Engagement of barrister guidelines

The Transport Accident Commission ("The TAC") retains a broad range of barristers in its role as a major purchaser of legal services.

All barristers not currently performing TAC work, who wish to accept work for the TAC, are required to put their request in writing to the TAC with a copy of their curriculum vitae.

New requests will be considered by the TAC's Senior Manager Resolution or their delegate, on a quarterly basis, with outcomes communicated to either the barrister or his/her clerk. The outcome will be documented and all documents retained securely. This will include the agreed fee if the barrister undertakes work on behalf of the TAC. 

At this time the barrister will also be advised that they will be expected to act in accordance with the TAC's guidelines relating to barristers as posted on the TAC's website.  A barrister already on the list will be expected to act in accordance with the TAC's guidelines relating to barristers as posted on the TAC's website. 

The TAC also reserves the right to approach a barrister, not on its list of preferred barristers, considered suitable to undertake its work.

The TAC will review its Preferred Barrister List on an annual basis. Any barrister on that list who has not been briefed in the preceding 24 months will be removed from the list. A barrister who has been removed from the list can re-apply for inclusion at any time and will be considered in accordance with these guidelines.


  1. The guidelines apply to the engagement of barristers by the TAC.
  2. The guidelines apply to all briefs to carry out services for the conduct of litigation and related advice as allocated by the TAC. 


  1. In delivering a brief to a barrister it is a condition that in accepting the brief, a barrister is not and has not been declared bankrupt.
  2. A barrister who has been declared bankrupt, and who has been the subject of an adverse disciplinary finding by a professional body in relation to the circumstances of that bankruptcy, is only to be engaged with the explicit approval of the Senior Manager Resolution.     


  1. In delivering a brief to a barrister it is a condition that in accepting the brief, that barrister has complied with the Australian Taxation Office legislation and guidelines.

Selection of barristers

  1. All barristers will be selected for their skills and irrespective of their gender. The TAC is to ensure that arbitrary and prejudicial factors do not operate to exclude the engagement of female barristers or to otherwise limit the range of barristers when considering suitability for the brief.
  2. In selecting a barrister, all reasonable endeavours are to be made to:
    (a) identify all barristers in the relevant practice area with the appropriate skill sets;
    (b) generally consider engaging such barristers;
    (c) ensure compliance with the equal opportunity briefing policy;
    (d) regularly monitor and review the engagement of barristers.

Model litigant

  1. It is expected that a barrister engaged by the TAC will comply with the State of Victoria Model Litigant Guidelines. Please refer to the Revised Model Litigant Guidelines (2011).

Reputational Risk

  1. There is an expectation that a barrister will not engage in any conduct that is likely to damage the reputation of the TAC.  

Time lines

  1. The TAC expects that any brief for work should be carried out in a timely manner, unless the TAC is advised to the contrary within five working days of a barrister having received the brief.

Accepting Briefs

  1. The TAC expects that a barrister will not, save in the case of circuit matters, accept another brief for the same day/days as the TAC brief unless express approval is sought from the Senior Manager Resolution or his or her delegates.

Victorian Bar Practice Rules ("the Rules")

  1. The TAC expects that a barrister will comply with the Rules.

For any further questions regarding these guidelines please contact the Senior Manager Resolution on 1300 654 329.