The bar regulator has told newly qualified barristers to use correct English grammar and spelling from ‘day one’ in the profession.
The Bar Standards Board’s recommendation comes in a revised version of its Professional Statement and Threshold Standard and Competences – a document that sets out the ‘skills, knowledge and attributes’ expected of a barrister immediately after getting their practising certificate.
Released yesterday, the statement says all new qualifiers should ‘use correct English grammar, spelling and punctuation in all communications’ as well as using ‘correct and appropriate vocabulary’.
It adds that barristers ‘will have an effective command of the language and be able to use it appropriately, accurately and fluently so as to handle complex and detailed argumentation’ and must write with ‘clarity, accuracy and precision’.
The Solicitors Regulation Authority says solicitors should have an ‘appropriate standard’ of written English and Welsh but does not specifically mention grammar.
A BSB spokesperson said: ‘Key aspects of the professional statement include being familiar with the BSB Code of Conduct, continuing professional development and issues relating to equality and access to justice.
‘The Professional Statement and Threshold Standard will underpin the future system of training for the bar. We will be consulting soon on a number of options for what this system might look like.’