“An excellent lawyer, powerful advocate, skilful draftsman and feared opponent”

Marc Beaumont, a senior direct access barrister, is well known across the country as a pioneer – and in the view of many people, the pioneer – of the scheme known as Public Access.

Marc was the architect in 2000 of the original scheme of direct access to the Bar. Since 2004, he has become a recognised pioneer of and innovator in the field of direct access to the Bar and has built the leading on-line barrister direct access practice in England & Wales. He is now authorised to conduct litigation in his own right.

Marc has been acting for businesses and individuals on a direct basis since the advent of the Public Access scheme in 2004.

Despite his seniority, Marc’s fees are excellent value for money.

If you would like a fast appraisal of the suitability of your case for direct access,

  • Please Call: 01753 839321 or 07880 830890
  • or email mcb@windsorchambers.com with a (max) 500 word summary
  • or fill in and email the form below.

If Marc Beaumont is not available, please leave your telephone number and e-mail address with his Secretary.

Legal 500 Barrister 2020

Direct & Public Access barrister services and the conduct of litigation

If Marc accepts your case, he will act as your direct access barrister without the need for a solicitor, thereby saving you substantial sums in costs. 

Marc has the right to conduct litigation on a direct access basis in his own right. In High Court property and commercial litigation, Marc now conducts cases from start to finish using the much simplified e-filing procedures in the Rolls Building in London.  

Despite those costs savings, you will have access to:

    • over 34 years of experience as a barrister
    • expert legal and tactical advice
    • expertise in court advocacy in the High Court (Chancery and Queen’s Bench Divisions) and County Court and other tribunals
    • expertise in appellate advocacy in the Court of Appeal, Civil Division
    • skilled drafting of court documents, such as Skeleton Arguments and pleadings (Particulars of Claim and Defences)
    • expert drafting of pre-trial correspondence, including letters before claim and pre-action protocol letters
    • a skilled negotiator
    • an experienced mediator and arbitrator
    • a barrister who will not waste your money
    • a barrister who cares
    • a barrister who will fight hard if necessary
    • from April 2014, Marc has been authorised to conduct litigation and so can issue and serve proceedings for you and, in a suitable case, do any of the work that a solicitor can do, as well as provide the expertise of an experienced barrister.

Marc Beaumont has made Bar history in this field by:

      • moving a visionary Bar Council motion on direct access barristers in 2000, even before the OFT persuaded the Bar Council to adopt such a scheme for Barristers
      • lobbying successfully on the Bar Council for a scheme of direct access to the Bar in the face of firm opposition
      • conducting the first ever Public Access instruction at 9 am on the inaugural day of the scheme in 2004
      • conducting in 2005 the first ever Public Access case to reach the Court of Appeal.
      • being featured in the national press in 2006 as The Times, “Lawyer of the Week,” for having been the first barrister to conduct a case in the Court of Appeal with a client instructing the barrister under the Public Access scheme. See the article here.
      • campaigning and lobbying for a rule change to permit a PA barrister to correspond for his or her client – a key reform that came into force in April 2010.
      • in Kaur v ILEX [2011] EWCA Civ 1168, a landmark decision on the law of bias, Marc Beaumont continued in the case on a direct access basis, after his instructing solicitor died. Marc won the case in the Court of Appeal, defeating a Regulator represented by Queen’s Counsel.
      • In Paull v Paull [2018] EWHC 2520 (Ch), a much publicised decision in the press, an elderly father transferred his home to his son. The father subsequently brought a High Court claim alleging that the transfer was void for presumed undue influence. The claim was successful. Marc Beaumont exercised his conduct of litigation rights on direct access and conducted the case from start to finish, exercising all the functions of a barrister and solicitor. 

Marc acts on a Public Access basis in all the work categories listed on this website. Commercial, business, property and public/administrative/education law matters are well suited to the Public Access scheme.

Most professional disciplinary work can be conducted on direct access, as can Mediations and Arbitrations.

 

Marc has written and lectured extensively on direct access, most recently in the Solicitor’s Journal’s Bar focus for the 2014 Bar Conference, assessing the Bar’s direct access scheme at its 10th anniversary.

Fees and terms of engagement:

Much of Marc’s direct access barrister work is conducted on a fixed fee basis. For someone of his seniority, this provides cost-effective legal services for those who do not wish to pay for more than one lawyer.  In 2020,  Marc’s hourly rate for advisory and drafting work is £ 350 plus VAT per hour.  For court and tribunal work, it is £ 500 plus VAT per hour.  However,  fixed fees are offered in most direct access cases. The minimum conference fee is £ 1,000 plus VAT.  A minimum hearing fee is £ 1,250 plus VAT. Trial and hearing fees are based on a fixed fee for each court day that is booked.  Day 1 invariably includes a preparation element, so that it is a higher fixed fee than the fees charged for subsequent court days. The minimum, indicative fee for a Skeleton Argument, a pleading / statement of case,  a witness statement or a complicated letter, is £ 750 plus VAT.  The level of fees depends on variable factors such as complexity, the likely time commitment and the importance of the case, as well as the means of the client: every possible and reasonable effort is made to accommodate those who are genuinely in difficult circumstances and every year Marc carries out a significant amount of pro bono work. 

Fixed fees work to the advantage of the client far more often than they do for the barrister.  Client Care letters set out the fees agreed at the start of a professional retainer and save where, exceptionally, time does not permit, all further work is costed and fees are agreed before work is embarked upon. Fees are the subject of clear discussion and agreement by telephone and e-mail before any  engagement with the prospective client is undertaken. In all direct access cases, fees are agreed and paid before work commences. 

Court fees for issuing claims and applications are charged by and payable to HM Court Service.  

Time is not of the essence of a retainer unless this is expressly requested by the client and agreed in writing by Marc Beaumont. 

Guidance for direct access clients can be found here.

A detailed client care letter will be issued to clients at the inception of a direct access retainer.  

VAT details are available on request from an existing client.

We have been committed to price transparency and certainty since the direct access scheme started in 2004.  Please feel free to call Marc Beaumont directly on 01753 839321 to discuss your case in outline and to ask for a tailored fees estimate. 

Regulatory and compliance:

Marc Beaumont and Beaumont Legal Services Limited are authorised and regulated by the Bar Standards Board.  A client complaints policy is available on request.  A client has the right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman the procedure for which can be found here.  You can write to the Legal Ombudsman at: Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton. WV1 9WJ, telephone number: 0300 555 0333; Email: enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk.  More information about the Legal Ombudsman is available on their website: http://www.legalombudsman.org.uk/. A client must complain to the Legal Ombudsman either within 6 years of a barrister’s actions / failure to act, or no later than 3 years after the client should reasonably have known there were grounds to complain. The client must also complain to the Legal Ombudsman within 6 months of receiving the barrister’s final response to a complaint. Clients can complain to the Legal Ombudsman if they are unhappy with the final response to their complaint, or if their complaint has not been dealt with in 8 weeks.