Imogen Egan – from OTC/FRU pupil to Outer Temple Chambers barrister
In 2015, Imogen Egan became the second pupil to benefit under a ground-breaking joint venture between Outer Temple Chambers and the Free Representation Unit (“FRU”), an extended (eighteen-month) pupillage scheme.
Outer Temple Chambers is now delighted to announce that Imogen has not only just completed her qualifying period of pupillage but has been offered a tenancy in Chambers.
The scheme was set up in 2013 to provide a pupillage to someone who had not been able to obtain a pupillage through the more conventional routes. The pupil is selected without reference to any of the normal detail provided in more conventional applications, such as educational background and academic/work qualifications. Candidates are asked to confirm merely that they have passed the BPTC, the minimum academic criterion. After a paper exercise, those interviewed for selection are asked only to confirm that they have no criminal convictions or findings against them and to provide details of any pro bono work with which they have been involved.
Imogen has just completed twelve months at OTC after a six-month stint at the London office of FRU, where she represented clients in unfair dismissal, wages, whistleblowing, direct and indirect discrimination claims, on a pro-bono basis. Imogen is most proud of the re-engagement order granted to one of her pro-bono clients. As a pupil at OTC, Imogen has worked with three pupil supervisors, gaining experience of the wide range of work undertaken by members of chambers, including but not limited to public law, personal injury and clinical negligence, together with further employment work in her last six months at OTC and at FRU.
Head of Pupillage, James Counsell QC, warmly welcomed Chambers’ decision to offer Imogen a place as a barrister: “when we set up the scheme with FRU, our purpose was to provide a pupillage to someone who has not yet been fortunate enough to obtain one through the usual channels” he said. “The result is that we have been able to select a pupil with all the right skills to excel as a barrister and we are extremely satisfied that the scheme is working so well.”
Michael Reed, Principal Legal Officer at FRU said: ‘I’m delighted that OTC has taken Imogen on as a tenant; but not at all surprised. She was a real asset to us at FRU during her pupillage. I look forward to watching her progress as a new tenant – and to tempting her back for some pro bono work when she has time.”
Naomi Cunningham, an employment barrister at OTC, who supervised Imogen for the last six months of her pupillage and who thought up the scheme, added “This is an extremely positive outcome for the Extended Pupillage scheme. We started with the intention of conferring the privilege of pupillage on a good candidate who was hard to spot in a conventional recruitment process. The privilege is now ours: Imogen will be a great asset to OTC.”
Imogen’s full profile can be found here.
FRU is a charity which aims to assist those who cannot pay for legal representation by representing them in Social Security and Employment Tribunals. FRU represents approximately 1,000 claimants annually. Most of this work is done by volunteers, primarily law students and legal professionals in the early stages of their career, who are trained and supervised by a small staff of Legal Officers.
Barristers: Imogen Egan