Chair for Independent Decision-Making Body

Job title: Chair for Independent Decision-Making Body
Rate: £308 per day (£154 for half a day)
Location: Hybrid (from time to time, attend meetings/training in person in London for which reasonable expenses will be paid)
Organisation: The Bar Standards Board

The Bar Standards Board (BSB), the independent regulatory body for barristers in England and Wales, is seeking a new Chair for its Independent Decision-Making Body. We are seeking a senior leader with the skills to lead this body and to support us in the continuing modernisation of our enforcement processes.

The BSB regulates barristers and specialised legal services businesses in England and Wales in the public interest. Our statutory objectives are set out in the Legal Services Act 2007 and in pursuit of those objectives our duties include:

  • setting education and training requirements;
  • setting standards;
  • authorising organisations;
  • monitoring the service provided; and
  • considering reports about conduct.

The Independent Decision-Making Body (IDB) is a non-executive body responsible for taking regulatory decisions that require independent input and has been operating since October 2019. It consists of a pool of suitably qualified decision makers from which panels of lay and barrister members are formed to take decisions on individual cases – panels of five are used for enforcement cases and panels of three are used for appeals against authorisation decisions. Most of the decisions for which the IDB is responsible are in relation to whether enforcement action should be taken where breaches of the professional obligations, as set out in the BSB Handbook, may have occurred.  However, the IDB is also responsible for, amongst other things, taking decisions in relation to appeals against executive decisions not to grant waivers from the Handbook requirements or decisions not to authorise or license a body to provide legal services.

The work of all IDB members (including the Chair) includes preparing for, attending and/or chairing Panel meetings, attending training sessions as required and ensuring that they stay up to date with issues related to the regulation of the Bar. The Chair of the IDB is also responsible (in conjunction with the Vice Chair) for providing leadership of the IDB which includes: appraisals of members, giving feedback to members where issues are identified, hosting quarterly training sessions, meeting quarterly with senior staff involved in operational delivery, contributing to the quarterly newsletter, and approving and presenting the IDB’s annual report to the Board. The Chair also has the power to impose immediate interim suspensions or disqualifications on any applicable person.

We welcome applications from practising barristers and lay people, both executive and non-executive. Lay members cannot be (or ever have been) barristers or solicitors, as defined in paragraph 2(4) of Schedule 1 of the Legal Services Act 2007.

Appointments will be for an initial period of up to three years, potentially renewable for a further three-year term, subject to satisfactory appraisal on completion of 18 months’ and three years’ service.

Remuneration for all members of the IDB is paid at a flat rate of £308 per day or £154 per half day (plus VAT, if relevant) – the fee covers both attendance at meetings and preparation time.

We welcome applications from those located outside London. Panel members can attend meetings remotely although there is an expectation that the Chair will, from time to time, attend meetings/training in person in London for which reasonable expenses will be paid.

After reading the Information Pack and Supporting Details Form, candidates should provide a covering letter outlining how they meet the competencies required for the position, together with a CV. Please also complete the Equality and Diversity Monitoring Form.

We welcome applications from all people who meet the role requirements regardless of background and particularly encourage those from groups that are currently underrepresented in our independent decision-making processes such as people from minority ethnic groups, people who are LGBTQ+, and people with disabilities.

The Bar Standards Board is “Disability Confident”. Candidates with a disability who meet the essential criteria for this role will be guaranteed an interview under this scheme.

If you have any queries, please contact Rebecca Forbes, Head of Governance and Corporate Services, in the first instance:

Please send completed applications to:

Closing date for applications:  9am Monday 27 March 2023.

Interviews will take place in London on Wednesday 19 April 2023.  The date may change, including the possible addition of other dates, depending on interview panel and applicant availability.

The successful candidate will be required to complete mandatory training on taking up appointment.

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