London, United Kingdom (PRWEB UK) 30 August 2013
The legal industry will undergo a ground-breaking change on 2nd September 2013 with the launch of Open Counsel, the first price comparison website for instructing barristers. Through the website, solicitors and members of the public will be able to compare the price and quality of up to six barristers before deciding whether or not to instruct one for expert legal advice or representation. The service promises to increase transparency and efficiency of access to justice in England and Wales.
Open Counsel is a 24/7 online portal for instructing barristers for advice or representation. The website allows users to post details of their case online and invite barristers from different chambers to quote for their service. Confidentiality is secured by keeping the user’s contact details hidden and ensuring that each barrister is a registered data controller.
Ousman Noor, Founder of Open Counsel states, ‘There is a need for greater transparency in the legal market. The public are bewildered by the amount of legal service providers, so we aim to give clear information on what is available and at what cost. Open Counsel is a free and independent service where users can receive honest and up-front quotes for the advice or representation they require and genuinely compare the market. We are proud to be the first to offer this kind of service.’
The barrister profession changed significantly early 2013 when the Bar Standards Board announced that the public would be able to go directly to any barrister in any area of law without the use of a solicitor. The change faced strong criticism from the Law Society which condemned the prospect of inexperienced barristers dealing directly with clients without the benefit of the legal infrastructure provided by solicitors. However, the vast majority of cases given to barristers still come from solicitors and the two professions continue to work side by side. Open Counsel aims to develop the working dynamic by allowing solicitors to compare the price and quality of several barristers before formal instruction.
Similar price comparison websites have successfully been implemented in many industries including financial services, insurance, hotel and flights bookings. Open Counsel is following suit by prompting the legal industry in to a new age of market comparison, transparency and competitive efficiency.
About Open Counsel
Open Counsel is an independent, free and confidential market comparison website helping solicitors and members of the public to make an informed choice when instructing barristers for legal advice and representation. Founded in 2013 by Ousman Noor, the 24/7 online portal service makes it easy for users to receive quotes from expert barristers specialising in over 50 areas of law, including Healthcare, Employment, Council Disputes and Consumer Protection. For more information, email info(at)opencounsel(dot)co(dot)uk or visit the website:opencounsel.co.uk.