Direct Access Services

Newcastle, Durham, Gateshead, Tyneside, Teesside, Sunderland, Northumberland & North East areas, Carlisle, Cumbria, Teesside, Darlington, Middlesbrough, York, Leeds, North Yorkshire

Dr John Brown is a Direct Access Barrister who is authorised by the Bar Standards Board to undertake Litigation. All Direct Access Services are provided by John and almost all of the time they will be on a fixed fee basis (so giving you certainty on costs). 

There are clear benefits to members of the General Public or Businesses in instructing a Barrister directly under Direct Access, namely: you will save money, as you’ll only be paying for one lawyer (i.e. John Brown – as opposed to a firm of Solicitors + a Barrister) and you will also be able to deal directly with a specialist Barrister throughout your case, whereas if you instruct a firm of solicitors you may speak to a different person every time you call. 

If your case is likely to go to a Court or Tribunal hearing, you are bound to be more comfortable about matters if the person who has prepared your case will also be representing you at the hearing – so giving you continuity.

You will be able to discuss the matter directly with John by phone and email. This means that there is increased continuity as your case will be handled by one person, not by a firm of Solicitors, who will have various people meet or speak with you to understand your case and will then brief a Barrister just for the court hearings. This means that on most occasions you will only meet your Barrister less than 1 hour before the hearing starts.

John will not charge you anymore to speak to him or have him answer emails whilst your matter continues (unlike your average high street firm of solicitors), as long as the level of contact is not unreasonably excessive. 

It is the case also that if you have a number of preparatory hearings before a final hearing, your solicitors may brief a different Barrister for each hearing, but in most cases you will not know who may actually represent you at the final hearing.

Through Direct Access, John can offer you about 90% of the legal services you can obtain from a High Street firm of Solicitors (obvious exclusions are: No Win No Fee Injury Claims, Property Purchases and Conveyancing, and any Legal Services where you require Legal Aid).

Members of the public and owners of businesses have been able from around 2004 to go directly to a barrister without having to involve an instructing solicitor or any other intermediary

In the past, clients could only come to the Bar for advice through an instructing solicitor but now business owners and members of the public can instruct a barrister directly through the ‘public access scheme’.

If fees are to be on an agreed hourly rate, John will always beat any competitors hourly rate which you have been provided with and he will agree an initial number of hours of work to be undertaken and will need a retainer to enable him to commence work for you.

John will agree to a free initial phone, skype or zoom consultation, to enable him to understand if your case is suitable to be taken on under Direct Access, (this would not constitute legal advice until he has been formally instructed).

He is also happy to put you in touch with clients who are willing to recommend his services and tell you how they found John to be when they instructed him as their lawyer


John was called to the Bar in 2000. He is a Direct Access/Public Access Barrister authorised to undertake litigation and his registered number with the Bar Council is 40983. As John is a Direct Access Barrister this means he can take cases direct from the General Public and from Businesses as well as accepting briefs from Solicitors.

You can click HERE to find all the areas of law which John can assist you in.

John can offer his services cheaper than any High Street firm of Solicitors. If you bring in a quote from a firm of Solicitors. John will guarantee to beat the quote by at least 35%

Direct Access work will require payment in advance for all work undertaken. John can accept card payments from all credit and debit cards (except American Express) or you can make payment by bank transfer.

John is originally from the NE of Scotland and joined the RAF aged 17 and he spent 12 years in the RAF and then went to university in Aberdeen and then studied for the Bar in London. He is a member of Lincolns Inn.  John was the first one in his family to study at University. He qualified as a Barrister in 2000.

John holds a PhD in International Conflict Resolution and Arbitration from studying in the USA. He has experience of working in the Far East, having worked as a Lawyer in Bangkok, Thailand for 3 years. He still has a number of contacts in the Far East and this means he can also assist clients with family members in custody in the Far East who may face problems when deported back to the UK, or clients seeking to develop business interests in the Far East.

If you need legal aid John is unable to offer you those services. You will need to contact a firm of Solicitors who hold a legal aid contract in the specific area of law. 

Basic Terms

John is required to carry out identification procedures on Direct Access clients and will require some proof of your identity e.g. driving licence and a recent utility bill with current address.

If you are acting on behalf of a company, you will be required to produce copy of the Certificate of Incorporation along with evidence showing that you are authorised to act on behalf of that company.

If a fee is agreed for a hearing, the fee must be paid at least 48 hours prior to the hearing otherwise I will not be liable to attend the hearing for you. I base my fees on what period the court says a hearing should last for and of course I clear my diary for your hearing, so if a hearing finishes early, e.g it is for a full day but finishes in 1/2 a day or is for 2 days and finishes in 1 day, you will not be eligible for as refund. The only refund i will provide is if a hearing is adjourned within 30 minutes of the court start time upon arrival at court. In that case I will charge £250 for my time and will carry the balance over for the adjourned hearing date. 

If you are quoted a fee for a set piece of work that means the work should be completed within a reasonable time and John should not be chasing you for information to let him complete the agreed work. If despite chasing you, information needed to allow John to complete the work is not forthcoming,  John will be entitled to terminate the services forthwith and you will have no entitlement to be refunded for any fees already paid. John will also be entitled to inform the other side that he is “off the record” and that they should deal with you directly. 

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