BSB to scrap continuing education for barristers

Regulator to scrap continuing education for barristers 

Barristers will no longer have to complete a mandatory continuing professional education, if proposals from the profession’s regulator go ahead, it was announced yesterday.

The Bar Standards Board launched a consultation process that would see barristers fall in line with recent reforms to the solicitors’ professional development regime.

The move could more or less destroy what was a thriving business in legal profession update courses because, if it gets the green light, solicitors and barristers would in the future be allowed to self-certify that they are abreast of recent professional developments.

A board statement said that the proposed future regime would mean that barristers would be “free to plan their own continuing professional development activities”. As part of that liberalised programme, barristers will not be subject to any compulsory activities or to a minimum number of hours. And, said the board, barristers “will no longer need to apply for an extension of time or a waiver from their CPD requirements”.

The BSB’s director of supervision, Oliver Hanmer, announced a series of consultation meetings on the proposals around the country that will run until the beginning of September.

Two years ago, the Solicitors Regulation Authority radically reformed its CPD rules, effectively dropping all mandatory requirements.

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