How To Become A Queen’s Counsel In The Uk
The title of Queen’s Counsel, often called QC, is an exceptional honor. It is also a globally recognised sign of merit in the legal profession. Barrister Michael Wolkind has been a QC for many years now.
Sometimes becoming a QC is referred to as “taking the silk.” This is because a QC gets to wear special robes in court. They also benefit from being able to charge more in fees. They get better instructions for the most complex cases and of course, have a seat in front of regular barristers in a court of law.
There are many reasons for barristers to want to get a chance at this honor, so how is it done? It’s very competitive, and only a handful of barristers and even fewer solicitors are ever considered, much less approved for this honor.
The process has improved in the last decade. In the old days, QCs were approved in secret meetings, so there were lots of questions about how fair the process is. These days, the process is much more transparent, but it’s still tough to get approved.
These days, a special panel considers each applicant against a framework that contains five legal competency areas. These areas of the law include:
* Understanding and using laws
* Both oral and written advocacy
* Ability to work well with other people
* Professional integrity
The panel that does the selections is composed of 10 panelists. These include solicitors, barristers, retired judges, and a person who is not a lawyer.
To make their decision, these people review a variety of different assessments from colleagues, clients, and judges. To earn the title of QC, an applicant has to demonstrate merit in every area. After the panel reviews this initial material, they select some of the applicants in for an interview. Then they make their final decision upon who will get an appointment as a QC.
The process to get considered is quite grueling. Applicants have to explain how they are qualified within strict word counts on an official form. In addition, there are a few different fees that applicants must pay.
This describes some of the fees:
* Initial applicant’s fee: £1,800
* Appointment fee: £3,000
Some applicants may have these fees paid by their employers. Of course, self-employed people will generally have to fund the fees out of their own pockets.