The Lee Essay Prize 2020

The Lee Essay Prize competition is now open.

Founded in 1864 by the late John Lee (1783-1866), a Master of the Bench, well known astronomer and Fellow of the Royal Society, essays are invited on a selected subject on the Common or Statute Law of England and Wales.

This competition awards a first prize of up to £1,500 and a second prize of up to £500!


'With the demise of civil legal aid in most areas of civil law, have the Jackson reforms of 1st April 2013 and the requirements of practising with these rules helped or hampered the quest for justice and the development of the law? Would we be better off just moving into contingency payments?'


  • Open to any student members of the Inn or members who have been called to the Bar within the last twelve months (as at the submission deadline)
  • Applicants may not have already gained a Lee Essay Prize
  • This is an individual competition (no teams may enter)
  • Your essay must be 3,000 to 5,000 words (including footnotes) - essays below or exceeding these lengths will not be considered
  • The essay must be your original composition
  • Your essay must be signed using a pseudonym
  • Your essay must conform to this style guide (PDF)


Your essay must be submitted by midnight on 1 October 2020.


Please use the below form to submit your essay. Should you have any queries, please contact the scholarships team.

All fields marked * are compulsory. Your information will be used in accordance with the Inn's Data Privacy Notice.

Sign your essay using this pseudonym (your attached essay must not contain your real name).
Your essay must be 3,000 to 5,000 words (including footnotes) to be considered.
Please attach a PDF version of your essay. Please use the file name format: 'Pseudonym - The Lee Essay Submission 2019-20'
Files must be less than 2 MB.
Allowed file types: gif jpg jpeg png pdf.
Any queries will be responded to by the Education Department.
You can select multiple options.
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Date posted: 10 July 2020