the administration of justice and relations with Government, the European Union, legal professions in other countries, and other organisations with common interests. It participates in the negotiation of publicly funded fees and provides advice on legal aid matters, in addition to law reform consultation.
Journal or Newsletter
Continuing Legal Education Requirements
Code of Ethics
Practice by Foreign Lawyers
Current Officers & Leadership
Chairman of the Bar
Education & Training