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Jeremy Barnett instructed as independent general counsel

Jeremy Barnett is a practicing barrister, who has represented a number of clients where he has been ‘instructed as independent general counsel’,   which is a role that has previously only been open to large companies such as PLCs or Footse 100 companies. This is an example of ‘direct access’ by the Bar, who are now allowed to take instructions directly from companies or individuals in certain circumstances.

As a lawyer based in chambers in Leeds and London Jeremy often represents companies and individuals who come directly to see him, seeking legal advice in complex or cases of particular difficulty.  Following a telephone conversation, Jeremy will usualy see a potential client for an hour or so without charge, and will then discuss the alternatives that are open to suit the facts of the particular case. The options are that he can act :

  • alone on a direct access basis.
  • with a solicitor where he feels that this would benefit the client
  • where he is instructed as independent general counsel.

As ‘independent general counsel’ Jeremy is in effect the project manager of piece of litigation. Having been in practice for over 30 years, sitting as a Recorder in both criminal and civil jurisdictions and previously being a visiting professor in a mutli disciplinary research group, he has been able to provide a wide ranging service. Jeremy has assembled teams of solicitors and barristers who are specialist in various fields, and has continued to supervise the case, allowing the client to concentrate on continuing to run their own business.

The advantages of this role are.

  • Assistance in the selection of experienced solicitors and barristers.
  • Controlling of costs by an understanding of the appropriate market rate for the delivery of services.
  • Strategic advice to ensure a commercial benefit from the litigation
  • Extensive experience in document management and handling large datasets
  • Experience in dealing with expert evidence in specialist accounting and technical areas ( electronics, Information systems, business process, due diligence, explosives, packaging, carbon and other emerging technologies).

Jeremy  is presently instructed as independent general counsel in a high profile case where the client was unable to find experienced solicitors to represent him because of perceived conflicts of interest. Jeremy identified specialists including a firm of solicitors and leading counsel, and a team has been assembled to advise further.

To discuss these or other issues concerning direct access to a barrister,  Call 0844 2722322.

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