|Instructing a Barrister|
The following information may assist people who have not had previous experience instructing a barrister.All barristers in private practice accept instructions from solicitors. If you are not a solicitor then you should first check if the particular barrister will accept work directly from a person who is not a solicitor.
There is presently a requirement that barristers undertake only "barristers' work" as defined by the 2007 Barristers Rule.
Make sure to:
Documents to be supplied - Advisory work
You may ask a barrister to give you advice in writing or speak to you personally at a conference or meeting. In either case, the barrister must be informed, preferably in writing, of the nature of the advice required or the question upon which the barrister's advice is sought.
Relevant facts and documentation must also be supplied. You should prepare a written list in date order which sets out the facts and events which you think may be relevant. Documents should also be arranged in date order. The barrister will require a copy.
Court and Tribunal Work
The barrister should be provided with copies of the following:
It is best to prepare an index of these documents. You should prepare a list by date order of relevant events and documents, with a cross-reference to the statements, affidavits or statutory declarations (including annexures and exhibits), to show where and how each relates to the case. It is often helpful to write down your own thoughts about the matter, and the persons, events and documents which are likely to be relevant to the proceedings.
If the barrister is obliged to carry out work you could have done, such as sorting and listing documents, the cost of doing so might be included in the barrister's fees.
Usually it will be necessary to have a least one conference or meeting with the barrister before the proceedings. All documents should be forwarded to the barrister prior to the meeting to allow sufficient preparation time.
The 2007 Barristers Rule (Rules 73 to 80) presently define "barristers' work" ( which a barrister may undertake) and work which a barrister may not undertake ( which is more appropriately performed by a solicitor). The distinction is maintained in the public interest as reflecting the functions which barristers have traditionally performed and which they can undertake most cost-effectively and efficiently. The Rules may be varied from time to time. Click here to access the 2007 Barristers Rule.