21 August 2019

Barrister who failed to pay £5,000 tribunal fine to be disbarred

30 May 2014

A barrister who failed to comply with the order of a previous disciplinary tribunal was this week ordered to be disbarred from the profession.

The independent panel heard that unregistered barrister Christopher Mills had failed to pay the Bar Standards Board (BSB) a fine totalling £5,335.

The fine was imposed after a previous tribunal in December 2012 found Mr Mills to have held himself out as a barrister, which could have misled others about his practising status.

The five-person panel, chaired by HHJ Stuart Sleeman, heard that Mr Mills had failed to pay the original fine and respond to requests from the BSB for information.

HHJ Sleeman said that Mr Mills' failure to comply with the previous tribunal order and his refusal to engage with the BSB showed "no remorse" and a determination "to defy his regulatory body".

Head of Professional Conduct at the BSB, Sara Jagger, said: "The apparent lack of remorse and persistent defiance - of both the disciplinary and regulatory processes - undermines the reputation of the profession. Disbarment really was the only option left in this instance."

The hearing took place on Wednesday 28 May 2014.


Notes to editors

About Mr Christopher Mills
Mr Mills was called to the Bar in 1984. He was an unregistered barrister. He had completed the academic stage of the Bar's training and was called to the Bar. However, he had not completed pupillage so was not entitled to offer or provide legal services as a barrister but could still use the title in limited circumstances.

About Disciplinary Tribunals
The Council of the Inns of Court (COIC) is an independent body - separate to the BSB - which is responsible for appointing the Disciplinary Tribunal panels which adjudicate on disciplinary charges brought by the BSB for professional misconduct. This function has been performed under COIC's auspices by the Bar Tribunal and Adjudication Service (BTAS).

Contact: for media enquiries please call 0207 6111 452 (07432 713 328 outside of normal working hours) or email EGrant@barstandardsboard.org.uk.