Bar Council research sheds light on average pay trends

New research from the Bar Council suggests that average pay levels at the Bar are beginning to brush £70,000 – and that half of the UK’s highest earners work in-house.

The Council’s report revealed that the average salary at the Bar sits at approximately £69,446.  

50 per cent of the highest earners told the Council’s ‘Snapshot Report’ survey that they worked in-house, while 16 per cent of respondents claimed that they took home more than £100,000 per annum.

Six per cent added that they typically earned in excess of £150,000.

Commenting on the statistics, Chantal-Aimée Doerries QC, Chair of the Bar, said: “Barristers have a lot to contribute both in employed and self-employed practice.

“Our members play a critical and valuable role inside public bodies, companies, charities and other organisations where the skills and values which they bring as members of the bar can be invaluable to employers”.

However, a separate study carried out by the Bar Council this month revealed that an increasing number of employed Barristers fear that the quality of their work is “unrecognised”.

The majority who had transferred to the employed Bar after beginning their career at the self-employed Bar said that they believed they were viewed as “less capable, or indeed less qualified” following their transfer.

Employed Barristers are now calling for greater recognition of their abilities, after the survey revealed that many felt their role was “often confused with that of a solicitor”.

Michael Jennings, chair of the Bar Council’s employed barristers’ committee, said: “The accusatory finger is often pointed at the self-employed Bar, which is blamed for maintaining historic misconceptions about the employed Bar. There may be some truth in that, but the employed Bar is equally culpable.”

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