21 September 2019

Consultations: Alternative Business Structures – Fees and Fees and Charges

Alternative Business Structures - Fees 


Yesterday we opened a consultation on the cost of licensing of a BSB-regulated Alternative Business Structure ("ABS"). The consultation runs from 10 December 2015 to 10 January 2016 and invites comments on the proposed fee structure for the licensing of ABSs.

We intend to operate ABS regulation on a full cost recovery basis, and proposes that the fee structure will be separated into three elements:

  • An application fee - payable by all applicants.
  • An authorisation fee - payable by those who have been successful in their application and wish to be authorised by the BSB.
  • An annual fee - payable by those authorised ABSs who wish to retain their authorisation.

The infrastructure established to authorise and supervise ABS builds upon our existing systems and resources, most particularly those already in place for entities.

The consultation contains two questions:

  • Do you have any comments on our proposed approach to ABS fees?
  • In particular, do you have any views on the apportioning of fees between application, authorisation and annual fees?

To view the full consultation, please visit our website. Responses to the consultation should be sent to entityregulation@barstandardsboard.org.uk.


We submitted an application to the Legal Services Board in April 2015 to permit us to license ABS.  It was made with a view to extending our entity regulation regime launched in April 2015.

If the application is approved, we will be able to license, or authorise, bodies where there is non-lawyer management or ownership-type interest as provided for in the Legal Services Act 2007.


Fees and Charges consultation


On Thursday 10 December we launched a consultation about how we raise some of our revenue.

We are consulting on the fees and charges we currently levy on those who use specific regulatory services such as overseas lawyers, education and training providers and entities.

An online survey and supporting information was provided to key stakeholders to enable them to provide us with their views about what is the fairest way to fund the cost of certain aspects of regulation. This includes the history of how we have been funded and changes that have prompted us to conduct a thorough review.

We want to make sure that fees and charges imposed are fully accountable, transparent and fairly applied.

This consultation is quite separate from the one conducted by the General Council of the Bar on 2016 practising certificate fees under s51 of the Legal Services Act 2007.

Our consultation closes on Monday, 15 February 2016 at 5pm.