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The Bar must reassess the £127,000 dream

The profession might pay a heavy price if it fails to meet the financial needs of aspiring barristers, writes Matthew Rogers

13 June 2016

The Bar Council chairman, Chantal-Aimée Doerries QC, recently told the Guardian that students starting university this year may have to spend up to £127,000 to qualify as a barrister. Training costs
are a major challenge for a profession often criticised
for its lack of diversity and social mobility.

To make matters worse,
cuts to legal aid in the criminal and family sectors and the rise in court fees have led to an increase of self-representation, which has left young barristers with less work and, in turn, made student debts more difficult to pay off.

In 2014, the Bar Standards Board (BSB) launched Future Bar Training, a programme intent on reforming the current training regime to create a more flexible system that will attract a more diverse cohort of young lawyers equipped for a changing market and with the ability meet the expectations ...

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