Barristers given advice on what to do if they are bullied by judges

BARRISTERS are being given advice on what to do if they are bullied by judges.

The guide says only a handful of top justices browbeat the lawyers.

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The Bar Council is giving barristers advice on what to do if they are bullied by judges[/caption]

But their targets — who train for at least five years — can feel helpless.

The Bar Council is now looking at setting up a whistleblower hotline.

The guidance, sent to all barristers in England and Wales, says: “Bullying of barristers is always unacceptable.

“When bullying by judges occurs it presents additional challenges.

“Those who are a target may feel unable, or particularly reluctant, to do anything about it, even though the impact may be particularly acute.

“At the same time, judges have an important independent constitutional status and are removable from office only for good reason.”

It adds: “The Bar Council recognises the right approach to dealing with judicial bullying presents difficulties and complications that do not apply in other contexts.”

The guide tells  briefs to keep notes and ask for advice — but says the worst incidents should be reported.

Council boss Richard Atkins QC adds that only a few  judges “engage in bullying” but it must never be excused.

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