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Cape Bar Information

The Cape Bar’s Model Policy on Fair and Equitable Briefing Patterns


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1. The Cape Bar recognises that discriminatory briefing patterns by briefing entities are a contributory cause of the imbalance in the racial and gender profile of the membership of the Cape Bar.

2. In line with the Cape Bar’s mission statement that it is committed to changing the composition of its membership so as to be representative of South African society, the Cape Bar accordingly encourages fair and equitable briefing patterns of counsel.

3. The Cape Bar, in an effort to give effect to its mission statement, considers it both important and expedient that briefing entities adopt a policy on briefing advocates, and to that end, has prepared the following model policy on briefing patterns, for adoption by briefing entities.

4. The purpose of the model policy on briefing patterns is to facilitate equal opportunities in the field of advocacy, and to this end, to facilitate the realisation of the full potential of black and woman advocates, and by so doing, increase the race and gender composition of the Bar and the building up of a pool of experienced black and woman candidates for appointment to the bench.


5. In selecting counsel, all reasonable endeavours should be made to:

(a) identify black and female counsel in specific practice and interest areas;

(b) ensure that black and female counsel receive a fair and equitable share of briefs, having due regard to the number of briefs delivered to counsel in any one year, the nature and complexity of the work involved and the fee value of such briefs;

(c) regularly monitor and review the engagement of black and female counsel; and

(d) regularly report internally on the extent to which the said measures have been implemented.

8 March 2006.