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Queen's Counsel Act

[RSBC 1996] CHAPTER 393

Contents
 1 Attorney General to be appointed Queen's Counsel
 2 Power of Lieutenant Governor in Council to appoint Queen's Counsel
 3 Quota
 4 Eligibility for appointment
 5 When appointments may be made
 6 Precedence of certain members of Bar
 7 Precedence of other members of Bar
 8 Precedence of counsel acting for the government not affected by this Act

Attorney General to be appointed Queen's Counsel

1  On the appointment of a person to the office of the Attorney General of British Columbia, a commission must be issued appointing the person one of Her Majesty's Counsel learned in the law.

Power of Lieutenant Governor in Council to appoint Queen's Counsel

2  (1) On the recommendation of the Attorney General, the Lieutenant Governor in Council, by letters patent under the Great Seal, may appoint, from among the members of the Bar of British Columbia, Provincial officers under the names of Her Majesty's Counsel learned in the law for the Province of British Columbia.

(2) Before making a recommendation under subsection (1), the Attorney General must consult with

(a) the Chief Justice of British Columbia,

(b) the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and

(c) 2 members of the Law Society of British Columbia appointed by the benchers for that purpose.

Quota

3  The maximum number of persons who may be appointed as Her Majesty's Counsel learned in the law is 7% of the number of barristers and solicitors in British Columbia at the time the appointment is made.

Eligibility for appointment

4  A person is not eligible to be appointed unless he or she has at least 5 years' standing at the Bar of British Columbia.

When appointments may be made

5  The quota for the year or the quota as increased under section 3 may be made at any time during the year.

Precedence of certain members of Bar

6  (1) The following members of the Bar of British Columbia have precedence in the courts of British Columbia in the following order:

(a) the Attorney General of Canada;

(b) the Attorney General of British Columbia;

(c) the members of the Bar who have filled the offices of Attorney General of Canada while a member of the Bar of British Columbia, or Attorney General of British Columbia, according to seniority of appointment as Attorney General;

(d) the members of the Bar who have filled the office of Solicitor General for Canada according to seniority of appointment as Solicitor General;

(e) the members of the Bar of British Columbia appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council Her or His Majesty's Counsel learned in the law for British Columbia.

(2) All persons mentioned in subsection (1) (e) have precedence among themselves as prescribed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

Precedence of other members of Bar

7  The remaining members of the Bar have, as between themselves, precedence in the courts in the order of their call to the Bar.

Precedence of counsel acting for the government not affected by this Act

8  This Act does not affect rights or precedence of a member of the Bar when acting as counsel for the government, or an Attorney General, in a matter in the name of the government or of the Attorney General before the courts, and the right and precedence remains as if this Act had not been passed.