In October 2010, the BSB introduced new requirements in respect of chambers complaints handling. The BSB has received a large number of queries from chambers expressing concern about the impracticality of complying with these arrangements.
As a result, the BSB met with representatives of the Legal Services Board in December 2010 to discuss alternative means of ensuring that the lay client is aware of their right to complain to chambers whilst at the same time not introducing requirements which place a disproportionate burden on chambers.
Following the meeting, the BSB has worked on revised arrangements for notifying the lay client of their right to complain. These arrangements will be discussed by the Board in February and then considered by the Specialist Bar Associations in March before being put before the Board for fi nal approval in April. Once approved, chambers will be provided with details of the new arrangements and guidance on how they should operate in practice. In the meantime, chambers should take all reasonable steps to ensure that the lay client is informed of their right to complain.