Budgeting measures mean Barristers face a 5% increase in the cost of practising. Here’s how outsourcing legal dictation can offset the hike.

The Bar Council is looking to raise an extra £365,000 next year in order to balance its budget. The 5% increase would see QCs paying a core fee of £1,026, while those at the employed bar would pay £728. Barristers of one to four years’ call would pay £68 regardless of whether they are in private practice or employment. Barristers pay less from five years’ call onwards.

Budgetary Consultation

A consultation issued last week said the “budgetary challenges” include a decline in regulatory income and the costs of entity regulation start-up. Entity regulation also raises the possibility of levying fees on chambers in future.

It continued: “The options to close the £365,000 gap have included consideration of further cuts in activity and associated resources, as well as such income-raising measures as aligning the PCF [practising certificate fee] paid by the employed Bar with the self-employed Bar, significantly raising the fee paid by practitioners of three to four years’ call and increasing the PCF across the board by up to 5%. The Bar Council opted for the latter.”

Outsourcing Legal Dictation

The increase in Barristers fees means less money in their pocket, but there are ways that they can save money – and time. Lots of Barristers use secretaries to transcribe their dictation, but some don’t use a secretary at all and prefer to transcribe it themselves. By outsourcing legal dictation instead, they could save on the costs of employing a secretary in-house, as well as saving precious time which could be spent on finding new business.

Outsourcing legal dictation has been proven to improve service level provision as well, as legal dictation companies employ specialist transcriptionists with significant experience in a variety of legal fields. If desired, clients can also use the same transcriptionist for every project to maintain consistency. Legal coordinators ensure that files are allocated immediately once they are uploaded, and they work around the clock to manage progression to completion and return to the client.


There is a misconception that legal dictation companies outsource legal dictation to sub-par secretaries in foreign countries, but on the contrary, the transcriptionists they use are often of a higher quality than those employed by Barristers in-house. The key to outsourcing is flexibility, and most legal dictation companies will be happy to work with Barristers on a short-term or temporary basis. For more information, read our previous blog post which dispels the myths surrounding the outsourcing of legal dictation.

If you want to get one step ahead of the planned 5% increase in Barrister’s fees by outsourcing legal dictation, don’t hesitate to contact us today.

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