Chambers has a detailed parental leave policy, and the following is an extract from that policy as it applies to pupils. Any prospective pupil who wishes to discuss any childcare or parental leave matters should contact the Head of the Pupillage Committee, Richard Vallat QC, via firstname.lastname@example.org, or our Equality and Diversity Officers, Elizabeth Wilson and James Henderson, via email@example.com
Upon application, Chambers may defer the commencement of pupillage of prospective pupils who become pregnant prior to the commencement of pupillage for a period of up to 12 months.
Prospective pupils with existing childcare commitments may discuss with the Pupillage Committee how their working hours during pupillage can accommodate such commitments and should be advised of their entitlement to flexible working hours in accordance with this policy.
This part of the policy also applies to all first and second six pupils who are parents. Part II (flexible working hours) also applies to third six pupils and squatters.
Pupils who become pregnant during pupillage may defer completion of the remainder of pupillage, subject to the requirements of Part V of the Bar Training Regulations.
In the event that an exemption from the Bar Training Regulations is required, the pupil’s supervisor shall be responsible for obtaining written permission from the Bar Standards Board.
Such a deferral shall not affect the overall pupillage award which shall be paid monthly during the period in which the pupil is undertaking pupillage. In the event of a rise in the pupillage award following deferral and prior to commencement of the deferred period the pupil shall be paid at the increased rate during the deferred period.
In the event of deferral and during the pupil’s ‘break’ period, the pupil’s supervisor shall be their point of contact with Chambers.
Chambers shall accommodate pupils’ requests for flexible working hours in order to allow for childcare commitments. Such working hours should be discussed with the pupil’s supervisor in order to ensure that the pupil is able to complete the work that is required of him or her.
The need to work flexible hours for this reason should not, as far as possible, affect the allocation of court work during any practising period of pupillage. Pupils should however be aware of the demands of the court schedule and the necessity for evening and last-minute briefs and should arrange childcare with this in mind wherever possible.
Pupils should be assured that any need to work flexible hours for reasons of childcare will not in any way affect their prospects of being recruited as a tenant pursuant to the Chambers’ policy on recruitment of tenants from pupils.
 i.e. that except with the written permission of the Bar Standards Board: (i) the non-practising period of pupillage must be undertaken for a continuous period of six months (regulation 31); and (ii) the practising period of pupillage must commence within 12 months of completion of the non-practising period and be completed within an overall period of 9 months (regulation 32).