Chimp barristers

It is 2030 and there have been no downsides from paying barristers peanuts.

Judges and barristers drew the spotlight in 2022 on many occasions: furious criminal barristers went on strike over pay; aggravated judges gave counsel a good old-fashioned bollocking from time to time; and barristers were urged to report rude judges. All rise for the courtroom drama highlights of the year.

Judges took centre stage when they opened a can of whoop-ass on lawyers. A judge scolded Bird & Bird and Ontier for acting "like schoolchildren in the playground" when dealing with each other in a case. While a Canadian judge lambasted a lawyer for making "sarcastic" and "scandalous" comments in his submissions.  

A judge berated Fieldfisher for its "continued failure" during a disclosure process, resulting in a trial being delayed for over two years. Baker McKenzie's fees were deemed to be excessive, by a judge, in a case where partners charged more than £800 an hour. And the Court of Appeal slammed Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton for charging £1,131 an hour in a competition dispute.

Parties to proceedings also drew the ire of judges. A bemused Singapore High Court judge poured scorn on a pair of bickering influencers - and their lawyers - after one sued the other for suggesting she cheated on her fiancee at her own wedding. A man who told a District Judge to "get fucked" was given a suspended prison sentence for contempt of court. And a woman who brought a claim stating that her "rightful name" is Jesus Christ, was warned by a judge that she risked having a restraint order made against her.

Prospective lawyers who cheated in their exams (including a paper on ethics) were shamed by a judge in Singapore. And one judge found himself on the receiving end of a ticking-off when he was rebuked by the Lord Chancellor for presiding over a court hearing in his car.

The Criminal Bar Association slammed "insufficient" pay rises offered by the government, and criminal barristers said they would refuse 'returns' work. They then went on strike due to the abject pay, which escalated into "uninterrupted strike action". The relationship between the Criminal Bar and the government soured further when QCs slammed Dominic Raab and the Lord Chief Justice for their "misleading" and "intimidating" responses to the strike.

A barrister went and got his guitar, and wrote a song ridiculing the government. But the strike finally came to an end, provoking dismay among junior barristers who wanted to reject the government's deal.

There was the odd brouhaha involving barristers. A farting barrister claimed he was harassed at work when a colleague asked him to stop passing wind in the office, but lost his discrimination case against the Crown Prosecution Service. A male barrister was reprimanded for describing a female legal executive as a "hysterical woman", lost his appeal in the High Court. And the Bar Standards Board apologised to human rights barrister Dinah Rose KC after investigating her and sending its report to a complainant without her knowledge.

In other news at the Bar, the Lord Chief Justice said judges will receive training to ensure they don't behave inappropriately, following a review which revealed bullying, discrimination and harassment. And he urged barristers to report rude judges, stating that it wouldn't be held against them. Hmmmm. 

The Bar Council revealed that female barristers are paid around 34% less than their male peers. 

And the year came to a close with the bombshell that the CEO of the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal resigned, following the SDT's admission that it is being booted from its current premises, which it had tried to spin as an "exciting opportunity".

Check out the rest of the 2022 review:

Firm fun


Heroes and villains

Showbiz, show-offs and Bonkers Websites


Politics, war, religion, race, and sex 

Tip Off ROF


Anonymous 24 December 22 05:44

The Bar Council found that barristers of different seniority are paid differently, not that female barristers are paid 34% less than their male peers.

Related News