A person locking a prison door. The criminal team includes specialists with expertise in relation to prisons and parole boards including hearings and pre-tariff reviews.

Prisons and Parole Boards

The criminal team at Linenhall Chambers includes specialists holding high levels of experience and expertise in relation to both prison law including Parole Board hearings and pre-tariff reviews.

Our team undertakes work on behalf of prisoners, or any person subject to licence, in relation to Parole Board hearings where a prisoner is eligible for release, pre-tariff reviews for possible transfers to open conditions prior to release and in instances where a prisoner is recalled to prison having been alleged to have committed a further offence.

Barristers at Linenhall Chambers undertaking work, both legally aided and privately funded, in this highly specialised area work closely with solicitors, including those holding Prison Law Contracts and those with Legal Aid contracts. They provide oral advocacy at hearings, often following Member Case Assessment (MCA) undertaken by our barristers or by the client’s criminal solicitors. They also undertake adjudications before independent adjudicators.

They work with clients with both determinate and indeterminate sentences including prisoners in open conditions or those returned to prison from open conditions. They also have particular experience in dealing with recall clients, lifers, two strike lifers and those imprisoned for the protection of the public (IPP) and frequently represent life and IPP prisoners who have been unsuccessful in getting parole through previous applications, sometimes on multiple occasions.

They regularly represent clients in Category A reviews for the highest security prisoners following conviction and sentence, at First Formal Review and any subsequent annual reviews.

In addition, our team has particular experience in working with clients with learning, mental health and other disabilities as well as a high level of specialism in representing young offenders where they have familiarity with the regulations and process in specific young offenders’ institutions.

Our team of barristers includes individuals with a working background with individuals with additional needs as well as team members who have worked as solicitors specialising exclusively in prison law and in parole hearings, experience which enables them to provide the best possible advice, guidance and support to clients. Our team also includes members of the Howard League for Penal Reform and the Association of Prison Lawyers.

Linenhall’s barristers can also represent foreign nationals including where deportation status may influence the chances of parole and the options available.

Privately funded work is undertaken in relation to recategorization review appeals which have been denied where a right exists to challenge and provide written representations. Our expert barristers can work with clients, with an instructing solicitor or on a direct access basis, to make those written representations or provide guidance to clients wishing to make representations themselves. They can also help with reconsideration representations where prisoners want to have the matter reconsidered by the Parole Board ahead of any judicial review which may take place.

Work is undertaken across England and Wales but particularly in North Wales, the North West, including Manchester, and the Midlands.

Our barristers undertake a large amount of work from HMP Berwyn, HMP Altcourse and HMP and Young Offenders Institution Stoke Heath but their level of expertise is such that they are able to undertake cases and travel to attend hearings anywhere in England and Wales.

Our specialists in Prisons and Parole Boards

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Accreditations and awards

Linenhall Chambers and its members are regulated by the Bar Standards Board.