Contractual terms

The Code of Conduct provides that barristers are obliged under the Cab Rank Rule to accept instructions which are offered either (a) on the Standard Contractual Terms for the Supply of Legal Services to Authorised Persons annexed to the Code (“the Bar Council Terms”) or (b) on terms which a barrister or the barrister’s chambers have published as the barrister’s standard terms of work.

At One Essex Court the barristers’ published standard terms of work are the terms agreed between The Commercial Bar Association (Combar) and the City of London Law Society (“the Combar/CLLS Terms”) on Payment Basis A.

Accordingly, barristers at One Essex Court are obliged under the Cab Rank Rule to accept instructions which are offered (a) on the Bar Council Terms or (b) on the current Combar/CLLS Terms on Payment Basis A.

Barristers at One Essex Court will, of course, consider alternative terms of engagement, or variations to the published Terms; but they are not obliged under the Cab Rank Rule to accept instructions on such terms.  It should also be noted that barristers at One Essex Court will not be applying the new contractual terms as a matter of routine to each and every new instruction, so neither the Bar Council Terms nor the Combar/CLLS Terms should be viewed as default terms.

Where the Combar/CLLS Terms are required in relation to a barrister’s services, these can be activated by the solicitor and the barrister completing the front sheet of the Terms and signing it.  Alternatively, it may be achieved by an email exchange confirming that the barrister and the solicitor intend to be bound by a contract incorporating the Terms, and setting out the information required by the front sheet of the Terms, together with any amendments agreed.  A barrister's clerk has authority for these purposes to enter into an agreement incorporating the Terms on behalf of a barrister.

If you have any questions or queries in relation to the implementation or application of these terms, then please contact Darren Burrows, the Senior Clerk, on +44 (0)20 7583 2000 or via e-mail to dburrows@oeclaw.co.uk  Additional guidance issued by COMBAR and CLLS is available here.

The Agreement for the Supply of Legal Services by a Barrister in a Commercial Case (the current Combar CLLS Barrister's Terms) can be downloaded here. The Bar Council terms can be downloaded here.