Action 1: establish a preferred trial counsel list

Action 1: establish a preferred trial counsel list

We will establish a preferred list of trial barristers for legally aided accused.

Why we will establish a list

We believe establishing a preferred list of trial counsel barristers is the most efficient and effective way to ensure greater accountability around briefing decisions such that competent counsel represent legal aid clients and we can ensure the promotion of a diverse range of skilled barristers being briefed in legally aided work.

What happens next

We have established a list of preferred barristers who can be briefed for legally aided trials. The Criminal Trial Preferred Barrister List became operational in July 2015.

Under the scheme solicitors can still apply to brief barristers who are not on the Criminal Trial Preferred Barrister List for a standard criminal trial (a criminal trial that is likely to last 15 days or less). However, they need to seek specific approval first and explain why that advocate is suitable for a particular trial. Factors we may consider include client needs, case type and complexity, skills, experience and availability of a preferred barrister.

See Criminal Trial Preferred Barrister List for further details about the list, entry requirements and how to brief barristers for trials.