Due to changes in the law in 2004, the general public who wish to seek legal advice or representation of any kind can now go directly to a barrister avoiding the need to go to a solicitor. This process has been called Direct Access or Public Access. It reflects the changing nature of the British legal profession and the legal system overall. Direct Access is designed to not only connect member of the public with an immediate need of expertise to a specialist barrister but it will also enable the public to save considerable financial and administrative expenses they would incur from contacting a solicitor.
The role of the barrister in the Direct Access process remains unchanged as it would be if they were approached by a solicitor or another party. A Direct Access Barrister will continue to offer you advice on your legal status and rights. They will negotiate on your behalf attend hearings and investigative interviews, draft and send documents for you while also representing you in court, tribunals or mediations. Due to the nature of a barristers work there are still some cases and situations in which a solicitor will need to be instructed. However, for most of the cases the Direct Access scheme will apply.
The Bar Councils Website provides more information on a range of professional services which are offered under the Direct Access Scheme.
The Barristers at Kings View Chambers have extensive experience in representing the public through the Direct Access scheme and are on hand to meet your needs or should you have any advice on the scheme.