The Bar Standards Board (BSB) today (7 December) announced it will launch a pilot scheme to monitor whether chambers are complying with the bar code of conduct.
The pilot, which is due to launch in April next year, is the forerunner to the quality assurance scheme (QAS) that is currently being put in place to provide a full compliance programme.
The trial scheme, which will involve selected chambers testing procedures for gathering and assessing information on compliance with the code, will run for two years before QAS, which comes into force in early 2010, is implemented.
BSB chair Ruth Evans said it is essential that the board can show systematically that chambers are complying with the requirements of the code.
Evans said: "We are keen to work with the profession on the development of our quality assurance framework to ensure that our approach is not over burdensome but, at the same time, is proportionate to the risk of non-compliance and sufficiently robust to carry the confidence of consumers."