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Postby miner » Wed Feb 12, 2014 1:23 am

[moved from viewtopic.php?f=21&t=3078&p=39749#p39742 by atticus]

What an excellent speech from this lass Hannah Evans, who has conquered the odds against her becoming a barrister and now finds herself in an almost impossible financial position.

I reckon that too many wannabe barristers have naively seen becoming a barrister as the quickest way to the Porsche or other trappings. The standards of the profession, in my view, are woefully inadequate.

From my limited experience in Court with 3 barristers - 2 junior barristers and one QC, I have failed to be impressed by the professional standards of any and all of them:

One Junior barrister was just plain insulting and rude in Court, even in my opinion to the Judge who appeared to react (or rather not react) as if this was the norm for a barrister. In the waiting room afterwards, the obnoxious "four-letter man" proceeded to goad and insult me as if he was the Lord God Almighty and I was supposed to just take his insults. He got quite a nasty shock when I reacted to him very stridently but without being rude. I subsequently reported his conduct to the BSB, who had it confirmed to them by the junior solicitor who was present in the room that the words the barrister used to insult me were exactly as I had quoted to the BSB in my Report.

Although the barrister's conduct clearly breached the BSB's rules, the BSB took no action against him, merely stating in their Report that he should have chosen his words better if he had wished to address me. They acknowledged that I had a right to have felt insulted by his words.

If the BSB, like the SRA, merely sits on its fat useless arse and does nothing when their rules have been breached, or dishonestly claim there has been no breach of them when there clearly has been, the standards of barristering simply fall because the Regulator is not doing a proper job.

The second junior barrister I experienced simply hadn't done his homework on the case, and made a complete fool of himself in front of the judge, who disposed of each of his bogus points by asking him for valid legal arguments for them - which of course the idiot barrister couldn't provide him with. The tosser even tried to tell the judge he had no authority to hear the case.

The third was the QC who lied to the Court over a number of issues, subsequently dishonestly claiming that the reason was that he had been "confused". He then chose to appear at a subsequent Costs Hearing, sat there like dead sheep doing and saying practically nothing and when the Costs Master looked at his charges he snapped "I am not allowing any of those fees. This matter does not call for the services of ANY barrister".

At another Costs hearing, under a different Costs judge, I made representations suggesting that the services of a barrister - the same QC - had not been required for the Hearing to which the claimed costs related, and the Costs Master, obviously somewhat irritated, stated that it had not been appropriate to engage the services of ANY barrister, even a junior barrister, for what he referred to as a simple probate matter in the Family Court, stating also that the level of representation appropriate was that of a junior solicitor, and no greater. He dismissed the costs claimed for the QC, and allowed only the costs equating to a junior solicitor.

So the QC had all of his costs - of some £10,000 or more - disallowed by 2 different Costs Judges. However, he would still have been paid by his instructing solicitor's clients. It was quite iniquitous that the QC took on representing a case which did not require ANY barrister, even a junior one.

My experiences suggest that the Bar Council / BSB and its members need to clean up their mucky little act, and that the BSB needs to enforce its own rules with some teeth, and start acting as an effective Regulator instead of as the limp, useless body that it has let itself become which basically acts to protect barristers.

I'd venture to suggest that the situation described by Hannah Evans is reflective of there being too many barristers around, too many of them being unfit to practise as barristers and too many of them failing to act honestly in taking on work which does not require a barrister and expecting to be paid barrister's rates for such non-existent "work". Basically, the profession has a grossly overrated opinion of its place and status in society.

Hannah comes over as a genuine person whose personal difficult financial situation in my view has been created by the Bar Council itself via its inadequate admission policies and the abject failure of its useless appendage, the Bar Standards Board, to actually regulate the profession properly.
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Re: Barristers

Postby Millbrook2 » Wed Feb 12, 2014 6:49 pm

So the first barrister was admonished for his/her choice of words - can't see if that happened often it would help their career.

In the other 2 cases the costs were not allowed so the system worked. presumably the barristers were instructed by a solicitor so hardly their fault for taking on the work and asking for costs.

can't comment on the 'lies' but in the other instances I cannot see the source of your bile.
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