Guide to becoming a Barrister 2018-2019

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Beyond the BPTC

NEW PRACTITIONER PROGRAMME After a barrister has completed pupillage and gained tenancy, either in self-employed practice or at the Employed Bar, he or she will become a ‘new practitioner’. In their first three years of practice, newly qualified practitioners are required to complete 45 hours of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) including at least nine hours of advocacy training and three hours of ethics training. The Inn’s New Practitioners programme, which is run twice each year in April and June, provides the highest possible standard of training for barristers in their first three years of tenancy.

NEW PRACTITIONERS’ ADVOCACY & ETHICS COURSE This course comprises an ethics evening at the Inn and an intensive advocacy training residential weekend. At the core of the weekend is a case allowing criminal and civil new practitioners to gain experience in handling expert witnesses played by accountants and medical doctors. The ethics session provides participants with the opportunity to discuss a range of ethical questions and related issues under the guidance of established practitioners and solicitors, and referring to the Code of Conduct. Together, the two parts of the Inn’s New Practitioners Programme provides the full requirement of advocacy and ethics hours.

“This was feedback born from experience and it was extremely useful. For me, one problem had always been that I spoke too quickly when on my feet. The unexpected advice I received from a criminal practitioner was simply to watch the judge’s pen. What I valued most from the Advocacy Weekend was not the prize but the feedback. I am now five months into practice and what I learned continues to help me do the best I can for those I represent. Each day in court poses fresh challenges but I am still watching the judge’s pen.” Christopher Sykes, Pupil at QEB Hollis Whiteman



On completion of the New Practitioners’ Programme, all practising barristers, whether employed or self-employed, are required to undertake continuing professional development (CPD) each year in order to keep their skills and knowledge up to date.

CPD events at the Inn include lectures by high profile speakers and practical advocacy exercises conducted by the Inn’s trainers. Past sessions have covered topics such as Vulnerable Witnesses, Serious Sexual Offences and Practical Guidance for Appellate Advocacy and Employment Law.

“The Practice Management Course is also very useful and deals with the practicalities of being selfemployed that are never mentioned elsewhere: how do you become VAT registered? What tax do you pay on your pupillage award? When do you have to register with HMRC as self-employed? What national insurance do you have to pay? This is a course where you should definitely take notes.” Reanne MacKenzie, Pupil at Quadrant Chambers 32

The Inner Temple Career Guide 2018–2019