Direct Professional Access

The Bar of Northern Ireland provides direct access to barristers for Professional Bodies which have been approved by the Bar Council.

What is Direct Professional Access?

Barristers can provide specialist legal advice directly to certain Professional Bodies without the need for a solicitor intermediary, reducing costs and saving time. For example, if you have a planning law query or need advice and assistance drafting regulations, working directly with a barrister who is an expert in that area and flexible in their working practices is likely to be more cost-effective.

Click here to contact us for information on how to become an approved body for Professional Access.

In using Direct Professional Access, the fundamental features which must always be noted are the best interests and the well-being of the client. If, for example, a barrister concludes that the interests of the client are best served by the involvement of a solicitor, then a solicitor must be retained by the member of the professional body who had originally sought to use Direct Professional Access.

Instructing a Barrister through Direct Professional Access

When asked to provide written advice a barrister should be sent adequate instructions. These instructions should include background details of the nature of the issue and the advice required. Solicitors will be familiar with the steps involved in briefing a barrister to appear in Court. Other professionals wishing to instruct to appear before a tribunal should send instructions which will include a case introduction, witness statements and all other material documentation.

In all circumstances a pre-hearing consultation should be arranged to ensure that the case issues can be fully discussed.

Contact for more information about Direct Professional Access.