The Bar Standards Board (BSB) has welcomed news from the Bar Tribunals and Adjudication Service (BTAS) that its new sanctions guidance will come into play on 1 January 2022.
The guidance is used by disciplinary tribunals and the BSB’s independent decision-making body in deciding what sanctions to impose in cases of proven professional misconduct by barristers in England and Wales.
It has been the subject of review and consultation by BTAS throughout this year, however.
The revised guidance was developed by a group that is led by chair of the Tribunals, HHJ Jonathan Carroll, and includes the registrar of BTAS, lay and barrister members of the BTAS Disciplinary Tribunal panel, the BSB’s director of Legal and Enforcement and the head of Investigations and Enforcement at the BSB.
The new guidance is set to introduce revised sanction ranges for tribunals to impose across different types of misconduct.
The revisions reportedly reflect the “wide-ranging” views that were received during the consultations, both from those in the legal profession and from those representing the public.
BSB director-general, Mark Neale, said: “We welcome the introduction of the new Sanctions Guidance and the authority it gives to Disciplinary Tribunals to impose tougher sanctions in cases involving a wide range of professional misconduct.
“I particularly welcome the increased sanctions for cases involving sexual harassment which I hope will send a clear message that such conduct is completely unacceptable.”