Direct Access.

The Bar Council describes barristers as "specialist legal advisers and court room advocates. They are independent, objective and trained to advise clients on the strengths and weaknesses of their case. They have specialist knowledge and experience in and out of court, which can make a substantial difference to the outcome of a case."

There are two ways that you can instruct a barrister:

  • If you have a solicitor who is also working on your legal problem, they will instruct a barrister on your behalf; or
  • You can go directly to a barrister yourself if they are a Direct Access barrister.

Several of Crucible's barristers are authorised to accept instructions under the Direct Access, or Public Access, scheme. Instructing a barrister directly could save you time and money. Full details about Direct Access are available on the Bar Council’s and Bar Standards Board’s websites.

Crucible's barristers are qualified to:

  • provide you with expert legal advice about the merits and potential outcomes of your case;
  • assist you with drafting correspondence;
  • help to draft statements from litigants and witnesses;
  • draft formal court documents;
  • advise you on suitable experts and draft instructions to expert witnesses;
  • offer you advice on the next steps to be taken in proceedings;
  • assist you in trying to resolve your case; and
  • represent you in court.

Most barristers who offer Direct Access do not offer to conduct litigation. "Conducting litigation" includes filing documents at court and serving documents on others. "Serving documents" on another person means a formal handing over those documents to them. That means that the responsibility for the day to day management of your case will remain with you.

Crucible's barristers are not able to undertake any publicly funded ("legal aid") work under the Direct Access scheme. If you think that you may be eligible for public funding, you can check by completing the Legal Aid Eligibility Calculator. If you are eligible for legal aid but would prefer to instruct one of our barrister directly, you can do so on a privately funded basis.

Our barristers provide their services either on an hourly rate basis or by agreeing a fixed fee. Our barristers fees will vary depending upon the nature and complexity of your case and the seniority of your chosen barrister. Please see details of our members' fees. Our clerks would be happy to provide you with a quotation.

All of our barristers hold professional indemnity insurance provided by the Bar Mutual Indemnity Fund.

Any Public Access client wishing to complain about the service they have received should contact the barrister they instructed directly, requesting a copy of Crucible's complaints policy. Guidance can be found on the Legal Ombudsman website

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