Legal Services Council

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Consultation and Engagement

Bringing together community, client and legal practitioner perspectives is vital to the work of the Legal Services Council and the Commissioner for Uniform Legal Services Regulation. We consult with our stakeholders widely and regularly in carrying out our functions.

The Legal Services Council liaises with other jurisdictions to inform them about the Uniform Law and encourage them to join the scheme. This includes interstate visits and keeping Ministers informed about implementation of the Uniform Law.

Recent consultations

Comment on proposed changes to the Legal Profession Uniform General Rules - Managed Investment Schemes

Date issued: 21 May 2018

From 1 July 2018, new legislation on Managed Investment Schemes (MIS) is expected to commence in NSW and Victoria.  The proposed amendment of s 258 of the Uniform Law will restrict the involvement of law practices in the promotion and operation of mortgage practices and other MIS.  The new law also affects the provision of legal services in connection with mortgage practices.

The draft Uniform General Rules provide important details on the operation of s 258 of the Uniform Law, including an explanation of a 'related entity', 'financial institutions', 'mortgages' and a test of 'substantial interest' for an associate of a solicitor who would be taken to be engaging in a MIS.

The draft Uniform General Rules have been reviewed by Designated Legal Regulatory Authorities (DLRAs) and are now available for public consultation for 30 days in accordance with s 425(3)(b) of the Uniform Law. 

The LSC invites public comment on the draft Rules and will consider all reasonable submissions duly made and received.  The draft Rules are available to view here.

The LSC also invites public comment on the draft Information Sheet. The draft Information Sheet includes Frequently Asked Questions that we expect but we ask that you submit any further questions that you anticipate from the legal profession and the public.  The LSC will publish a final Information Sheet in July 2018 to assist the profession and the public to understand the changes relating to MIS. 

Submissions closed COB Wednesday 20 June 2018.

Public Consultation on Uniform Admission Rules changes to Schedule 2 Clause 5 (PLT Competency Standards)

Date issued: 12 March 2018

On 21 February 2018 the Legal Services Council (LSC) approved the release of draft changes to Schedule 2 cl 5 of the Legal Profession Uniform Admission Rules 2015 (UARs) for public consultation. Schedule 2 of the UARs outlines the practical legal training (PLT) competencies for entry-level lawyers.   

The objectives of Schedule 2 are:

  1. to incorporate, and
  2. to adapt, as far as is practicable and convenient for the purposes of the rules, the form of the PLT Competency Standards for Entry-level Lawyers published by the Law Admissions Consultative Committee (LACC), which came into effect on 1 January 2015.

The UARs Sch 2 cl 5 adopted and comprised cl 4 of the LACC PLT Competency Standards for Entry-level Lawyers. On 27 October 2017 LACC altered cl 4 of its PLT Competency Standards for Entry-level Lawyers, by retaining the text of cl 4 but re-numbering it cl 4.1 and including a new cl 4.2. The Council has resolved to mirror LACC's changes in the UARs by amending Sch 2 cl 5 accordingly.

A copy of the proposed amendments can be seen here.

The effect of the proposed changes is to prescribe how the minimum requirement of 15 days of workplace experience is to be completed; that is, at a rate of at least two full days per week or four half days per week.

The proposed Schedule 2 clause 5.2(g) allows a PLT provider to grant credit for any workplace experience acquired by an applicant up to two calendar years after the applicant has completed the programmed training component of a PLT course.

Submissions closed COB Thursday 12 April 2018.


Legal Profession Uniform General
Amendment (External Examiners) Rule 2018

Date issued: 20 February 2018

The Legal Services Council (LSC) is seeking public comment on a draft Uniform General Rule to reinstate the power to revoke the status of external examiners (EE) as designated persons under the Legal Profession Uniform Law.

Under the Uniform Law, the LSC makes rules for carrying out or giving effect to the Uniform Law. Subsection168(2)(e) states that the Uniform Rules may make provision with respect to the external examination of law practices' trust records.

The Uniform General Rules currently specify a list of designated classes of persons in sub rule 65(2), including members of the CPA, CAANZ, IPA and persons registered as auditors under Part 9.2 for the Corporations Act, who may be appointed as an EE under section156 of the Uniform Law. They provide the right of Designated Local Regulatory Authorities (DLRAs), the Victorian Legal Services Board & Commissioner and the Law Society of New South Wales, to approve the appointment termination of an EE by a law practice in accordance with sub rule 66(3).

At its meeting on 19 December 2017, the Council agreed to publish the Consultation Draft Uniform General Rule in order to consult with DLRAs and other stakeholders on whether the DLRAs should have power to revoke a person's eligibility for appointment as an EE in their own right. 

DLRAs and other professional accounting bodies have already provided submissions to the Council. This Consultation Draft Rule is released for public comment for a minimum period of 30 days in accordance with subsection 425(3)(b) of the Uniform Law.  

Submissions closed COB Friday 23 March 2018.


Consultative forums

Consultative forums which are rotated between States and Territories that have joined the Uniform Law scheme, provide:

  • a sounding board for the Council, the Commissioner and other key bodies to help inform how they exercise their functions, and
  • an opportunity to share information and ideas, explore issues about the Uniform Law and network with a broad group of participants.

The inaugural forum was held in Sydney on 20 November 2015 and three more have been held since then.

Email us at lsc@legalservicescouncil.org.au to register your early interest in future forums.

How to provide feedback

Submissions and feedback should be forwarded to:

There is no set format for making written submissions to the Council and they need not be formal documents. Electronic submissions in Microsoft Word (.docx) format are preferred.

Submissions may be published on the Legal Services Council website, unless the information is provided in confidence. If you would prefer for all or part of your submission not to be published please clearly mark the material 'IN CONFIDENCE'. 

If you have any questions or would like to provide comments in an alternative format please contact the Legal Services Council's secretariat on phone (02) 8293 5900.

If you are deaf, or have a hearing or speech impairment, you can contact us through the National Relay Service. For more information, visit: www.relayservice.gov.au.

 

 

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