American 18-year-old becomes youngest-ever barrister

An American 18-year-old has become the youngest-ever person to be called to the bar in England and Wales.

Floridian Gabrielle Turnquest will be called to the bar today through the Honourable Society of Lincoln’s Inn.

Turnquest passed the Graduate Diploma in Law aged 17 and proceeded to undertake the University of Law’s Bar Professional Training Course. Originally from Windermere in Florida, she will return to America in the autumn to sit the US multistate bar and study an apparel industry management course at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising to continue with her aim of becoming a fashion law specialist.

Turnquest graduated from Liberty University in Virginia aged 16 after taking a BSc in psyschology, becoming the youngest person to graduate from the institution. She will also be called to the Bahamas Bar due to her parents’ heritage.

The average age of a BPTC graduate is 27. Before 2009, a lawyer had to be 21 to be called to the bar in England and Wales. This requirement was removed when the Consolidated Regulations of the Four Inns of Court were replaced by the Bar Training Regulations.

Turnquest commented that she was honoured to be the youngest graduate student to pass the bar and said that her introduction to a global legal system that would aid her future career in the international fashion industry.