RAF Legal Branch
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|Royal Air Force Legal Branch|
|Founded||1 October 1948|
|Branch||Royal Air Force|
|Headquarters||RAF High Wycombe|
|Current Director||Air Vice Marshal L J Irvine|
The Royal Air Force Legal Branch (RAFLB) or Directorate Legal Services (DLS) - as it is better known - is the uniformed legal service provider for the Royal Air Force. It consists of solicitors and barristers qualified in a Commonwealth jurisdiction. DLS is headquartered at Air Command RAF High Wycombe. The Directorate is currently staffed by a mixture of members of:
- The Law Society of England and Wales;
- The Law Society of Scotland;
- The Bar Council of England and Wales; and
- The Society of Writers to Her Majesty's Signet.
It is open to men or women; those that have been recruited vary from NQ to 10 years PQE. DLS has around 50 legal officers. Around 30% of DLS officers are based in overseas billets. The type of work undertaken by legal officers depends on the billet they are working at. Around 50% of the billets are discipline / criminal law, 30% of the billets are operations law and 20% of the billets are administrative law. The RAF also provides 4 Legal Officers to the Service Prosecuting Authority.
The career structure of a legal officer within DLS would commence with a short service commission as a Flight Lieutenant after a 3-month SERE course at RAF Cranwell. If the candidate is suitable then appointment to a permanent commission and subsequent promotion will be by selection.
Directors of Legal Services (RAF)
- Air Commodore John Bankes Walmsley (1950 - 1957)
- Air Commodore Marshall William Palmer (1957 - 1961)
- Air Vice-Marshal John Ernest Allen-Jones (1961 - 1970)
- Air Vice-Marshal Aubrey Sidney-Wilmot (1970 - 1978)
- Air Vice-Marshal Peter Furniss (December 1978 to April 1982)
- Air Vice-Marshal Graham Neil Forman (1982 - 1989)
- Air Vice-Marshal Reginald Thomas Dawson (1989 - 1992)
- Air Vice-Marshal Geoffrey W Carleton (1993 - 1997)
- Air Vice-Marshal John Weeden (1997 - 2002)
- Air Vice-Marshal Richard Anthony Charles (2002 - 2009)
- Air Vice Marshal Lindsay J Irvine (April 2009 to present)
- Air Commodore Lindsay Irvine (2002 to April 2009)
- Air Commodore William H Boothby (April 2009 to July 2011)
- Air Commodore S J Kell (July 2011 to July 2014)
- Air Commodore A Mardell (2014 to present)
- "Legal services". raf.mod.uk. October 8, 2008. Retrieved 2009-05-14.
- "AIR RANK APPOINTMENTS LIST 09/08". raf.mod.uk. Retrieved 2009-03-12.
- "Air Rank Appointments List 01/11". raf.mod.uk. Retrieved January 9, 2015.