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What Should I Do? Solicitor Or Direct Access Barrister?

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AlmondMilk | 15:46 Tue 22nd Sep 2020 | Law
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Hi,

I am looking for advice from anyone who has been in a similar position.

I am due in the crown court next month regarding an abh assault case and I have up to this point used a solicitor.

Now I just qualify for legal aid with them but with a hefty contribution amount. I made contact with a direct access barrister who qouted me a similar price to my contribution amount for legal aid.

I just want to know is it worth paying for a private barrister to for my case or go down the legal aid route with my current solicitor?

What will get me the best representation and give me the best chance?

I am aware that direct access barristers don't handle much of the paperwork so would this be an issue?

Thanks,

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When a case goes to Crown Court a barrister will always deal with the case (unless your solicitor has higher rights and can deal with CC cases). So if you stayed with your solicitor will instruct a barrister to represent you (think of a doctor referring a case to a consultant) and in that instance you will not have direct contact with the barrister - it will be through your solicitor. You may have meetings with your barrister but normally your solicitor will be present also. The majority will be received by your solicitor who will then forward it to the barrister to consider and prepare the case. A solicitor in CC matters basically does what the barrister says - in that if anything needs to be communicated to the CPS or Court the barrister may tell the solicitor what needs to be done and the solicitor will do it. If you pay a direct access barrister - you will need to find out if that will just be for representing you at Court and ultimately at Trial if you have pleaded NG - if not then you will have to deal with the correspondence and evidence that will be received from CPS and/or Court.

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