In this section, we have tried to answer many frequently asked questions relating to the Inner Temple and the Bar in general. If you have a question that has not been answered here or throughout the site, please do not hesitate to contact the Inner Temple on 020 7797 8250.
Joining the Inn
When should I join?
You need to join by May 31st in the year that your BPTC starts (this has been extended in 2013 to account for the introduction of the Bar Course Aptitude Test until 31st July 2013). You may join the Inn at anytime from the first year of your LLB onwards. Please note that if you have a criminal record, a County Court Judgment, a Caution or have ever been bankrupt, you will need to apply as early as possible, as your application has to go before a committee.
How much does it cost?
The one off fee is £100. This is for lifetime membership of the Inn.
Can I join the Inn if I have a previous conviction?
The Inn does consider applications from people with previous convictions. However, the process will take longer, as the application will go before the Masters of the Bench on the Admission and Call Committee. They will decide whether you can be admitted to the Inn.
You must complete an additional form which will ask for more details about the offence. Please contact Jude Hodgson.
Do I need to join before applying for a scholarship?
You needn't join before applying, but if you are awarded a scholarship or prize you must join the Inn before accepting any money. Applicants for Inner Temple Awards may not be a member of any other Inn.
Who should I get references from?
You need two references from professional people (e.g. teachers, barristers, doctors, accountants etc) that have known you for at least one year.
I have an overseas qualification - can I join the Inn?
You need to contact the Bar Standards Board, as they will be able to inform you of all the requirements (academic and professional) that will be necessary for you to be called to the Bar. Please contact Steve Behr on +44 (0) 20 7611 1444. Please see the Bar Standards Board website for more information.
What differentiates the Inns? How should I choose which one to join?
When deciding between the four Inns of Court, prospective students often compare scholarships, ethos, education and training opportunities and membership. You should consider exploring the websites of each Inn to see what services are offered to students and members. You might also wish to take a tour of the Inns to consider which has the atmosphere that appeals most to you and contact the Education & Training departments should you have any questions. Please note that the Inns are not differentiated by areas of law. Each Inn covers all areas of law but you may only apply to join one Inn.
Laying between the Thames and Fleet Street, Inner Temple grounds include three acres of gardens as well as the famous Temple Church, of which the Round dates back to the Knights Templar in 1185. One of few remaining local divisions known as liberties, the membership of the Inn has long been committed to political engagement, critical thought and social responsibility. Our former members include signatories of the US Declaration of Independence and the first presidents of India, Malaysia and Botswana. The first female barrister was called to the Bar by Inner Temple as well as the first female judge of the Commercial Court and the first female judge appointed to the International Court of Justice. In addition, numerous Lords Chancellors and Lords Chief Justice in the UK were called to the Bar by Inner Temple.
What chance do I have of becoming a barrister?
It is a small and competitive profession. It is best to be realistic but if you are determined to succeed, then you can. In order to see what life at the Bar is really like, you need to undertake mini-pupillages, court visits and as much other legal experience (including working in a solicitor's firm or Citizens Advice Bureau etc) as you can. Also, experience of mooting and debating or other public speaking is useful, as is success in e.g. acting, journalism, writing, politics and so on.
Please look at the Bar Standards Board website for more information.
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