Chambers has a detailed parental leave and flexible working policy; however, the policy as it applies to pupils is set out below. Any prospective pupil who wishes to discuss any caring arrangements (childcare and other caring responsibilities) or parental leave matters should contact the Head of the Pupillage Committee via, or our Equality and Diversity Officers via

Prospective pupils

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.  Chambers will also consider applications for other appropriate reasons.  Chambers does have an interest in ensuring relatively consistent numbers of pupils each year.

Prospective pupils with existing caring 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.

Current pupils

This part of the policy also applies to all first and second six pupils who are parents. The detailed flexible working policy should be consulted for third six pupils and squatters and may be obtained via the contact details above.

Pupils who become pregnant during pupillage may defer completion of the remainder of pupillage, subject to the requirements of the Bar Standards Board. So far as consistent with the requirements of the Bar Standards Board, all efforts shall be made to ensure that any pupil becoming a parent shall be provided with an appropriate period of leave.

In the event that an exemption, waiver or permission is required from the Bar Standards Board, 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, and for the avoidance of doubt no payments shall be paid by default during any period of deferral.  Any pupil who wishes to apply for draw-downs against any outstanding amount of the award during the deferral period, however, may do so. 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 caring 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.

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 urgent work and should arrange childcare or other care cover with this in mind wherever possible.

Pupils should be assured that any need to work flexible hours for reasons of caring commitments 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.