Growing gulf between Irish and English Bars

Can the Legal Services Bill address the numerous and widening differences between the English and Irish Bars, asks Darragh Connell?

27th January, 2013
The Legal Services Bill will permit Irish barristers to establish a practice with other barristers. Photo: Alamy

Many Irish barristers are members of the English Bar, and vice-versa. For instance, the incoming chairwoman of the English Bar Council, Maura McGowan QC, has been called to the Bar in both jurisdictions. In 2011, 30 of the 1,494 lawyers called to the English Bar described themselves as Irish, while more than half of the 29 external members of the Irish Bar are English.

But despite the links, there are increasing differences between the way barristers practise in Ireland...

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