Advocates and solicitors who work on imminent or ongoing court or tribunal hearings are included in the government’s list of key workers.

The government has acknowledged that keeping the justice system running during the current coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis is vital, and that legal practitioners are fundamental to achieving this aim.

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has now issued further guidance on which legal practitioners come within this limited category of key workers:

Legal practitioners covered by key worker category

The government has confirmed that keyworkers include those “essential to the running of the justice system”. On 20 March, the MoJ Justice shared a list of key workers within this category.

We would like to provide further clarification of those legal practitioners covered within this category who are essential to the running of the justice system, and, in particular, the courts and tribunals:

  • advocates (including solicitor advocates) required to appear before a court or tribunal (remotely or in person), including prosecutors
  • other legal practitioners required to support the administration of justice including duty solicitors (police station and court) and barristers, solicitors, legal executives, paralegals and others who work on imminent or ongoing court or tribunal hearings
  • solicitors acting in connection with the execution of wills
  • solicitors and barristers advising people living in institutions or deprived of their liberty.

Only legal practitioners who work on the types of matters, cases and hearings listed above, will be permitted to be classified as a keyworker.