New BSB Handbook and entity regulation

We have launched a consultation on a new Code of Conduct for barristers, which includes proposals for regulating new types of business structure. The new Code of Conduct, to be known as the BSB Handbook, is designed to be easier to navigate so that barristers and, above all, their clients can readily see what is expected from barristers in relation to:
  • the court
  • the client
  • the regulator
  • their practice, and
  • their behaviour towards others.

We are also set to introduce a new risk based approach to supervision and enforcement, where energy and resources will focus on the greatest areas of risk and regulatory issues will be resolved through an enhanced use of supervision and monitoring to promote compliance, with only more serious cases of breach being dealt with by way of disciplinary action.

The consultation provides more details about our plans to expand the range of business structures available at the Bar. Whilst many barristers will choose to continue to practice under the traditional self-employed referral model, others may wish to form firms or companies, either for all of their work or, for example, to service work under a particular contract. Under these proposals they will be able to apply to us to regulate that entity. We intend to continue to be a niche regulator, specialising in advocacy focussed businesses.

You can read the consultation on our website: