Briefing Barristers

A barrister is a specialist advocate with deep expertise in the law, legal strategy and dispute resolution.

Barristers are most commonly briefed by a solicitor on behalf of a client.

However, a barrister can be briefed ‘directly’ (ie directly by the client, not by the client’s solicitor) in certain circumstances.

Criminal Matters: A barrister can be briefed directly in a criminal proceeding in the Magistrates' Courts.

Commercial/Civil Matters: A barrister can be briefed directly in civil matters:

  • by in-house corporate counsel with a current practising certificate;
  • by a solicitor or officer of a government department or agency whose usual duties include engaging lawyers; and
  • by a member of the public. 

A barrister can be arranged to discuss your matter (in some circumstances without cost for up to one hour). 

A barrister is bound by professional conduct rules. In accepting direct briefs, a barrister is bound by the Legal Profession Uniform Conduct (Barristers) Rules 2015 and in particular, rules 11, 13, 16, 21, 22 and 101(k). A copy of those rules can be found here.

Circumstances may require a client to retain an instructing solicitor, including at short notice.


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Excellent facilities in a bright and roomy environment. The McPhee Mediation Centre has been designed to create an environment conducive to obtaining successful mediation results. Its configuration allows you to bring parties together for mediation and then separate them from private consultation as required.


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