This vacancy has now closed and is listed for reference only.

4 Paper Buildings- 12 months- October 2020

Chambers information
Name of chambers:
4 Paper Buildings
Head of Chambers:
Alex Verdan QC
Address of chambers:
4 Paper Buildings
Chambers email:
Chambers website address:
Main practice area:
Family Law
Practice areas:
Specialist services:
Public access work; Mediation; Arbitration; Pro bono
Number of junior tenancies (in the last three years):
Pupillage vacancy information
Number of pupillages:
Awards available:
Financial support level:
£30,000 - £39,999
Closing date:
11 February 2019 at 11:00 AM
Pupillage start date:
October 2020
Pupillage type:
12 month pupillage
At 4PB we invest a lot of time and energy into the selection and training of pupils. It begins with our tailored application form, through to our careful selection and interview process, all the way to the support and training our successful applicants receive during the course of their Pupillage.

As a consequence of our careful, fair and open selection process, Junior tenants are recruited only from our own pupils each year.

We aim to make Pupillage an enjoyable and practical experience, affording pupils the highest possible quality training from experienced pupil supervisors in all fields of Family Law.

4PB is an equal opportunities employer and we strive to ensure that each candidate is given an equal and fair opportunity within the selection process.

Pupillage at 4PB
We have a deserved reputation as one of the friendliest chambers in which to do your pupillage. Long established in the heart of the historic Inner Temple and highly respected, 4PB has maintained its position as one of the leading family Chambers in the field of Family Law. We are a Chambers with strong leadership, a friendly and supportive environment, forward-looking policies, set up for the challenges of the Bar.

Chambers combines the best of modern and traditional aspects of life at the Bar. Members aim to be approachable and supportive to pupils, whilst allowing them sufficient space to demonstrate initiative and to develop as individual practitioners. Having completed a Pupillage at 4PB with its known high quality training unsuccessful pupils who do not obtain tenancy at 4PB, usually do so elsewhere.

Work at 4PB
We are nationally and internationally recognised as one of the leading Family Law sets. Members of Chambers specialise in high-profile and cutting-edge cases in International private law, financial remedies, Public and private law. Members are regularly instructed in cases which are reported in law reports and the national press. Members also write articles and give lectures, seminars and webinars in and around the country.

Pupillages offered
4PB offers up to 3 funded 12-month pupillages every year. The award for 2020 is £30,000 per year and this is supplemented by any earnings from work done in your second six which is guaranteed to be at least £5,000.

In addition to the £30,000 paid to the successful candidate, 4PB offer a hardship bursary fund totalling £18,000 to be divided as appropriate to successful candidates. This is payable during the 12 month period prior to the commencement of pupillage to assist in meeting the costs of the Bar Professional Training Course fees (or to assist with repaying the course fees if you have already completed the BPTC. The award of the Bursary is means –tested and the amount of the award is discretionary. Applications for the Bursary will be open only to those who have been offered and accepted a pupillage at 4PB and an application may be submitted upon the acceptance of an offer of pupillage or at any time prior to the conclusion of the BPTC.

As a Pupil we expect you to be in court on average two to three times per week. In your second six, you will take on a varied but manageable caseload.

The pattern of pupillage at 4PB
During your 12 months you will be allocated three separate supervisors, i.e. one every 4 months. We will try and tailor your pupillage to meet a pupil's interest whilst also ensuring that pupils receive a thorough grounding in family practice. We endeavour to expose each pupil to private and International law, financial remedies and public law. In addition to working with your supervisor you will work for and go to court with other members of Chambers.

Junior tenants are recruited only from our own pupils each year. 4PB is an equal opportunities employer and we strive to ensure that each candidate is given an equal and fair opportunity within the selection process. The process is conducted by the Tenancy Committee who interview all pupils for prospective tenancy.

Chambers will provide support and endeavour to find alternative tenancies or third sixes for any unsuccessful pupil. We have, at present, a 100% success with this, with our most recently unsuccessful pupil walking straight into a tenancy at another well regarded London set.

NB We are aware there are two similar questions on the application form regarding activities and interests outside of work. Please answer both questions.
Application Questions

The following questions will form the Pupillage Application Questionnaire section of the application form for this pupillage vacancy. These are included here to allow you to prepare in advance.

  1. Why do you want to practice at the family bar and specifically at 4 Paper Buildings? (300 words)
  2. What skills,qualities and experience do you possess that will make you a successful family law barrister? (300 words)
  3. In Owens v Owens [2018] UKSC 41, the Supreme Court invited Parliament to consider changing the law to allow for no-fault divorce. Please argue in 300 words why Parliament should not change the law. (300 words)
  4. What outside interests and activities do you participate in? (150 words)
How to apply
To apply, please click on the Apply Online link below and then complete the online application form.