CBA Release – 15.07.15
The CBA membership has voted in favour of no new work and ‘no returns’ to support solicitors’ action by 982 votes to 795 votes, equating to 55% in favour and 45% against. The executive will meet later today to determine the next steps in light of this result.
Francis Fitzgibbon has been elected to the position of Vice-Chair of the CBA.
The ballot question asked CBA members whether they would be prepared to refuse to accept new work with a representation order dated after 1st July 2015 and to refuse returned work (‘no returns’). The purpose of this action is to support solicitors in their ongoing action to reverse the 8.75% cut to LGFS fees imposed on 1st July
‘No returns’ is a withdrawal of goodwill by criminal barristers. In normal circumstances barristers travel to courts all over the country at very short notice to cover hearings in colleagues’ cases where diary clashes arise. Many of these hearings are not remunerated but they are fundamental to the efficient running of Crown Courts.
The CBA Executive has already circulated a protocol for ‘no returns’ in the light of the fact that some sets have already indicated a desire to adopt the ‘no returns’ policy. Given the seriousness of this action and in order to avoid professional conduct implications, there needs to be an opportunity to inform professional and lay clients, and to make representations to Court Managers and Judges that cases be rescheduled to avert clashes that can be identified in advance. The CBA Executive will consider how best this might be achieved at its meeting this evening.
The AGM will now be held at 18:30 today, to follow on from the meeting of the Executive.
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