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Our Response to Covid-19 (Coronavirus)

Updated: Tuesday 5 January at 5 pm

The estate is currently closed to the general public. Residents & those who work on the estate can continue to gain access via their usual routes and methods but all other visitors must enter via the Gatehouse on the corner of Lincoln’s Inn Fields. A map is available here. Visitors are urged to implement social distancing.

We are proud of the professionalism and commitment all the Inn’s employees have shown and continue to show at this difficult time. In line with our values, we continue to look after our employees, whose dedication and loyalty we value highly.

In line with government guidance for employers and places of work, we have completed a full risk assessment of the Inn. Due to the multi-faceted nature of the Inn, there is more than one document; these are are available to download from this page.

We recognise this is a challenging time for our members.  We have produced a guide to wellbeing and information resources to assist our members in finding sources of information and support during the current pandemic.

The BSB has issued a statement and is regularly updating its FAQs: BSB Statement on COVID-19

The Bar Council is also collating updates of relevance to the profession: www.barcouncil.org.uk/useful-information/coronavirus-advice-and-updates.html

Information and support is available via the Bar Council’s Wellbeing at the Bar website.

Support for our members

The Inn is very aware of the potential impact of the pandemic on the profession and wants to support members through this period of difficulty.

Like everyone else, however, the Inn’s income is reduced and it needs to meet continued outgoings. We want to make sure that our help is directed where it is most needed – we will therefore expect people to access government and other support where it is available and we will need to be sure that when help is requested it relates to difficulty arising from the pandemic.

The Inn has allocated additional budget to both its support to the Barristers’ Benevolent Association (BBA) and to its own hardship fund which it aims to target to those in greatest need of support. The priority for the Inn’s hardship fund is likely to be recent tenants, pupils, and students.  Barristers who have held a brief should apply to the BBA fund.

To apply for the Barristers’ Benevolent Association fund please visit their website: www.the-bba.com/covid19-appeal-applications

To apply for the Inn’s COVID-19 Hardship Fund please download and complete the form and return it to Emma Jeffery.

The Inns have issued a joint press release on the support they are providing to the profession.

Treasury Office

The Treasury Office is operational, with staff working remotely, although our physical offices are still closed. For general enquiries, please email mail@lincolnsinn.org.uk or ring 0207 405 1393.

Your usual contacts within the Inn’s departments should also be contactable via their usual email addresses.

Events & Catering

Members’ Lunch in Hall and the MCR are suspended in line with the national Covid restrictions for England, announced by the government on Monday 4 January.

We will continue to monitor official guidance closely, and aim to reopen these services as soon as we possibly can.

Our Members’ Accommodation remains open, in line with the current allowance for people to travel for work purposes.

Library

The Library will be closed to visitors from Tuesday 5 January, in line with the national Covid restrictions for England which were announced on Monday 4 January.

A remote service will be provided; please contact library@lincolnsinn.org.uk with your queries and a member of the team will respond.

Compulsory training for pupils and new practitioners

There is a large backlog of people who need to complete the NPP course and we will prioritise those who most urgently need to complete.

Current students

Qualifying Sessions

All qualifying sessions for the Hilary term will be held remotely via video conferencing. We are delivering sessions in five formats: advocacy workshops, ethics workshops, webinar, seminar and legal research training. More information can be found on our Qualifying Sessions page.

Student members of the Inn are encouraged to take part in our Mooting and Debating Clubs, which will be held online. More information can be found on our Clubs & Competitions page.

Centralised Assessment Results

August Sitting Exam Results:
Criminal and Civil Litigation: Monday 12 October
Professional Ethics: Friday 6 November

October Sitting Exam Results:
Criminal and Civil Litigation: Friday 27 November
Professional Ethics: w/c Monday 18 January

Students who completed exams in both August and October will receive their best result on the October release dates. There will be another exam sitting in December.

Call to the Bar

The Inn is monitoring guidelines ahead of all Call to the Bar dates, and details will be released on our Call to the Bar page when confirmed.  Although we wish to Call students in person, we will, of course, keep the format of these Call Days under review and may have to adjust plans in line with the government advice at the time.

Due to the national Covid restrictions for England implemented on Tuesday 5 January, the February Call to the Bar must be held fully in absence. The March Call is likely to also be required to be held in absence however we will monitor the regulations over the coming weeks.

Prospective students

Admissions

Admissions to the Inn will reopen on Monday 1 February. The procedure for admission will change from this date and we kindly ask that prospective members do not email admission documents to us. Full details on admission will be displayed on the Joining the Inn section of the Inn’s website in due course.

Residents & tenants

Lincoln’s Inn is sensitive to the fact that Bar, commercial and residential tenants may be suffering financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Our objective is to provide effective financial assistance where it is most needed.  With that in mind, the Inn will consider applications for financial assistance in relation to rent, where tenants are facing real difficulty.

Residents, commercial and Bar tenants can apply to the Inn for financial assistance in confidence. Applications will be anonymised before being considered by a small dedicated panel of Benchers of the Inn.

For further information on the application and consideration process, please see the document ‘ Guidance on Applying for Rent Assistance’ which is available to download from this page.

The application forms for residents and Bar / commercial tenants are also available to download from this page. Completed applications should be emailed to: rentassistance@lincolnsinn.org.uk.

Parking

Parking has been restricted and is now only available to members or staff of chambers and residential tenants.  The Inn has suspended all parking charges during this period. The Gatehouse remains staffed 24 hours a day.

Chapel

In response to the national Covid restrictions for England announced on Monday 4 January, Chapel is currently closed. Our services for the first half of Hilary term have moved online, as this is the most appropriate response for our dispersed community. This will be reviewed in mid-February.

You can continue to maintain contact with the Chapel community through our Chapel Online videos.

The Preacher is always happy to provide a listening ear and pastoral support to members.  She can be contacted at Sheila.Watson@lincolnsinn.org.uk.

Gardens

The North Lawn and other open spaces around the Inn’s estate are still accessible to residents and tenants.  All those using the gardens must respect the current government rules on social distancing and only gather in household groups or as two individuals from different households.

Accommodation at the Inn

Our Members’ Accommodation remains open. Bookings can be made now through our Member Events team.

The estate and emergencies

The Estates Helpdesk is being staffed as normal 9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday, and essential works will be carried out as quickly as possible. Please contact the Estates Helpdesk on 0207 831 1839 or at Estateshelpdesk@lincolnsinn.org.uk.  Out of hours, enquiries should be directed to the Gatehouse on 020 7693 5190.