You don’t need to go to a barrister via a lawyer any more – in London or elsewhere in the U.K. – you can go DIRECT.
The main advantage to you is COST. You might have to do some work for it but that is inevitable.
The following Introduction to Direct Access to a Barrister is taken from the Bar Council guidance to Lay Clients ( that’s YOU )
THE PUBLIC ACCESS SCHEME GUIDANCE FOR LAY CLIENT Introduction The purpose of this Guide is to explain how the public access scheme works and to show how lay clients can use it to instruct barristers. What is public access? Members of the public may now go directly to a barrister without having to involve an instructing solicitor or other intermediary. In the past it was necessary for clients to use a solicitor or other recognised third party through whom the barrister would be instructed. Although the barrister’s role remains essentially the same, members of the public may instruct a barrister directly through the public access scheme. What are the advantages of the public access scheme? The main advantage of the public access scheme is that it could potentially save you money whilst giving you access to the Bar, since you would be paying for a barrister only instead of a barrister and solicitor. However, although the barrister would be able to deal with most aspects of the case, you could have to assist in some limited areas, generally with filing documents with the court. This is explained in more detail below. Is my case suitable for public access? Public access is available in all types of work that barristers can do, except for work funded out of legal aid. It is most suitable for reasonably straightforward cases. It is likely to be inappropriate in cases involving children. If you are not sure whether your case would be suitable for public access, you should contact an appropriate barrister (see below) of his or her clerk and seek an initial view. If the barrister considers that your case would benefit from the involvement of a solicitor, he or she will tell you so. A barrister may choose whether or not to take a public access case. The factors which he or she will take into account are discussed below. How do I make use of the public access scheme? For more information contact: the Professional Practice Team on 020 7611 1444 2 To use the scheme, you would have to instruct a barrister yourself. Further details of how to do this are given in this guidance.
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