Who we are?

The BBA exists to help past and present practising members of the bar in England and Wales, including the judiciary, and their families and dependants. The criteria are that the applicant is needy and deserving. The aim is, wherever possible, to overcome the problem and rebuild the applicant’s life and career.

There is a wide range of reasons for needing help, there can be serious long-term or terminal illness, shorter health scares or accidents affecting income for weeks or months, unexpected financial problems due to circumstances beyond the beneficiary’s control, problems of old age.

Looking for support from The BBA?

How we can help

Although we cannot offer specific advice our staff can point people towards those who can, particularly in cases of financial need. They are also happy to be a contact on the phone, someone to call for a reassuring chat. In appropriate cases we are able to offer financial help, – as a grant or a secured or unsecured loan. If all else fails we can help with IVAs and bankruptcies.

Some beneficiaries receive regular “disregard” grants to top up their DWP benefits as well as other specific occasional help.

In exceptional circumstances help has been given to enable children to remain at their chosen school if they are at a vital stage of their education and single parents have been helped with school uniforms, a new pair of shoes or a birthday treat. Special help can be given with funding a much-needed holiday break, providing a computer, paying telephone bills, mending or replacing home equipment.

Every case is unique and every application is considered on its own merits and circumstances.

Need help & support?

Support The BBA

Vision & Mission Statement

We exist to support, help and comfort those members of the Bar in England and Wales and their families and dependants who are in need, in distress or in difficulties. During the recent past we have helped barristers and their families in every circuit, often saving not only dignity but careers.

Our staff are experienced, kind and practical: our Association is a last safety net for those struck down, their partners and children, where there is no income, no capital, no family back up.

Information & Resources

Adverts for Chambers & Inns

The members of The Barristers’ Benevolent Association committee invite you to advertise in the Annual Review in return for a suggested minimum donation of £250.

If you would like to advertise, please contact the BBA office:

Thank You

People are generous in all sorts of ways, and whatever the size of the donation, or however it was raised, we are always equally grateful.

Each year we receive a number of anonymous donations plus regular donations from some whom we don’t have contact details for. If this is you, please consider sharing your details so that The BBA can acknowledge receipt and send you our thanks.

Many thanks to everyone who has donated to us in the last year. 

Download our latest Annual Review

Annual Review 2022

The BBA rose to a major challenge posed by COVID-19 over the last two years and 8 months. In April 2020, in order to deal with the increased need amongst members of the Bar, some of whom found themselves completely out of work and ineligible for assistance from the government, the BBA together with the Four Inns of Court launched the COVID-19 Appeal. By the end of 2022, the appeal had raised over £1.5 million, including £600,000 donated by the Inns.

Learn more in the full copy of our 2022 Annual Review, available to download here.

The Barristers’ Benevolent Association exists because of the generosity of people like you.

We are a charity and rely on fundraising and donations from Chambers and individual barristers so please consider supporting us if you can.