Process when Counsel is instructed on opposite sides of the same case:

  • At the outset of litigation there may be a time when rival parties will not want the fact that they have taken legal advice to be known otherwise than to their advisers.
  • In such circumstances Counsel will ensure that the clerks are aware of this fact and will inform his/her clerk if the position changes.
  • If appropriate or practicable, both Counsel will be informed of each other’s involvement.
  • If both Counsel have been informed, both sets of solicitors should be informed that they have instructed counsel in the same Chambers.
  • Clerks will inform solicitors of the possible conflict of interest and of Chambers’ practice in such circumstances; this is to enable the client to decide if he/she wishes to continue to instruct the barrister in question.
  • Clerks and solicitors will discuss and consider whether any variation of usual Chambers’ practice is necessary in the particular circumstances.
  • Every effort will be made to accommodate any reasonable request made by an instructing solicitor for special measures to be taken.


  • Consideration will be given to providing separate designated clerking where members appear against each other.
  • Clerks will inform Instructing Solicitors of who is the relevant clerk(s) designated to dealing with their case in.
  • The clerks responsible will communicate this information with the rest of the clerking team.


  • When papers are received for a particular barrister, the clerks will ensure that they have been securely stored either in the barrister’s pigeon hole within the clerks’ room or locked in the basement vault to ensure confidentiality. However, wherever practicable, papers delivered to a particular barrister will be placed in his/her room in an envelope, or storage file/box, and the barrister informed.
  • A record of the receipt of papers will be made on the Chambers’ Management System. A confirmation email acknowledging receipt will be sent to the instructing solicitor.
  • Care will be taken by the barrister to ensure papers are kept securely within their room (i.e. in a locked cupboard when not in use) or locked in a safe to ensure confidentiality.
  • A record will be made on the Chambers’ Management System confirming the date and method used for either the return to instructing solicitors, or the secure destruction of, confidential papers.