Industry News

**31 October Deadline Approaching**

25 October 2016

A reminder that the deadline for applications to renew practising certificates is 31 October.  The deadline also applies to registrations as a REL or RFL, payment of the relevant fee, as well as the firm fee payable by recognised bodies and licensed bodies.

The SRA has made a number of improvements to the online form on MySRA, which should hopefully make the renewal process quicker and easier.  These include removing certain sections (or the requirement to complete certain sections) of the form, although the following new declaration has been added to reflect changes arising from the replacement of the CPD scheme by the continuing competence scheme:

"Have you / Has the individual reflected on their practice and addressed any identified learning and development needs or completed 16 hours of CPD training in the year to 31 October 2015?".

Failure to apply by the deadline would prevent the individual carrying out or supervising reserved work, which are activities defined in Schedule 2 to the Legal Services Act 2007, in accordance with Rule 8 of the Practice Framework Rules. 

Whether individuals require a practising certificate, will depend on:

  • whether they are exempt under section 88 of the Solicitors Act 1974 from holding a practising certificate;
  • the type of activities they undertake or are responsible for supervising;
  • whether they are employed as a solicitor explicitly or implicitly.  E.g. if solicitor, lawyer, counsel, attorney or legal practitioner are included in their job title, they would be implicitly a solicitor and adding 'non-practising' is not sufficient to negate this implication;
  • similarly, whether they are explicitly or implicitly held out as a solicitor.  The SRA sets out a long list of titles including legal consultant, legal adviser, legal expert, which would imply this, but they far more succinctly list the following job titles as not holding someone out as being a solicitor: adviser (but not legal adviser), caseworker, executive and paralegal;
  • whether they are referred to on their employer’s website, or in other publicity material or otherwise, as being a member of the Law Society.


Further guidance is available on the SRA website in Solicitors/Resources/FAQs in 'Do I need a practising certificate?', including additional guidance when working in a non-solicitor organisation or during a temporary break or retirement. 




Ian Braithwaite
Client Relationship Manager

T: 0845 056 3949
M: 0743 727 4046

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