Legal Profession Act 2008

 

Legal Profession Act 2008

Contents

Part 1 — Preliminary

1.Short title2

2.Commencement2

Part 2 — Interpretation

3.Terms used3

4.Terms relating to lawyers17

5.Terms relating to legal practitioners17

6.Terms relating to associates and principals of law practices18

7.Home jurisdiction19

8.Suitability matters20

9.Information notices22

10.References to conviction and quashing conviction23

Part 3 — Reservation of legal work and related matters

Division 1 — Preliminary

11.Purposes24

Division 2 — General prohibitions on unqualified practice

12.Prohibition on engaging in legal practice when not entitled24

13.Prohibition on representing or advertising entitlement to engage in legal practice when not entitled26

14.Presumptions about taking or using name, title or description specified in regulations27

15.Associates who are disqualified or convicted persons28

16.Sharing income with unqualified persons29

17.Permitting or assisting unqualified persons to practise29

Division 3 — General

18.Prohibited person must not act as executor or trustee29

19.Professional discipline30

Part 4 — Admission of local lawyers

Division 1 — Preliminary

20.Purposes31

Division 2 — Eligibility and suitability for admission

21.Eligibility for admission31

22.Suitability for admission32

23.Early consideration of suitability32

24.Referral of matters to SAT33

Division 3 — Admission to the legal profession

25.Application for admission34

26.Admission by Supreme Court34

27.Objection to admission35

28.Roll of persons admitted to legal profession35

29.Local lawyer is an officer of Supreme Court36

Division 4 — Functions of Legal Practice Board in relation to admissions

30.Board to advise on applications for admission36

31.Compliance certificates36

32.Consideration of applicant’s eligibility and suitability37

Division 5 — Miscellaneous

33.Board is respondent to application under this Part38

Part 5 — Legal practice by Australian legal practitioners

Division 1 — Preliminary

34.Purposes39

Division 2 — Legal practice in this jurisdiction by Australian legal practitioners

35.Entitlement of Australian legal practitioner to practise in this jurisdiction39

36.WA government lawyers taken to be local legal practitioners39

Division 3 — Local practising certificates generally

37.Local practising certificates41

38.Suitability to hold local practising certificate41

39.Duration of local practising certificate43

40.Professional indemnity insurance44

41.Local legal practitioner is officer of Supreme Court44

Division 4 — Grant or renewal of local practising certificate

42.Application for grant or renewal of local practising certificate44

43.Manner of application and fees47

44.Timing of application for renewal of local practising certificate47

45.Grant or renewal of local practising certificate49

Division 5 — Conditions on local practising certificates

46.Conditions generally50

47.Conditions imposed by Board51

48.Imposition or variation of conditions pending criminal proceedings53

49.Conditions imposed on interstate admission53

50.Restricted legal practice54

51.Notification of offence56

52.Conditions imposed by legal profession rules57

53.Compliance with conditions57

Division 6 — Amendment, suspension or cancellation of local practising certificates

54.Application of this Division57

55.Grounds for amending, suspending or cancelling local practising certificate57

56.Amending, suspending or cancelling local practising certificate58

57.Operation of amendment, suspension or cancellation of local practising certificate59

58.Immediate suspension of local practising certificate61

59.Other ways of amending, suspending or cancelling local practising certificate62

60.Relationship of this Division with Part 1362

Division 7 — Special powers in relation to local practising certificates — show cause events

61.Applicant for local practising certificate — show cause event63

62.Holder of local practising certificate — show cause event63

63.Refusal, amendment, suspension or cancellation of local practising certificate — failure to show cause64

64.Restriction on making further applications65

65.Power to renew practising certificate or defer action in special circumstances65

66.Relationship of this Division with Part 1366

Division 8 — Further provisions relating to local practising certificates

67.Return of local practising certificate66

Division 9 — Interstate legal practitioners

68.Requirement for professional indemnity insurance67

69.Extent of entitlement of interstate legal practitioner to practise in this jurisdiction67

70.Additional conditions on practice of interstate legal practitioners68

71.Notification requirements for interstate legal practitioners69

72.Special provisions about interstate legal practitioner engaging in unsupervised legal practice in this jurisdiction71

73.Interstate legal practitioner is officer of Supreme Court73

Division 10 — Miscellaneous provisions relating to practice

74.Jurisdiction protocols73

75.Consideration and investigation of applicants or holders74

76.Register of local practising certificates75

77.Orders about conditions76

78.Review of decisions of Board76

79.Interstate government lawyers76

80.Fees78

Part 6 — Inter‑jurisdictional provisions regarding admission and practising certificates

Division 1 — Preliminary

81.Purpose79

82.Other requirements not affected79

Division 2 — Notifications to be given by local authorities to interstate authorities

83.Official notification to other jurisdictions of applications for admission and associated matters79

84.Official notification to other jurisdictions of removals from local roll80

85.Board to notify other jurisdictions of certain matters80

Division 3 — Notifications to be given by lawyers to local authorities

86.Lawyer to give notice of removal of name from interstate roll81

87.Lawyer to give notice of interstate orders81

88.Lawyer to give notice of foreign regulatory action82

89.Provisions relating to requirement to notify82

Division 4 — Taking of action by local authorities in response to notifications received

90.Peremptory removal of local lawyer’s name from local roll following removal in another jurisdiction83

91.Peremptory cancellation of local practising certificate following removal of name from interstate roll83

92.Show cause procedure for removal of lawyer’s name from local roll following foreign regulatory action84

93.Show cause procedure for cancellation of local practising certificate following foreign regulatory action85

94.Order for non‑removal of name86

95.Order for non‑cancellation of local practising certificate87

96.Local authority may give information to other local authorities88

Part 7 — Incorporated legal practices and multi‑disciplinary partnerships

Division 1 — Preliminary

97.Purposes89

98.Terms used89

Division 2 — Incorporated legal practices providing legal services

99.Nature of incorporated legal practice90

100.Non‑legal services and businesses of incorporated legal practices91

101.Corporations eligible to be incorporated legal practice91

102.Notice of intention to start providing legal services92

103.Prohibition on representations that corporation is incorporated legal practice92

104.Notice of corporation ceasing to engage in legal practice93

105.Incorporated legal practice must have legal practitioner director93

106.Obligations of legal practitioner director relating to misconduct95

107.Incorporated legal practice without legal practitioner director96

108.Obligations and privileges of practitioners who are officers or employees97

109.Professional indemnity insurance98

110.Conflicts of interest99

111.Disclosure obligations99

112.Effect of non‑disclosure on provision of certain services100

113.Application of legal profession rules101

114.Requirements relating to advertising101

115.Extension of vicarious liability relating to failure to account, pay or deliver and dishonesty to incorporated legal practices102

116.Sharing of receipts, revenue or other income102

117.Disqualified persons103

118.Audit of incorporated legal practice103

119.Banning of incorporated legal practices105

120.Disqualification from managing incorporated legal practice107

121.Disclosure of information to Australian Securities and Investments Commission108

122.External administration proceedings under Corporations Act108

123.External administration proceedings under other legislation109

124.Incorporated legal practice is subject to receivership under this Act and external administration under Corporations Act110

125.Incorporated legal practice that is subject to receivership under this Act and external administration under other legislation111

126.Cooperation between courts112

127.Relationship of Act to constitution of incorporated legal practice112

128.Relationship of Act to legislation establishing incorporated legal practice112

129.Relationship of Act to Corporations legislation112

130.Undue influence113

Division 3 — Multi‑disciplinary partnerships

131.Nature of multi‑disciplinary partnership113

132.Conduct of multi‑disciplinary partnership114

133.Notice of intention to start practice in multi‑disciplinary partnership114

134.General obligations of legal practitioner partners114

135.Obligations of legal practitioner partner relating to misconduct115

136.Actions of partner who is not Australian legal practitioner116

137.Obligations and privileges of practitioners who are partners or employees116

138.Conflicts of interest117

139.Disclosure obligations117

140.Effect of non‑disclosure on provision of certain services118

141.Application of legal profession rules119

142.Requirements relating to advertising119

143.Sharing of receipts, revenue or other income120

144.Disqualified persons120

145.Prohibition on partnerships with certain partners who are not Australian legal practitioners120

146.Undue influence121

Division 4 — Miscellaneous

147.Obligations of individual practitioners not affected122

148.Regulations122

Part 8 — Legal practice by foreign lawyers

Division 1 — Preliminary

149.Purpose124

150.Terms used124

151.This Part does not apply to Australian legal practitioners125

Division 2 — Practice of foreign law

152.Requirement for registration125

153.Entitlement of Australian‑registered foreign lawyer to practise in this jurisdiction126

154.Scope of practice126

155.Form of practice127

156.Application of Australian professional ethical and practice standards128

157.Designation129

158.Letterhead and other identifying documents130

159.Advertising131

160.Foreign lawyer employing Australian legal practitioner131

161.Trust money and trust accounts132

162.Professional indemnity insurance133

163.Fidelity cover134

Division 3 — Local registration of foreign lawyers generally

164.Local registration of foreign lawyers134

165.Duration of registration134

166.Locally registered foreign lawyer is not officer of Supreme Court135

Division 4 — Application for grant or renewal of local registration

167.Application for grant or renewal of registration135

168.Manner of application135

169.Requirements regarding applications for grant or renewal of registration136

Division 5 — Grant or renewal of registration

170.Grant or renewal of registration139

171.Requirement to grant or renew registration if criteria satisfied139

172.Refusal to grant or renew registration140

Division 6 — Amendment, suspension or cancellation of local registration

173.Application of this Division142

174.Grounds for amending, suspending or cancelling local registration142

175.Amending, suspending or cancelling registration143

176.Operation of amendment, suspension or cancellation of registration145

177.Other ways of amending or cancelling registration146

178.Relationship of this Division with Part 13146

Division 7 — Special powers in relation to local registration — show cause events

179.Applicant for local registration — show cause event147

180.Locally registered foreign lawyer — show cause event147

181.Refusal, amendment, suspension or cancellation of local registration — failure to show cause148

182.Restriction on making further applications148

183.Relationship of this Division with Part 13149

Division 8 — Further provisions relating to local registration

184.Immediate suspension of registration149

185.Automatic cancellation of registration on grant of practising certificate150

186.Suspension or cancellation of registration not to affect disciplinary processes150

187.Return of local registration certificate on amendment, suspension or cancellation of registration150

Division 9 — Conditions on registration

188.Conditions generally151

189.Conditions imposed by Board151

190.Imposition or variation of conditions pending criminal proceedings152

191.Condition regarding notification of offence153

192.Conditions imposed by legal profession rules153

193.Compliance with conditions153

Division 10 — Interstate‑registered foreign lawyers

194.Extent of entitlement of interstate‑registered foreign lawyer to practise in this jurisdiction154

195.Additional conditions on practice of interstate‑registered foreign lawyers155

196.Notification requirements for interstate‑registered foreign lawyers155

Division 11 — Miscellaneous

197.Consideration and investigation of applicants and locally registered foreign lawyers157

198.Register of locally registered foreign lawyers157

199.Publication of information about locally registered foreign lawyers158

200.SAT orders about conditions158

201.Exemption by Board158

202.Membership of professional association158

203.Review by SAT158

Part 9 — Trust money and trust accounts

Division 1 — Preliminary

204.Purposes160

205.Terms used160

206.Money involved in financial services or investments163

207.Determinations about status of money164

208.Application of Part to law practices and trust money164

209.Trust money protocols165

210.When money is received166

211.Discharge by legal practitioner associate of obligations of law practice166

212.Liability of principals of law practices167

213.Former practices, principals and associates167

Division 2 — Trust accounts and trust money

214.Maintenance of general trust account168

215.Certain trust money to be deposited in general trust account169

216.Holding, disbursing and accounting for trust money170

217.Manner of withdrawal of trust money from general trust account170

218.Controlled money171

219.Manner of withdrawal of controlled money from controlled money account172

220.Transit money172

221.Trust money subject to specific powers173

222.Trust money received in form of cash173

223.Protection of trust money174

224.Intermixing money175

225.Dealing with trust money: legal costs and unclaimed money175

226.Deficiency in trust account175

227.Reporting certain irregularities and suspected irregularities176

228.Keeping trust records177

229.False names177

Division 3 — Investigations

230.Appointment of investigators178

231.Investigations178

232.Application of Part 15179

233.Investigator’s report and confidentiality179

234.When costs of investigation are debt179

Division 4 — External examinations

235.Designation of external examiners180

236.Designation and appointment of associates as external examiners180

237.Trust records to be externally examined180

238.Examination of affairs in connection with examination of trust records181

239.Final examination of trust records181

240.Carrying out examination182

241.External examiner’s report and confidentiality183

242.Law practice liable for costs of examination183

Division 5 — Provisions relating to ADIs

243.ADI not subject to certain obligations and liabilities183

244.Reports, records and information184

Division 6 — Miscellaneous

245.Restrictions on receipt of trust money185

246.Restrictions on receipt of trust money by interstate legal practitioners186

247.Application of Part to incorporated legal practices and multi‑disciplinary partnerships186

248.Disclosure to clients — money not received or held as trust money186

249.Disclosure of accounts used to hold money entrusted to law practice or legal practitioner associate187

250.Regulations188

Part 10 — Costs disclosure and assessment

Division 1 — Preliminary

251.Purposes190

252.Terms used190

253.Terms relating to third party payers191

Division 2 — Application of this Part

254.Application of Part — first instructions rule192

255.Part also applies by agreement or at client’s election192

256.Displacement of Part193

257.How and where client first instructs law practice194

258.When matter has substantial connection with this jurisdiction194

259.What happens when different laws apply to matter195

Division 3 — Costs disclosure

260.Disclosure of costs to clients196

261.Disclosure if another law practice to be retained199

262.How and when disclosure must be made199

263.Exceptions to requirement for disclosure199

264.Additional disclosure — settlement of litigious matters202

265.Additional disclosure — uplift fees203

266.Form of disclosure203

267.Ongoing obligation to disclose203

268.Effect of failure to disclose203

269.Progress reports205

270.Disclosure to associated third party payers205

Division 4 — Legal costs generally

271.Basis on which legal costs are recoverable206

272.Security for legal costs207

273.Interest on unpaid legal costs207

Division 5 — Legal costs determinations

274.Terms used207

275.Legal costs determinations208

276.Review of costs determinations209

277.Inquiries by Legal Costs Committee209

278.Notice and submissions in respect of determination210

279.Report and publication of costs determinations211

280.Effect of costs determination211

281.Reports212

Division 6 — Costs agreements

282.Making costs agreements212

283.Conditional costs agreements213

284.Conditional costs agreements involving uplift fees215

285.Contingency fees are prohibited216

286.Effect of costs agreement216

287.Certain costs agreements void216

288.Setting aside costs agreements217

Division 7 — Billing

289.Legal costs cannot be recovered unless bill has been given220

290.Bills220

291.Notification of client’s rights222

292.Request for itemised bill223

293.Interim bills223

Division 8 — Costs assessment

294.Term used: client224

295.Application by clients or third party payers for costs assessment224

296.Application for costs assessment by law practice retaining another law practice227

297.Application for costs assessment by law practice giving bill228

298.Consequences of application228

299.Persons to be notified of application229

300.Procedure on assessment229

301.Criteria for assessment229

302.Assessment of costs by reference to costs agreement231

303.Assessment of costs by reference to costs determination231

304.Costs of assessment231

305.Certification and interest232

306.Assessment of Legal Aid Commission bill232

307.Referral for disciplinary action233

308.Review of assessment233

309.Contracting out of Division by sophisticated clients233

Division 9 — Legal Costs Committee

Subdivision 1 — Establishment

310.Legal Costs Committee233

311.Nominations234

312.Term of office235

313.Deputy chairperson235

314.Deputy members235

315.Removal and resignation236

316.Leave of absence236

317.Remuneration and allowances236

Subdivision 2 — Procedure

318.Meetings237

319.Voting237

320.Quorum237

321.Legal Costs Committee to determine procedures238

Subdivision 3 — Support and financial provisions

322.Use of staff and facilities of departments238

323.Funds239

324.Application of Financial Management Act 2006 and Auditor General Act 2006239

Division 10 — Miscellaneous

325.Application of Part to incorporated legal practices and multi‑disciplinary partnerships240

326.Imputed acts, omissions or knowledge240

Part 11 — Professional indemnity insurance

327.Terms used241

328.Regulations as to professional indemnity insurance241

329.Law Mutual (WA)243

330.Law Mutual Fund243

331.PII management committee243

332.Delegation244

Part 12 — Fidelity cover

Division 1 — Preliminary

333.Purpose245

334.Terms used245

335.Time of default247

Division 2 — Solicitors’ Guarantee Fund

336.Establishment of Guarantee Fund247

337.Payment of contributions by local legal practitioners248

338.Payment of contributions by interstate legal practitioners249

339.Levy to supplement Guarantee Fund249

340.Failure to pay levy250

341.Insurance250

342.Investment of Guarantee Fund251

343.Borrowing251

Division 3 — Fidelity cover

Subdivision 1 — Application provisions

344.Application to Australian‑registered foreign lawyers251

345.Application to incorporated legal practices252

346.Application to multi‑disciplinary partnerships252

347.Application to sole practitioners whose practising certificates lapse253

Subdivision 2 — Defaults to which this Division applies

348.Meaning of relevant jurisdiction254

349.Defaults to which this Division applies255

350.Defaults relating to financial services or investments255

Subdivision 3 — Claims about defaults

351.Claims about defaults257

352.Time limit for making claims257

353.Advertisements258

354.Time limit for making claims following advertisement259

355.Claims not affected by certain matters259

356.Investigation of claims260

357.Advance payments260

Subdivision 4 — Determination of claims

358.Determination of claims261

359.Maximum amount allowable262

360.Costs262

361.Interest263

362.Reduction of claim because of other benefits263

363.Subrogation264

364.Repayment of certain amounts265

365.Notification of delay in making decision265

366.Notification of decision265

367.Proceedings against Trust restrained266

368.Proceedings to establish claim266

369.Court proceedings267

Subdivision 5 — Payments from Guarantee Fund for defaults

370.Application of Guarantee Fund267

371.Caps on payments268

372.Sufficiency of Guarantee Fund268

Subdivision 6 — Claims by law practices or associates

373.Claims by law practices or associates about defaults270

374.Claims by law practices or associates about notional defaults270

Subdivision 7 — Defaults involving interstate elements

375.Concerted interstate defaults270

376.Defaults involving interstate elements where committed by one associate only271

Subdivision 8 — Inter‑jurisdictional provisions

377.Fidelity protocols272

378.Forwarding of claims273

379.Investigation of defaults to which this Division applies273

380.Investigation of defaults to which corresponding law applies274

381.Investigation of concerted interstate defaults and other defaults involving interstate elements274

382.Recommendations by Trust to corresponding authorities275

383.Recommendations to and decisions by Trust after receiving recommendations from corresponding authorities275

384.Request to another jurisdiction to investigate aspects of claim275

385.Request from another jurisdiction to investigate aspects of claim276

386.Cooperation with other authorities276

Division 4 — Interest on trust accounts

387.ADI to pay interest on trust accounts to Trust277

388.Application of interest278

389.Audit of expenditure280

390.Application of Financial Management Act 2006 and Auditor General Act 2006280

Division 5 — Legal Contribution Trust

391.Establishment of Trust281

392.Relationship to Crown281

393.Constitution of Trust281

394.Chairperson282

395.Deputies282

396.Vacation of office283

397.Meetings283

398.Voting284

399.Functions of Trust284

400.Execution of documents by Trust284

Part 13 — Complaints and discipline

Division 1 — Preliminary

401.Purposes286

Division 2 — Key concepts

402.Term used: unsatisfactory professional conduct286

403.Term used: professional misconduct286

404.Conduct capable of constituting unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct287

Division 3 — Application

405.Practitioners to whom this Part applies288

406.Application of Part to lawyers, former lawyers and former practitioners288

407.Conduct to which this Part applies — generally289

408.Conduct to which this Part applies — insolvency, serious offences and tax offences290

Division 4 — Complaints about Australian legal practitioners

409.Complaints291

410.Making of complaints291

411.Time of complaint292

412.Further information and verification293

413.Practitioner to be notified of complaint293

414.Submissions by practitioner294

415.Summary dismissal of complaints295

416.Withdrawal of complaint295

Division 5 — Mediation

417.Mediation of complaints297

418.Facilitation of mediation297

419.Admissibility of evidence and documents297

420.Order following mediation298

Division 6 — Investigation by Complaints Committee

421.Investigations298

422.Application of Part 15299

423.Referral of matters for costs assessment299

Division 7 — Decision of Complaints Committee

424.Decision of Complaints Committee after investigation299

425.Dismissal of complaint299

426.Summary conclusion of complaint procedure300

427.Record of decision301

428.Referrals to SAT301

429.Costs301

Division 8 — General procedural matters

430.Procedure302

431.Duty to deal with complaints efficiently and expeditiously302

432.Complainant and practitioner to be informed of action taken302

433.Parties303

434.Proceedings generally not to be public303

435.Review of Complaints Committee decision304

Division 9 — Immediate suspension of local practising certificate

436.Interim restrictions on practice304

Division 10 — Proceedings in State Administrative Tribunal

437.Constitution of SAT under this Act305

438.Jurisdiction of SAT306

439.Orders requiring official implementation in this jurisdiction307

440.Orders requiring official implementation in another jurisdiction308

441.Orders requiring compliance by practitioner308

442.Alternative finding309

443.Interlocutory and interim orders310

444.Court may punish310

445.Official notification to Board and Complaints Committee of removals from local roll310

446.Compliance with orders311

447.Other remedies not affected313

Division 11 — Compensation

448.Compensation orders313

449.Prerequisites to making of compensation orders314

450.Effect on other remedies314

Division 12 — Publicising disciplinary action

451.Terms used315

452.Register of Disciplinary Action315

453.Other means of publicising disciplinary action317

454.Quashing of disciplinary action317

455.Liability for publicising disciplinary action317

456.Disciplinary action taken because of infirmity, injury or illness318

457.Effect of secrecy provisions and non‑disclosure orders319

Division 13 — Inter‑jurisdictional provisions

458.Conduct protocols319

459.Request to another jurisdiction to investigate complaint or conduct320

460.Request from another jurisdiction to investigate complaint or conduct320

461.Sharing of information with corresponding authorities321

462.Cooperation with other authorities321

463.Compliance with recommendations or orders made under corresponding laws321

464.Other powers or functions not affected322

Division 14 — Miscellaneous

465.Jurisdiction of Supreme Court322

466.Failure to comply with orders323

467.Confidentiality of client communications323

468.Claims of privilege323

469.Waiver of privilege or duty of confidentiality324

Part 14 — External intervention

Division 1 — Preliminary

470.Purposes325

471.Terms used325

472.Application of Part to Australian‑registered foreign lawyers326

473.Application of Part to other persons326

Division 2 — Initiation of external intervention

474.Circumstances warranting external intervention327

475.Determination regarding external intervention328

Division 3 — Supervisors of trust money

476.Appointment of supervisor of trust money330

477.Notice of appointment331

478.Effect of service of notice of appointment332

479.Role of supervisor of trust money333

480.Records of and dealing with trust money of law practice under supervision335

481.Termination of supervisor’s appointment335

Division 4 — Managers

482.Appointment of manager336

483.Notice of appointment336

484.Effect of service of notice of appointment337

485.Role of manager339

486.Records and accounts of law practice under management and dealings with trust money341

487.Deceased estates341

488.Termination of manager’s appointment342

Division 5 — Receivers

489.Appointment of receiver343

490.Notice of appointment344

491.Effect of service of notice of appointment345

492.Role of receiver347

493.Records and accounts of, and dealing with trust money of, law practice under receivership349

494.Power of receiver to take possession of regulated property349

495.Power of receiver to take delivery of regulated property350

496.Power of receiver to deal with regulated property350

497.Power of receiver to require documents or information351

498.Examinations352

499.Lien for costs on regulated property352

500.Regulated property not to be attached353

501.Recovery of regulated property where there has been breach of trust353

502.Improperly destroying property355

503.Deceased estates356

504.Termination of receiver’s appointment356

Division 6 — General

505.Conditions on appointment of external intervener357

506.Status of acts of external intervener358

507.Eligibility for reappointment or authorisation358

508.Review of appointment358

509.Directions of SAT359

510.Manager and receiver appointed for law practice359

511.ADI disclosure requirements359

512.Fees, legal costs and expenses361

513.Reports by external intervener361

514.Confidentiality362

515.Provisions relating to requirements under this Part363

516.Obstruction of external intervener364

Part 15 — Provisions relating to investigations

Division 1 — Preliminary

517.Terms used365

Division 2 — Requirements relating to documents, information and other assistance

518.Application of Division366

519.Requirement to provide access to documents and information relating to affairs of law practice366

520.Requirements in relation to complaint investigations366

521.Provisions relating to requirements under this Division368

Division 3 — Entry and search of premises

522.Application of Division369

523.Investigator’s power to enter premises369

524.Search warrant370

525.Powers of investigator while on premises371

Division 4 — Additional powers in relation to incorporated legal practices

526.Application of Division373

527.Powers relating to investigations and audits to which this Division applies373

528.Examination of persons373

529.Inspection of books374

530.Power to hold hearings375

Division 5 — Miscellaneous

531.Obstruction or misleading of investigator376

532.Obligations of Australian lawyers376

533.Permitted disclosure of confidential information377

Part 16 — Regulatory authorities

Division 1 — Legal Practice Board

Subdivision 1 — Establishment

534.Board established380

535.Relationship to Crown380

536.Board members380

537.Who may vote in election381

538.Vacation of office by member381

539.Functions381

540.Powers381

541.Chairperson and deputy chairperson381

542.Casual vacancies382

Subdivision 2 — Performance

543.Presiding at meetings382

544.Quorum383

545.Voting383

546.Procedures383

547.Delegation383

Subdivision 3 — Financial and reporting provisions

548.Application of funds384

548A.Law library contributions384

549.Accounts and records386

550.Audit386

551.Annual and other reports386

Subdivision 4 — Miscellaneous

552.Committees387

553.Secretary of Board388

554.Execution of documents by Board388

Division 2 — Legal Profession Complaints Committee

Subdivision 1 — Establishment

555.Legal Profession Complaints Committee established389

556.Complaints Committee members389

557.Functions of Complaints Committee390

558.Term of appointment — representative of community391

559.Deputy chairperson391

560.Deputies of representatives of community392

561.Removal or resignation392

562.Leave of absence393

563.Termination of office may be deferred393

564.Remuneration and allowances393

565.Saving394

Subdivision 2 — Performance

566.Quorum394

567.Meetings394

568.Divisions395

569.Voting395

570.Complaints Committee may determine its own procedures395

571.Reports396

Division 3 — Law Complaints Officer and staff

572.Law Complaints Officer397

573.Delegation to Law Complaints Officer397

574.Staff398

Part 17 — Rules

Division 1 — Admission rules

575.Admission rules399

Division 2 — Legal profession rules

576.Subject‑matter of legal profession rules400

577.Rules for Australian legal practitioners400

578.Rules for Australian‑registered foreign lawyers400

579.Rules for incorporated legal practices and multi‑disciplinary partnerships400

580.Rules for Board and Complaints Committee402

Division 3 — General provisions

581.Binding nature of legal profession rules402

582.Rules inconsistent with regulations402

583.Rules are subsidiary legislation403

Part 18 — General provisions

584.Liability of principals404

585.Injunctions404

586.Disclosure of information by local regulatory authorities406

587.Confidentiality of personal information406

588.Professional privilege or duty of confidence does not affect validity or compliance with certain requirements407

589.Duty to report suspected offences408

590.Contempt of Supreme Court408

591.Protection from liability409

592.Legal proceedings410

593.Evidentiary certificates410

594.Approved forms412

595.Laying documents before House of Parliament that is not sitting412

596.Regulations413

596A.Law library414

596B.Board library assets transferred to the State415

597.Review of Act415

Part 19 — Repeal, savings, transitional and other provisions

Division 1 — Repeals

598.Legal Practice Act 2003 repealed417

599.Legal Contribution Trust Act 1967 repealed417

600.Interpretation Act 1984 not affected417

Division 2 — Savings and transitional provisions relating to repeal of Legal Practice Act 2003

601.Terms used417

602.Articles and other practical legal training417

603.Admission418

604.Existing applications for admission418

605.Roll418

606.Practising certificates418

607.Actions before commencement day that continue to have effect420

608.Restricted legal practice421

609.Foreign lawyers421

610.Incorporated legal practices422

611.Orders in relation to multi‑disciplinary partnerships422

612.Approvals under section 133 of 2003 Act422

613.Authority to receive trust money423

614.Deficiencies in trust accounts423

615.Investigations423

616.Client information and legal costs423

617.Legal costs determinations and Legal Costs Committee424

618.Legal Practice Board continued424

619.Membership of Board424

620.Complaints Committee continued425

621.Complaints and investigations under Act of prior conduct425

622.Discipline426

623.Examiners426

624.Orders under section 149 of 2003 Act426

625.Orders under section 150 of 2003 Act426

626.Appointments and authorisations under section 151 of 2003 Act427

627.Appointments under section 154 of 2003 Act427

628.Appointments and orders under section 156 of 2003 Act427

629.Board may give directions428

630.References to 1893 and 2003 Acts and related matters428

Division 3 — Savings and transitional provisions relating to repeal of Legal Contribution Trust Act 1967

631.Terms used429

632.Legal Contribution Trust continued429

633.Solicitors’ Guarantee Fund429

634.Contributions429

635.Claims for acts happening before the commencement day429

636.References to Legal Contribution Trust Act 1967430

Division 4 — Transitional regulations

637.Transitional regulations430

Notes

Compilation table432

Defined terms

 

Legal Profession Act 2008

An Act —

·to provide for the regulation of legal practice in Western Australia; and

·to facilitate the regulation of legal practice on a national basis; and

·for other related purposes.

 

 

Part 1  Preliminary

1.Short title

This is the Legal Profession Act 2008 1.

2.Commencement

This Act comes into operation as follows:

(a)Part 1 — on the day on which this Act receives the Royal Assent;

(b)the rest of the Act — on a day fixed by proclamation and different days may be fixed for different provisions 1.

Part 2  Interpretation

3.Terms used

In this Act —

accountant means a member of —

(a)The Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia (AR643BN 084 642 571); or

(b)CPA Australia (ACN 008 392 452); or

(c)the Institute of Public Accountants (ACN 004 130 643);

ADI means an authorised deposit‑taking institution as defined in the Banking Act 1959 of the Commonwealth;

admission rules means rules relating to the admission of lawyers and associated matters made under section 575;

admission to the legal profession means admission by a Supreme Court as —

(a)a lawyer; or

(b)a legal practitioner; or

(c)a barrister; or

(d)a solicitor; or

(e)a barrister and solicitor; or

(f)a solicitor and barrister,

under this Act or a corresponding law but does not include the grant of a practising certificate under this Act or a corresponding law and admitted to the legal profession has a corresponding meaning;

affairs of a law practice include the following —

(a)all accounts and records required under this Act to be maintained by the practice or an associate or former associate of the practice;

(b)other records of the practice or an associate or former associate of the practice;

(c)any transaction —

(i)to which the practice or an associate or former associate of the practice was or is a party; or

(ii)in which the practice or an associate or former associate of the practice has acted for a party;

amend includes —

(a)in relation to a practising certificate —

(i)impose a condition on the certificate; and

(ii)vary or revoke a condition already imposed on the certificate;

and

(b)in relation to registration as a foreign lawyer —

(i)amend the lawyer’s registration certificate; and

(ii)impose a condition on the registration; and

(iii)vary or revoke a condition already imposed on the registration;

approved form means a form approved by the Board;

associate has the meaning given in section 6(1);

Australian lawyer has the meaning given in section 4(a);

Australian legal practitioner has the meaning given in section 5(a) as affected by section 36(3);

Australian practising certificate means a local practising certificate or an interstate practising certificate;

Australian‑registered foreign lawyer means a locally registered foreign lawyer or an interstate‑registered foreign lawyer;

Australian roll means the local roll or an interstate roll;

barrister means an Australian legal practitioner who engages in legal practice solely as a barrister;

Board means the Legal Practice Board established under section 534;

client includes a person to whom or for whom legal services are provided;

compensation order means an order referred to in section 448;

complaint means a complaint under Part 13;

Complaints Committee means the committee established under section 555;

compliance certificate has the meaning given in section 31;

condition means condition, limitation or restriction;

conduct means conduct whether consisting of an act or omission;

conviction has the meaning given in section 10;

corporation means —

(a)a company as defined in the Corporations Act section 9; or

(b)any other body corporate, or body corporate of a kind, prescribed by the regulations;

Corporations Act means the Corporations Act 2001 of the Commonwealth;

corresponding authority means —

(a)a person or body having functions under a corresponding law; or

(b)when used in the context of a person or body having functions under this Act (the local authority) —

(i)a person or body having corresponding functions under a corresponding law; and

(ii)without limiting subparagraph (i), if the functions of the local authority relate to local lawyers or local legal practitioners generally or are limited to any particular class of local lawyers or local legal practitioners — a person or body having corresponding functions under a corresponding law regardless of whether they relate to interstate lawyers or interstate legal practitioners generally or are limited to any particular class of interstate lawyers or interstate legal practitioners;

corresponding disciplinary body means —

(a)a body having functions under a corresponding law that correspond to any of the functions of the Complaints Committee; or

(b)a court or tribunal having functions under a corresponding law that correspond to any of the functions of the Complaints Committee, State Administrative Tribunal or Supreme Court in relation to the control and discipline of any Australian lawyers; or

(c)the Supreme Court of another jurisdiction exercising —

(i)its inherent jurisdiction or powers in relation to the control and discipline of any Australian lawyers; or

(ii)its jurisdiction or powers to make orders under a corresponding law of the other jurisdiction in relation to any Australian lawyers;

corresponding foreign law means —

(a)a law of a foreign country that corresponds to the relevant provisions of this Act or, if a regulation is made declaring a law of the foreign country to be a law that corresponds to this Act, the law declared under that regulation for the foreign country; or

(b)if the term is used in relation to a matter that happened before the commencement of the law of a foreign country that, under paragraph (a), is the corresponding law for the foreign country, a previous law applying to legal practice in the foreign country;

corresponding law means —

(a)a law of another jurisdiction that corresponds to the relevant provisions of this Act or, if a regulation is made declaring a law of another jurisdiction to be a law that corresponds to this Act, the law declared under that regulation for the other jurisdiction; or

(b)if the term is used in relation to a matter that happened before the commencement of the law of another jurisdiction that, under paragraph (a), is the corresponding law for the other jurisdiction, a previous law applying to legal practice in the other jurisdiction;

director means —

(a)in relation to a company within the meaning given in the Corporations Act — a director as defined in section 9 of that Act; or

(b)in relation to any other body corporate, or body corporate of a kind, prescribed by the regulations — a person specified or described in the regulations;

disqualified person means any of the following persons, whether the thing that has happened to the person happened before or after the commencement of this definition —

(a)a person whose name has (whether or not at his or her own request) been removed from an Australian roll and who has not subsequently been admitted or re‑admitted to the legal profession under this Act or a corresponding law;

(b)a person whose Australian practising certificate has been suspended or cancelled under this Act or a corresponding law and who, because of the cancellation, is not an Australian legal practitioner or in relation to whom that suspension has not finished;

(c)a person who has been refused a renewal of an Australian practising certificate under this Act or a corresponding law, and to whom an Australian practising certificate has not been granted at a later time;

(d)a person who is the subject of an order under this Act or a corresponding law prohibiting a law practice from employing or paying the person in connection with the relevant practice;

(e)a person who is the subject of an order under this Act or a corresponding law prohibiting an Australian legal practitioner from being a partner of the person in a business that includes the practitioner’s practice;

(f)a person who is subject to an order under section 120 or 145 or under provisions of a corresponding law that correspond to section 120 or 145;

document means any record of information, and includes —

(a)anything on which there is writing; and

(b)anything on which there are marks, figures, symbols or perforations having a meaning for persons qualified to interpret them; and

(c)anything from which sounds, images or writings can be reproduced with or without the aid of anything else; and

(d)a map, plan, drawing or photograph,

and a reference in this Act to a document (as so defined) includes a reference to —

(e)any part of the document; and

(f)any copy, reproduction or duplicate of the document or of any part of the document; and

(g)any part of such a copy, reproduction or duplicate;

engage in legal practice includes practise law;

external examination means an external examination under Part 9 Division 4 of a law practice’s trust records;

external examiner means a person holding an appointment as an external examiner under Part 9 Division 4;

external territory means a Territory of the Commonwealth (not being the Australian Capital Territory, the Jervis Bay Territory or the Northern Territory of Australia) for the government of which as a Territory provision is made by a Commonwealth Act;

foreign country means —

(a)a country other than Australia; or

(b)a state, province or other part of a country other than Australia;

foreign regulatory action taken in relation to a person means —

(a)removal of the person’s name from a foreign roll for disciplinary reasons; or

(b)suspension or cancellation of, or refusal to renew, the person’s right to engage in legal practice in a foreign country;

foreign roll means an official roll of lawyers (whether admitted, practising or otherwise) kept in a foreign country, but does not include a roll prescribed by the regulations or a kind of roll prescribed by the regulations;

grant of a practising certificate includes the issue of a practising certificate;

Guarantee Fund means the Solicitor’s Guarantee Fund established under section 336;

home jurisdiction has the meaning given in section 7;

incorporated legal practice has the meaning given in Part 7 Division 2;

information notice has the meaning given in section 9;

insolvent under administration means —

(a)a person who is an undischarged bankrupt under the Bankruptcy Act 1966 of the Commonwealth (or the corresponding provisions of the law of a foreign country or external territory); or

(b)a person who has executed a deed of arrangement under Part X of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 of the Commonwealth (or the corresponding provisions of the law of a foreign country or external territory) if the terms of the deed have not been fully complied with; or

(c)a person whose creditors have accepted a composition under Part X of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 of the Commonwealth (or the corresponding provisions of the law of a foreign country or external territory) if a final payment has not been made under that composition; or

(d)a person for whom a debt agreement has been made under Part IX of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 of the Commonwealth (or the corresponding provisions of the law of a foreign country or external territory) if the debt agreement has not ended or has not been terminated; or

(e)a person who has executed a personal insolvency agreement under Part X of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 of the Commonwealth (or the corresponding provisions of the law of a foreign country or external territory) but not if the agreement has been set aside or terminated or all of the obligations that the agreement created have been discharged;

interstate government lawyer has the meaning given in section 79(1);

interstate lawyer has the meaning given in section 4(c);

interstate legal practitioner has the meaning given in section 5(c);

interstate practising certificate means a current practising certificate granted under a corresponding law;

interstate‑registered foreign lawyer means a person who is registered as a foreign lawyer under a corresponding law;

interstate regulatory authority means, in relation to another jurisdiction —

(a)if there is only one regulatory authority for the jurisdiction — that regulatory authority unless subparagraph (c) applies; or

(b)if there are separate regulatory authorities for the jurisdiction for different branches of the legal profession or for persons who practise in a particular style of legal practice — the regulatory authority relevant to the branch or style concerned unless subparagraph (c) applies; or

(c)if the regulations specify or provide for the determination of one or more regulatory authorities for the jurisdiction either generally or for particular purposes — the regulatory authority or authorities specified in or determined in accordance with the regulations;

interstate roll means a roll of lawyers maintained under a corresponding law;

jurisdiction means a State or Territory of the Commonwealth;

Law Complaints Officer means the person holding the office of that name under section 572;

law firm means a partnership consisting only of —

(a)Australian legal practitioners; or

(b)one or more Australian legal practitioners and one or more Australian‑registered foreign lawyers;

law practice means —

(a)an Australian legal practitioner who is a sole practitioner; or

(b)a law firm; or

(c)a multi‑disciplinary partnership; or

(d)an incorporated legal practice;

Law Society means the Law Society of Western Australia (Inc.);

lay associate has the meaning given in section 6(2)(b);

legal costs means amounts that a person has been or may be charged by, or is or may become liable to pay to, a law practice for the provision of legal services including disbursements but not including interest;

legal practitioner associate has the meaning given in section 6(2)(a);

legal practitioner director, in relation to an incorporated legal practice, has the meaning given in Part 7 Division 1;

legal practitioner partner, in relation to a multi‑disciplinary partnership, has the meaning given in Part 7 Division 1;

legal profession rules means rules relating to legal practice made under this Act;

legal services means work done, or business transacted, in the ordinary course of legal practice;

local lawyer has the meaning given in section 4(b);

local legal practitioner has the meaning given in section 5(b) as affected by section 36(3);

local practising certificate means a practising certificate granted under this Act;

local regulatory authority means —

(a)an authority having functions under this Act; or

(b)a person or body prescribed by the regulations as a local regulatory authority;

local roll has the meaning given in section 28(1);

locally registered foreign lawyer means a person who is registered as a foreign lawyer under Part 8;

managed investment scheme has the same meaning as in the Corporations Act Chapter 5C;

modifications includes modifications by way of alteration, omission, addition or substitution;

mortgage means an instrument under which an interest in real property is charged, encumbered or transferred as security for the payment or repayment of money, and includes —

(a)any instrument of a kind that is prescribed by the regulations as being a mortgage; and

(b)a proposed mortgage;

mortgage financing means facilitating a loan secured or intended to be secured by mortgage by —

(a)acting as an intermediary to match a prospective lender and borrower; or

(b)arranging the loan; or

(c)receiving or dealing with payments for the purposes of, or under, the loan,

but does not include providing legal advice or preparing an instrument for the loan;

multi‑disciplinary partnership has the meaning given in Part 7 Division 3;

practical legal training means either, or a combination of both, of the following —

(a)legal training by participation in course work;

(b)supervised legal training, whether involving articles of clerkship or otherwise;

previous Act means —

(a)the Legal Practice Act 2003;

(b)the Legal Practitioners Act 1893;

principal has the meaning given in section 6(3);

Principal Registrar has the meaning given in the Supreme Court Act 1935 section 4(1);

professional misconduct has the meaning given in section 403;

serious offence means an offence (whether committed in or outside this jurisdiction) that is —

(a)an indictable offence against a law of the Commonwealth or any jurisdiction (whether or not the offence is or may be dealt with summarily); or

(b)an offence against the law of another jurisdiction that would be an indictable offence against a law of this jurisdiction if committed in this jurisdiction (whether or not the offence could be dealt with summarily if committed in this jurisdiction); or

(c)an offence against the law of a foreign country that would be an indictable offence against a law of the Commonwealth or this jurisdiction if committed in this jurisdiction (whether or not the offence could be dealt with summarily if committed in this jurisdiction);

show cause event, in relation to a person, means —

(a)the person becoming bankrupt or being served with notice of a creditor’s petition presented to the Court under the Bankruptcy Act 1966 of the Commonwealth section 43; or

(b)the presentation by the person (as a debtor) of a declaration to the Official Receiver under the Bankruptcy Act 1966 of the Commonwealth section 54A of his or her intention to present a debtor’s petition or his or her presentation (as a debtor) of such a petition under section 55 of that Act; or

(c)the application by the person to take the benefit of any law for the relief of bankrupt or insolvent debtors, compounding with his or her creditors or making an assignment of his or her remuneration for their benefit; or

(d)the conviction of the person for a serious offence or a tax offence, whether or not —

(i)the offence was committed in or outside this jurisdiction; or

(ii)the offence was committed while the person was engaging in legal practice as an Australian legal practitioner or was practising foreign law as an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer, as the case requires; or

(iii)other persons are prohibited from disclosing the identity of the offender;

sole practitioner means an Australian lawyer who engages in legal practice on his or her own account;

suitability matter has the meaning given in section 8;

supervised legal practice means legal practice by a person who is an Australian legal practitioner —

(a)as an employee of a law practice if —

(i)at least one partner, legal practitioner director or other employee of the law practice is an Australian legal practitioner who holds an unrestricted practising certificate; and

(ii)the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner referred to in subparagraph (i);

or

(b)as a partner in a law firm if —

(i)at least one other partner is an Australian legal practitioner who holds an unrestricted practising certificate; and

(ii)the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner referred to in subparagraph (i);

or

(c)as a WA government lawyer if the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of —

(i)the State Solicitor; or

(ii)the Director of Legal Aid appointed under the Legal Aid Commission Act 1976 section 18; or

(iii)the Director of Public Prosecutions appointed under the Director of Public Prosecutions Act 1991 section 5; or

(iv)the holder of an office prescribed by regulations for the purposes of this paragraph;

or

(d)as an interstate government lawyer if the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of —

(i)a person acting as a Director of the Australian Government Solicitor established under Part VIIIB Division 2 of the Judiciary Act 1903 of the Commonwealth; or

(ii)a General Counsel or Regional General Counsel of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission; or

(iii)the holder of an office prescribed by regulations for the purposes of this paragraph;

or

(e)as an employee of a body that carries on a business other than the practice of law if the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner who holds an unrestricted practising certificate; or

(f)in a capacity approved for the purposes of this paragraph under a legal profession rule;

Supreme Court (full bench) means the Supreme Court constituted by at least 3 judges;

tax offence means an offence under the Taxation Administration Act 1953 of the Commonwealth, whether committed in or outside this jurisdiction;

taxing officer means a taxing officer of the Supreme Court;

this jurisdiction means this State;

Trust means the Legal Contribution Trust established under section 391;

trust account has the meaning given in section 205(1);

trust money has the meaning given in section 205(1);

trust property means property entrusted to a law practice in the course of or in connection with the provision of legal services by the practice, but does not include trust money or money referred to in section 206;

trust records has the meaning given in section 205(1);

unrestricted practising certificate means an Australian practising certificate that is not subject to any condition under this Act or a corresponding law requiring the holder to engage in supervised legal practice or restricting the holder to practise as or in the manner of a barrister;

unsatisfactory professional conduct has the meaning given in section 402;

WA government lawyer has the meaning given in section 36(1).

[Section 3 amended: No. 17 of 2014 s. 15.]

4.Terms relating to lawyers

For the purposes of this Act —

(a)an Australian lawyer is a person who is admitted to the legal profession under this Act or a corresponding law; and

(b)a local lawyer is a person who is admitted to the legal profession under this Act (whether or not the person is also admitted under a corresponding law); and

(c)an interstate lawyer is a person who is admitted to the legal profession under a corresponding law, but not under this Act.

5.Terms relating to legal practitioners

For the purposes of this Act —

(a)an Australian legal practitioner is an Australian lawyer who holds a current local practising certificate or a current interstate practising certificate; and

(b)a local legal practitioner is an Australian lawyer who holds a current local practising certificate; and

(c)an interstate legal practitioner is an Australian lawyer who holds a current interstate practising certificate, but not a local practising certificate.

6.Terms relating to associates and principals of law practices

(1)For the purposes of this Act, an associate of a law practice is —

(a)an Australian legal practitioner who is —

(i)a sole practitioner (in the case of a law practice constituted by the practitioner); or

(ii)a partner in the law practice (in the case of a law firm); or

(iii)a legal practitioner director in the law practice (in the case of an incorporated legal practice); or

(iv)a legal practitioner partner in the law practice (in the case of a multi‑disciplinary partnership); or

(v)an employee of, or consultant to, the law practice;

or

(b)an agent of the law practice who is not an Australian legal practitioner; or

(c)an employee of the law practice who is not an Australian legal practitioner; or

(d)an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer who is a partner in the law practice; or

(e)a person (not being an Australian legal practitioner) who is a partner in a multi‑disciplinary partnership; or

(f)an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer who has a relationship with the law practice, being a relationship that is of a class prescribed by the regulations; or

(g)a person (not being an Australian legal practitioner) who is a partner in a business that includes the law practice; or

(h)a person (not being an Australian legal practitioner) who shares the receipts, revenue or other income arising from the law practice.

(2)For the purposes of this Act —

(a)a legal practitioner associate of a law practice is an associate of the practice who is an Australian legal practitioner; and

(b)a lay associate of a law practice is an associate of the practice who is not an Australian legal practitioner.

(3)For the purposes of this Act, a principal of a law practice is an Australian legal practitioner who is —

(a)a sole practitioner (in the case of a law practice constituted by the practitioner); or

(b)a partner in the law practice (in the case of a law firm); or

(c)a legal practitioner director in the law practice (in the case of an incorporated legal practice); or

(d)a legal practitioner partner in the law practice (in the case of a multi‑disciplinary partnership).

7.Home jurisdiction

(1)This section has effect for the purposes of this Act.

(2)The home jurisdiction for an Australian legal practitioner is the jurisdiction in which the practitioner’s only or most recent current Australian practising certificate was granted.

(3)The home jurisdiction for an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer is the jurisdiction in which the lawyer’s only or most recent current registration was granted.

(4)The home jurisdiction for an associate of a law practice who is neither an Australian legal practitioner nor an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer is —

(a)where only one jurisdiction is the home jurisdiction for the only associate of the practice who is an Australian legal practitioner or for all the associates of the practice who are Australian legal practitioners — that jurisdiction; or

(b)where no one jurisdiction is the home jurisdiction for all the associates of the practice who are Australian legal practitioners —

(i)the jurisdiction in which the office is situated at which the associate performs most of the associate’s duties for the law practice; or

(ii)if a jurisdiction cannot be determined under subparagraph (i) — the jurisdiction in which the associate is enrolled under a law of the jurisdiction to vote at elections for the jurisdiction; or

(iii)if a jurisdiction can be determined under neither subparagraph (i) nor subparagraph (ii) — the jurisdiction determined in accordance with criteria specified or referred to in the regulations.

8.Suitability matters

(1)Each of the following is a suitability matter in relation to an individual —

(a)whether the person is currently of good fame and character;

(b)whether the person is or has been an insolvent under administration;

(c)whether the person has been convicted of an offence in Australia or a foreign country, and if so —

(i)the nature of the offence; and

(ii)how long ago the offence was committed; and

(iii)the person’s age when the offence was committed;

(d)whether the person has engaged in legal practice in Australia —

(i)unlawfully; or

(ii)when not admitted, or not holding a practising certificate, as required under this Act or a previous law of this jurisdiction that corresponds to this Act or under a corresponding law; or

(iii)if holding an Australian practising certificate, in contravention of a condition of the certificate or while the certificate was suspended;

(e)whether the person has practised law in a foreign country —

(i)when not permitted under a law of that country to do so; or

(ii)if permitted to do so, in contravention of a condition applicable to the permission;

(f)whether the person is currently subject to an unresolved complaint, investigation, charge or order under any of the following —

(i)this Act or a previous Act;

(ii)a corresponding law or corresponding foreign law;

(g)whether the person —

(i)is the subject of current disciplinary action, however expressed, in another profession or occupation in Australia or a foreign country; or

(ii)has been the subject of disciplinary action, however expressed, relating to another profession or occupation that involved a finding of guilt;

(h)whether the person’s name has been removed from —

(i)the local roll, and has not since been restored to or entered on a local roll; or

(ii)an interstate roll, and has not since been restored to or entered on an interstate roll; or

(iii)a foreign roll;

(i)whether the person’s right to engage in legal practice has been suspended or cancelled in Australia or a foreign country;

(j)whether the person has contravened, in Australia or a foreign country, a law about trust money or trust accounts;

(k)whether, under this Act, a previous Act, a law of the Commonwealth or a corresponding law, a supervisor, manager or receiver, however described, is or has been appointed in relation to any legal practice engaged in by the person;

(l)whether the person is or has been subject to an order under this Act, a previous Act, a law of the Commonwealth or a corresponding law, disqualifying the applicant from being employed by, or a partner of, an Australian legal practitioner or from managing a corporation that is an incorporated legal practice;

(m)whether the person is currently unable to carry out the inherent requirements of practice as an Australian legal practitioner.

(2)A matter mentioned in subsection (1) is a suitability matter even if it happened before the commencement of this section.

9.Information notices

For the purposes of this Act, an information notice is a written notice to a person about a decision stating —

(a)the decision; and

(b)the reasons for the decision; and

(c)the rights of appeal or review available to the person in respect of the decision and the period within which any such appeal or review must be made or applied for.

10.References to conviction and quashing conviction

(1)A reference in this Act to a conviction includes a finding of guilt, or the acceptance of a guilty plea, whether or not a conviction is recorded.

(2)Without limiting subsection (1), a reference in this Act to the quashing of a conviction for an offence includes a reference to the quashing of —

(a)a finding of guilt in relation to the offence; or

(b)the acceptance of a guilty plea in relation to the offence.

(3)However, a reference in this Act to the quashing of a conviction for an offence does not include a reference to the quashing of a conviction where —

(a)a finding of guilt in relation to the offence; or

(b)the acceptance of a guilty plea in relation to the offence,

remains unaffected.

(4)A conviction includes a conviction before the commencement of this section.

Part 3 — Reservation of legal work and related matters

Division 1 — Preliminary

11.Purposes

The purposes of this Part are as follows —

(a)to protect the public interest in the proper administration of justice by ensuring that legal work is carried out only by those who are properly qualified to do so;

(b)to protect consumers by ensuring that persons carrying out legal work are entitled to do so.

Division 2 — General prohibitions on unqualified practice

12.Prohibition on engaging in legal practice when not entitled

(1)In this section —

legal work means —

(a)any work in connection with the administration of law; or

(b)drawing or preparing any deed, instrument or writing relating to or in any manner dealing with or affecting —

(i)real or personal estate or any interest in real or personal estate; or

(ii)any proceedings at law, civil or criminal, or in equity;

public officer has the meaning given in The Criminal Code.

(2)A person must not engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction unless the person is an Australian legal practitioner.

Penalty: a fine of $20 000.

(3)Subsection (2) does not apply to engaging in legal practice of the following kinds —

(a)legal practice engaged in under the authority of a law of this jurisdiction or of the Commonwealth;

(b)legal practice engaged in by an incorporated legal practice in accordance with Part 7 Division 2;

(c)the practice of foreign law by an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer in accordance with Part 8;

(d)appearing or defending in person in a court;

(e)drawing or preparing a transfer under the Transfer of Land Act 1893;

(f)a public officer doing legal work in the course of his or her duties;

(g)a person doing legal work under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner, as a paid employee of a law practice or in the course of approved legal training;

(h)legal practice of a kind prescribed by the regulations.

(4)It is a defence to a prosecution for an offence against subsection (2) in relation to the doing of legal work to show that the person who did the legal work has not directly or indirectly been paid or remunerated or promised or expected pay or remuneration for the work so done (the unpaid work).

(5)Subsection (4) does not apply if the person directly or indirectly receives, expects or is promised, pay or remuneration for or in respect of other work or services relating to, connected with or arising out of the same transaction or subject matter as that to which the unpaid work relates.

(6)A person is not entitled to recover any amount in respect of anything the person did in contravention of subsection (2).

(7)A person may recover from another person in a court of competent jurisdiction, as a debt due to the person, any amount the person paid to the other person in respect of anything the other person did in contravention of subsection (2).

(8)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the application (with or without specified modifications) of provisions of this Act to persons engaged in legal practice of a kind referred to in subsection (3) (other than subsection (3)(a) and (b)).

13.Prohibition on representing or advertising entitlement to engage in legal practice when not entitled

(1)A person must not represent or advertise that the person is entitled to engage in legal practice unless the person is an Australian legal practitioner.

Penalty: a fine of $20 000.

(2)A director, officer, employee or agent of a body corporate must not represent or advertise that the body corporate is entitled to engage in legal practice unless the body corporate is an incorporated legal practice.

Penalty: a fine of $20 000.

(3)Subsections (1) and (2) do not apply to a representation or advertisement about being entitled to engage in legal practice of a kind referred to in section 12(3).

(4)A reference in this section to a person —

(a)representing or advertising that the person is entitled to engage in legal practice; or

(b)representing or advertising that a body corporate is entitled to engage in legal practice,

includes a reference to the person doing anything that states or implies that the person or the body corporate is entitled to engage in legal practice.

14.Presumptions about taking or using name, title or description specified in regulations

(1)This section applies to the following names, titles and descriptions —

(a)lawyer;

(b)legal practitioner;

(c)barrister;

(d)solicitor;

(e)attorney;

(f)counsel;

(g)Queen’s Counsel;

(h)King’s Counsel;

(i)Her Majesty’s Counsel;

(j)His Majesty’s Counsel;

(k)Senior Counsel.

(2)The regulations may specify the kind of persons who are entitled, and the circumstances in which they are entitled, to take or use a name, title or description to which this section applies.

(3)For the purposes of section 13(1), the taking or using of a name, title or description to which this section applies by a person who is not entitled to take or use that name, title or description gives rise to a rebuttable presumption that the person represented that the person is entitled to engage in legal practice.

(4)For the purposes of section 13(2), the taking or using of a name, title or description to which this section applies by a person in relation to a body corporate, of which the person is a director, officer, employee or agent, gives rise to a rebuttable presumption that the person represented that the body corporate is entitled to engage in legal practice.

15.Associates who are disqualified or convicted persons

(1)In this section —

lay associate of a law practice has the meaning given in section 6(2)(b) and includes a consultant to the law practice (however described) who —

(a)is not an Australian legal practitioner; and

(b)provides legal or related services to the law practice, other than services of a kind prescribed by the regulations.

(2)A law practice must not have a lay associate whom any principal or other legal practitioner associate of the practice knows to be —

(a)an Australian lawyer; or

(b)a disqualified person; or

(c)a person who has been convicted of a serious offence,

unless the lay associate is approved by the Board under subsection (3).

(3)The Board may, on application by a law practice or the lay associate, approve a lay associate for the purposes of this section.

(4)An approval under this section may be subject to specified conditions.

(5)If the Board decides to refuse an application for approval, or to grant the approval subject to conditions, the applicant may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for a review of the decision.

(6)A disqualified person, or a person convicted of a serious offence, must not become or seek to become a lay associate of a law practice unless the person first informs the law practice of the disqualification or conviction.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(7)Proceedings for an offence under subsection (6) may only be brought within 6 months after discovery of the offence by the Board.

(8)This section does not apply in circumstances prescribed by the regulations.

16.Sharing income with unqualified persons

Without limiting sections 116 and 143, an Australian legal practitioner may share with any other person the receipts, revenue or other income arising from the provision of legal services by the practitioner, except to the extent (if any) that the regulations or legal profession rules otherwise provide.

17.Permitting or assisting unqualified persons to practise

An Australian legal practitioner must not permit or assist a person who is not an Australian legal practitioner to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction in contravention of this Act.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

Division 3 — General

18.Prohibited person must not act as executor or trustee

(1)In this section —

prohibited person means either of the following persons, whether the thing that has happened to the person happened before or after the commencement of this section —

(a)a person whose name has (whether or not at his or her own request) been removed from an Australian roll and who has not subsequently been admitted or re‑admitted to the legal profession under this Act or a corresponding law;

(b)a person whose Australian practising certificate has been suspended or cancelled under this Act or a corresponding law and who, because of the cancellation, is not an Australian legal practitioner or in relation to whom that suspension has not finished.

(2)A prohibited person must not hold or obtain the office of executor or trustee of any will or trust without the leave of the Supreme Court.

(3)Nothing in subsection (2) —

(a)operates in respect of a person holding the office of executor pursuant to probate granted by the Supreme Court before the coming into operation of this section; or

(b)affects or invalidates any act by a person purporting to act as the holder of an office of executor or trustee when prohibited from so acting under subsection (2).

19.Professional discipline

(1)A contravention of this Part by an Australian lawyer who is not an Australian legal practitioner is capable of constituting unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct.

(2)Nothing in this Part affects any liability that a person who is an Australian lawyer (but not an Australian legal practitioner) may have under Part 13, and the person may be punished for an offence under this Part as well as being dealt with under Part 13 in relation to the same matter.

Part 4 — Admission of local lawyers

Division 1 — Preliminary

20.Purposes

The purposes of this Part are as follows —

(a)in the interests of the administration of justice and for the protection of consumers of legal services, to provide a system under which only applicants who have appropriate academic qualifications and practical legal training and who are otherwise fit and proper persons to be admitted are qualified for admission to the legal profession in this jurisdiction;

(b)to provide for the recognition of equivalent qualifications and training that make applicants eligible for admission to the legal profession in other jurisdictions.

Division 2 — Eligibility and suitability for admission

21.Eligibility for admission

(1)In this section —

approved academic qualifications means academic qualifications that are approved, under the admission rules, for admission to the legal profession in this jurisdiction;

approved practical legal training requirements means legal training requirements that are approved, under the admission rules, for admission to the legal profession in this jurisdiction;

corresponding academic qualifications means academic qualifications that would qualify the person for admission to the legal profession in another jurisdiction if the Board is satisfied that substantially the same minimum criteria apply for the approval of academic qualifications for admission in the other jurisdiction as apply in this jurisdiction;

corresponding practical legal training requirements means legal training requirements that would qualify the person for admission to the legal profession in another jurisdiction if the Board is satisfied that substantially the same minimum criteria apply for the approval of legal training requirements for admission in the other jurisdiction as apply in this jurisdiction.

(2)A person is eligible for admission to the legal profession under this Act only if the person —

(a)is an individual aged 18 years or more; and

(b)has attained approved academic qualifications or corresponding academic qualifications; and

(c)has satisfactorily completed approved practical legal training requirements or corresponding practical legal training requirements.

[Section 21 amended: No. 47 of 2011 s. 27.]

22.Suitability for admission

(1)The Supreme Court or Board must, in deciding if a person is a fit and proper person to be admitted to the legal profession, consider —

(a)each of the suitability matters in relation to the person to the extent that a suitability matter is appropriate; and

(b)any other matter it considers relevant.

(2)However, the Supreme Court or Board may consider a person to be a fit and proper person to be admitted despite a suitability matter because of the circumstances relating to that matter.

23.Early consideration of suitability

(1)In this section —

applicant for admission means an applicant for admission to the legal profession under this Act;

prospective applicant for admission means a person who is undertaking or is eligible to undertake or has completed a course of legal studies but who is not an applicant for admission;

relevant person means —

(a)an applicant for admission; or

(b)a prospective applicant for admission; or

(c)another person who has a sufficient interest in applying for a declaration under this section.

(2)A relevant person may apply to the Board for a declaration that a matter disclosed (including, for example, a suitability matter) either in —

(a)the application for the declaration; or

(b)an undecided application for admission to the legal profession under this Act,

will not, without more, adversely affect an assessment by the Board as to whether the person is a fit and proper person to be admitted.

(3)The Board must consider each application under this section and, subject to section 24, make the declaration sought or refuse to do so.

(4)A declaration made under this section is binding on the Board unless the applicant failed to make a full and fair disclosure of all matters relevant to the declaration sought.

(5)Any costs of the Board under this section are to be borne by the person who made the application for the declaration.

(6)If the Board refuses to make the declaration sought, the applicant for the declaration may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for a review of the decision.

24.Referral of matters to SAT

(1)The Board may refer to the State Administrative Tribunal any application for a declaration under section 23 if, in the opinion of the Board, it would be appropriate for the Tribunal to consider the application having regard to the seriousness of matters disclosed by or ascertained about the applicant for admission or prospective applicant for admission.

(2)Without limiting the powers of the State Administrative Tribunal under the State Administrative Tribunal Act 2004, the Tribunal may exercise any of the powers of the Board when dealing with an application referred to it under this section.

(3)A decision by the Tribunal is binding on the Board and the Tribunal unless the applicant failed to make a full and fair disclosure of all matters relevant to the decision.

(4)Any costs of the Board, and the costs of a proceeding in the Tribunal, under this section are to be borne by the person who made the application for the declaration under section 23.

Division 3 — Admission to the legal profession

25.Application for admission

(1)A person may apply to the Supreme Court (full bench) to be admitted to the legal profession.

(2)An application must be made in accordance with the admission rules.

26.Admission by Supreme Court

(1)The Supreme Court (full bench) may admit a person as a lawyer if —

(a)the Supreme Court (full bench) is satisfied that the person —

(i)is eligible for admission to the legal profession; and

(ii)is a fit and proper person to be admitted to the legal profession;

and

(b)the person takes an oath of office, or an affirmation of office, in the form required by the Supreme Court.

(2)For the purposes of subsection (1)(a), the Supreme Court (full bench) may rely on the advice of the Board.

(3)The advice of the Board may be contained in a compliance certificate.

(4)The Supreme Court (full bench) may refuse —

(a)to consider an application for admission if it is not made in accordance with the admission rules; or

(b)to admit the person if the person has not complied with the admission rules.

27.Objection to admission

(1)Any person who has reasonable grounds to do so may object to the admission of a person to the legal profession.

(2)A notice stating the grounds of the objection must be lodged in the Supreme Court not less than 7 days before the day on which the application for admission is to be heard.

(3)A person who lodges a notice of objection is entitled to appear at any hearing held to determine the objection.

28.Roll of persons admitted to legal profession

(1)The Supreme Court must maintain a roll of persons admitted to the legal profession under this Act (the local roll).

(2)When a person is admitted under this Act, the person’s name must be entered on the local roll.

(3)A person admitted to the legal profession under this Act must sign the local roll.

(4)The admission of a person under this Act is effective from the time the person signs the local roll.

(5)The Principal Registrar must forward to the Board the name, date of birth and date of admission of each person admitted under this Act as soon as practicable after the person has signed the local roll.

29.Local lawyer is an officer of Supreme Court

(1)A person becomes an officer of the Supreme Court on being admitted to the legal profession under this Act.

(2)A person ceases to be an officer of the Supreme Court under subsection (1) if the person’s name is removed from the local roll.

Division 4 — Functions of Legal Practice Board in relation to admissions

30.Board to advise on applications for admission

The Board must —

(a)consider applications by persons for admission to the legal profession under this Act; and

(b)advise the Supreme Court as to whether it considers that —

(i)the applicant is eligible for admission; and

(ii)the applicant is a fit and proper person to be admitted; and

(iii)the application is in accordance with the admission rules.

31.Compliance certificates

(1)If, after considering an application for admission to the legal profession, the Board considers that —

(a)the applicant is —

(i)eligible for admission; and

(ii)a fit and proper person to be admitted;

and

(b)the application is in accordance with the admission rules; and

(c)there are no grounds for refusing to give a certificate of the matters mentioned in paragraphs (a) and (b) (a compliance certificate),

the Board must, within the time specified in or determined in accordance with the admission rules, advise the Supreme Court to that effect by filing a compliance certificate.

(2)If the Board refuses to give a compliance certificate to an applicant, the Board must, within the time specified in or determined in accordance with the admission rules, give the Supreme Court and the applicant an information notice about the refusal.

(3)An applicant may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for a review of a decision of the Board to refuse to give the applicant a compliance certificate.

(4)The Board is taken to have refused to give a compliance certificate if a compliance certificate has neither been given to the applicant nor refused within 6 months after —

(a)if the Board has given the applicant a notice under section 32 — the applicant has complied with the notice to the Board’s satisfaction; or

(b)if paragraph (a) does not apply — the application for admission was lodged.

32.Consideration of applicant’s eligibility and suitability

(1)To help the Board consider the matters referred to in section 31(1), the Board may, by notice to the applicant, require —

(a)the applicant to give the Board specified documents or information; or

(b)the applicant to cooperate with any inquiries by the Board that it considers appropriate.

(2)An applicant’s failure to comply with a notice under subsection (1) by the date specified in the notice and in the way required by the notice is a ground for refusing to give a compliance certificate for the applicant.

(3)The Board may refer a matter to the State Administrative Tribunal for directions.

Division 5 — Miscellaneous

33.Board is respondent to application under this Part

The Board is taken to be a respondent to every application under this Part not made by it.

Part 5 — Legal practice by Australian legal practitioners

Division 1 — Preliminary

34.Purposes

The purposes of this Part are as follows —

(a)to facilitate the national practice of law by ensuring that Australian legal practitioners can engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction;

(b)to provide a system for the granting and renewing of local practising certificates.

Division 2 — Legal practice in this jurisdiction by Australian legal practitioners

35.Entitlement of Australian legal practitioner to practise in this jurisdiction

An Australian legal practitioner is, subject to this Act, entitled to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction.

36.WA government lawyers taken to be local legal practitioners

(1)In this section —

employing authority of a WA government lawyer means —

(a)the employing authority of the lawyer under the Public Sector Management Act 1994; or

(b)if the lawyer does not have an employing authority under that Act, the employing authority of the lawyer specified in the regulations for the purposes of this definition;

government agency means —

(a)a body, whether corporate or unincorporate, or the holder of an office, established under a law of this jurisdiction for a public purpose or to exercise governmental functions; or

(b)a person or body (or a class of persons or bodies) prescribed by the regulations as being within this definition;

WA government lawyer means an Australian lawyer employed in —

(a)the State Solicitor’s Office; or

(b)the Parliamentary Counsel’s Office; or

(c)the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions; or

(d)a government agency prescribed by the regulations for the purposes of this definition.

(2)A WA government lawyer is engaged in government work when the lawyer is engaged in legal practice in the course of the lawyer’s duties in relation to the entity in which the lawyer is employed.

(3)A WA government lawyer engaged in government work is taken to be a local legal practitioner and an Australian legal practitioner.

(4)The regulations may make provision for —

(a)arrangements to be made by employing authorities of WA government lawyers for the continuing professional development of those lawyers; and

(b)the submission of those arrangements for approval by the Attorney General; and

(c)the information to be given to the Board by an employing authority or former employing authority of a WA government lawyer in relation to that lawyer; and

(d)the manner and form in which the information is to be given.

Division 3 — Local practising certificates generally

37.Local practising certificates

(1)Practising certificates may be granted by the Board under this Part.

(2)The Board may determine the categories of local practising certificates.

(3)The holder of a local practising certificate must not hold another local practising certificate, or an interstate practising certificate, that is in force during the currency of the first‑mentioned local practising certificate.

(4)A person contravening subsection (3) is taken to contravene a condition of the person’s practising certificate.

38.Suitability to hold local practising certificate

(1)This section has effect for the purposes of section 45 or any other provision of this Act where the question of whether or not a person is a fit and proper person to hold a local practising certificate is relevant.

(2)The Board may, in considering whether or not the person is a fit and proper person to hold a local practising certificate, take into account any suitability matter relating to the person, and any of the following, whether happening before or after the commencement of this section —

(a)whether the person obtained an Australian practising certificate because of incorrect or misleading information;

(b)whether the person has contravened a condition of an Australian practising certificate held by the person;

(c)whether the person has contravened this Act, a previous Act or a corresponding law or the regulations or legal profession rules under this Act or a corresponding law;

(d)whether the person has contravened —

(i)an order of the Complaints Committee or the State Administrative Tribunal or Supreme Court (full bench) exercising jurisdiction under this Act or a previous Act; or

(ii)an order of a corresponding disciplinary body or of another court or tribunal of another jurisdiction exercising jurisdiction or powers by way of appeal or review of an order of a corresponding disciplinary body;

(e)without limiting any other paragraph —

(i)whether the person has failed to pay a required contribution or levy to the Guarantee Fund; or

(ii)whether the person has contravened a requirement imposed under this Act about professional indemnity insurance; or

(iii)whether the person has failed to pay other costs, expenses or fines for which the person is liable under this Act or a previous Act;

(f)any other matters relating to the person the Board considers are appropriate.

(3)A person may be considered a fit and proper person to hold a local practising certificate even though the person is within any of the categories of the matters referred to in subsection (2), if the Board consider that the circumstances warrant the determination.

(4)If a matter was —

(a)disclosed in an application for admission to the legal profession in this or another jurisdiction; and

(b)determined by the Supreme Court or by the Board or a corresponding authority not to be sufficient for refusing admission,

the matter cannot be taken into account as a ground for refusing to grant or renew or for cancelling a local practising certificate, but the matter may be taken into account when considering other matters in relation to the person concerned.

39.Duration of local practising certificate

(1)A local practising certificate granted under this Act is in force from the date specified in it until the end of the financial year in which it is granted, unless —

(a)the certificate is sooner suspended or cancelled; or

(b)an earlier date is specified in the local practising certificate as the date on which it ceases to be in force.

(2)A local practising certificate renewed under this Act is in force until the end of the financial year following its previous period of currency, unless —

(a)the certificate is sooner suspended or cancelled; or

(b)an earlier date is specified in the local practising certificate as the date on which it ceases to be in force.

(3)If an application accepted by the Board for the renewal of a local practising certificate that ceases to be in force at the end of a financial year has not been finally determined by the following 1 July, the certificate —

(a)continues in force on and from that 1 July until the application has been finally determined or the holder withdraws the application for renewal, unless the certificate is sooner cancelled or renewed; and

(b)if renewed, is to be taken to have been renewed on and from that 1 July.

(4)For the purposes of subsection (3), an application is finally determined —

(a)by the renewal of the certificate; or

(b)by the exhaustion of all rights of review in relation to a decision to refuse to renew the certificate.

40.Professional indemnity insurance

(1)The Board must not grant or renew a local practising certificate unless the applicant produces evidence to the satisfaction of the Board that the applicant is, or will be, covered by professional indemnity insurance that complies with the requirements imposed under this Act in relation to the applicant.

(2)This section does not apply in relation to a person, or person of a class, exempted from the requirements of the regulations.

(3)The Board is entitled to accept as evidence that the applicant has, or will, comply with the requirements of the regulations under Part 11 evidence that the regulations provide is acceptable evidence for the purposes of this section.

41.Local legal practitioner is officer of Supreme Court

A local legal practitioner is an officer of the Supreme Court.

Division 4 — Grant or renewal of local practising certificate

42.Application for grant or renewal of local practising certificate

(1)An Australian lawyer may apply to the Board for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate if eligible to do so under this section.

(2)An Australian lawyer is eligible to apply for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate if the lawyer complies with any regulations and legal profession rules relating to eligibility for the practising certificate and if —

(a)in the case of a lawyer who is not an Australian legal practitioner at the time of making the application —

(i)the lawyer reasonably expects to be engaged in Australian legal practice solely or principally in this jurisdiction during the currency of the certificate or renewal applied for; or

(ii)if subparagraph (i) does not apply to the lawyer or it is not reasonably practicable to determine whether it applies to the lawyer — the lawyer’s place of residence in Australia is this jurisdiction or the lawyer does not have a place of residence in Australia;

or

(b)in the case of a lawyer who is an Australian legal practitioner at the time of making the application —

(i)the jurisdiction in which the lawyer engages in legal practice solely or principally is this jurisdiction; or

(ii)the lawyer holds a current local practising certificate and engages in legal practice in another jurisdiction under an arrangement that is of a temporary nature; or

(iii)the lawyer reasonably expects to be engaged in legal practice solely or principally in this jurisdiction during the currency of the certificate or renewal applied for; or

(iv)if subparagraph (i), (ii) or (iii) does not apply to the lawyer or it is not reasonably practicable to determine whether subparagraph (i), (ii) or (iii) applies to the lawyer — the lawyer’s place of residence in Australia is this jurisdiction or the lawyer does not have a place of residence in Australia.

(3)For the purposes of subsection (2)(b), the jurisdiction in which an Australian lawyer engages in legal practice solely or principally is to be decided by reference to the lawyer’s legal practice during the certificate period current at the time —

(a)the application is made; or

(b)in the case of a late application — the application should have been made.

(4)An Australian lawyer is not eligible to apply for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate in respect of a financial year if the lawyer would also be the holder of another Australian practising certificate for that year, but this subsection does not limit the factors determining ineligibility to apply for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate.

(5)An Australian lawyer must not apply for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate if the lawyer is not eligible to make the application.

(6)An Australian lawyer who —

(a)engages in legal practice solely or principally in this jurisdiction during a financial year; and

(b)reasonably expects to engage in legal practice solely or principally in this jurisdiction in the following financial year,

must apply for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate in respect of the following financial year.

(7)Subsection (6) does not apply to an interstate legal practitioner who applied for the grant or renewal of an interstate practising certificate on the basis that the practitioner reasonably expected to engage in legal practice solely or principally in this jurisdiction under an arrangement that is of a temporary nature.

(8)The exemption provided by subsection (7) ceases to operate at the end of the period prescribed by the regulations for the purposes of this subsection.

(9)A reference in this section to engaging in legal practice principally in this or any other jurisdiction applies only to legal practice in Australia and, accordingly, an Australian lawyer who is engaged or expects to be engaged in legal practice principally in a foreign country is nevertheless eligible to apply for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate if the lawyer otherwise meets the requirements of this section.

(10)An Australian lawyer is also eligible to apply for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate if the lawyer is of a class or description prescribed by the regulations. The regulations may provide that the Board has a discretion as to whether or not to grant or renew a local practising certificate to a person in his or her capacity as an Australian lawyer of that class or description.

[Section 42 amended: No. 47 of 2011 s. 27.]

43.Manner of application and fees

(1)An application for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate must be —

(a)made in an approved form; and

(b)accompanied by the fees prescribed by the legal profession rules and the Guarantee Fund contribution, if any, required under this Act.

(2)Different fees may be set for local practising certificates according to different factors as prescribed by the legal profession rules.

(3)The approved form may require the applicant to disclose matters that may affect the applicant’s eligibility for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate or the question whether the applicant is a fit and proper person to hold a local practising certificate.

(4)The approved form may indicate that particular kinds of matters previously disclosed in a particular manner need not be disclosed for the purposes of the current application.

44.Timing of application for renewal of local practising certificate

(1)An application for the renewal of a local practising certificate must be made within —

(a)the period prescribed by the legal profession rules as the standard renewal period; or

(b)the later period prescribed by the legal profession rules as the late fee period.

(2)Those periods must be within the currency of the local practising certificate being sought to be renewed.

(3)The Board may reject an application for renewal made during the late fee period, and must reject an application for renewal made outside those periods unless the Board accepts the application under subsection (4).

(4)The Board may accept an application made within 6 months after the late fee period (even after the expiry of the local practising certificate being sought to be renewed) if satisfied the delay was caused by reasons beyond the control of the applicant or other special circumstances warranting acceptance of the application.

(5)For an application accepted under subsection (4) after the expiry of the local practising certificate on 30 June in the year concerned, the certificate —

(a)is taken to have continued in force on and from the 1 July immediately following its expiry until the Board renews or refuses to renew the certificate or the holder withdraws the application for renewal, unless the certificate is sooner suspended or cancelled; and

(b)if renewed, is taken to have been renewed on and from that 1 July.

(6)Subsection (7) applies if an application for renewal of a local practising certificate is made during or after the late fee period prescribed by the legal profession rules.

(7)Payment of a late fee prescribed by or determined under the legal profession rules may, if the Board thinks fit, be required as a condition of acceptance of the application.

45.Grant or renewal of local practising certificate

(1)The Board must consider an application that has been made to it for the grant or renewal of a local practising certificate and may —

(a)grant or refuse to grant the certificate; or

(b)renew or refuse to renew the certificate.

(2)The Board may, when granting or renewing the certificate, impose conditions as referred to in section 47.

(3)The Board may refuse —

(a)to consider an application if —

(i)it is not made in accordance with this Act; or

(ii)the required fees and costs have not been paid;

or

(b)to grant or renew a local practising certificate if the applicant has not complied with this Act in relation to the application.

(4)The Board must not grant a local practising certificate unless it is satisfied that the applicant —

(a)was eligible to apply for the grant when the application was made; and

(b)is a fit and proper person to hold the certificate.

(5)The Board must not renew a local practising certificate if it is satisfied that the applicant —

(a)was not eligible to apply for the renewal when the application was made; or

(b)is not a fit and proper person to continue to hold the certificate.

(6)The Board must not grant or renew a local practising certificate if it considers the applicant’s circumstances have changed since the application was made and the applicant would (having regard to information that has come to the Board’s attention) not have been eligible to make the application when the application is being considered.

(7)If the Board grants or renews a local practising certificate, the Board must, as soon as practicable, give the applicant —

(a)for the grant of a certificate — a local practising certificate; or

(b)for the renewal of a certificate — a new local practising certificate.

(8)If the Board —

(a)refuses to grant or renew a local practising certificate; or

(b)imposes a condition on the certificate and the applicant does not agree to the condition,

the Board must, as soon as practicable, give the applicant an information notice.

(9)The Board is taken to have refused to grant a local practising certificate if the certificate has neither been granted nor refused within 6 months after —

(a)if the Board has given the applicant a notice under section 75 — the applicant has complied with the notice to the Board’s satisfaction; or

(b)if paragraph (a) does not apply — the application was lodged.

Division 5 — Conditions on local practising certificates

46.Conditions generally

(1)A local practising certificate is subject to —

(a)any conditions imposed by the Board under this Act; and

(b)any conditions imposed under section 48; and

(c)any conditions imposed under the legal profession rules; and

(d)any conditions imposed under Part 13 or under provisions of a corresponding law that correspond to Part 13; and

(e)any other conditions imposed under this or any other Act.

(2)If a condition is imposed, varied or revoked under this Act during the currency of the local practising certificate concerned, the certificate must be amended by the Board, or a new certificate must be issued by the Board, to reflect on its face the imposition, variation or revocation.

47.Conditions imposed by Board

(1)The Board may impose conditions on a local practising certificate —

(a)when it is granted or renewed; or

(b)during its currency.

(2)A condition imposed under this section must be reasonable and relevant.

(3)A condition imposed under this section may be about any of the following —

(a)requiring the holder of the practising certificate to undertake and complete —

(i)continuing legal education; or

(ii)specific legal education or training; or

(iii)a period of supervised legal practice;

(b)restricting the areas of law practised;

(c)controlling, restricting or prohibiting the operation of a trust account;

(d)controlling, restricting or prohibiting the receipt of trust money;

(e)restricting the holder to particular conditions concerning employment or supervision;

(f)requiring the holder of the practising certificate to undergo counselling or medical treatment or to act in accordance with medical advice given to the holder;

(g)requiring the holder of the practising certificate to use the services of an accountant or other financial specialist in connection with the holder’s practice;

(h)requiring the holder of the practising certificate to provide the Board with evidence as to any outstanding tax obligations of the holder and as to provision made by the holder to satisfy any such outstanding obligations;

(i)a matter agreed by the holder.

(4)Subsection (3) does not limit the matters about which a condition may be imposed under this section.

(5)The Board must not impose a condition requiring the holder to undertake and complete specific legal education or training unless —

(a)the Board is satisfied, having regard to —

(i)the nature and currency of the holder’s academic studies, legal training or experience; or

(ii)the holder’s conduct,

that it is reasonable to require the specific legal education or training to be undertaken; or

(b)the condition is one that is imposed generally on holders of local practising certificates or any class of holders of local practising certificates.

(6)The Board may vary or revoke conditions imposed under this section.

(7)If the Board imposes a condition on, or varies or revokes a condition during the currency of the local practising certificate concerned, the imposition, variation or revocation takes effect when the holder has been notified of it or at a later time specified by the Board.

(8)This section has effect subject to section 56 in relation to the imposition of a condition on a local practising certificate during its currency.

48.Imposition or variation of conditions pending criminal proceedings

(1)If a local legal practitioner has been charged with an offence but the charge has not been determined, the Board may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for an order under this section.

(2)On application under subsection (1), the State Administrative Tribunal may make either or both of the following orders —

(a)an order varying the conditions on the practitioner’s local practising certificate;

(b)an order imposing conditions or further conditions on the practitioner’s local practising certificate.

(3)The State Administrative Tribunal may make an order under this section only if the Tribunal considers it appropriate to do so, having regard to —

(a)the seriousness of the offence; and

(b)the public interest.

(4)An order under this section has effect until the sooner of —

(a)the end of the period specified by the State Administrative Tribunal; or

(b)if the practitioner is convicted of the offence — 28 days after the day of the conviction; or

(c)if the charge is dismissed — the day of the dismissal.

(5)The State Administrative Tribunal, on application by any party, may vary or revoke an order under this section at any time.

49.Conditions imposed on interstate admission

(1)A local legal practitioner must not contravene a condition that was imposed on the admission of a person to the legal profession under a corresponding law (with any variations of the condition made from time to time) and that is still in force.

(2)A person contravening a condition referred to in subsection (1) is taken to contravene a condition of the person’s local practising certificate.

50.Restricted legal practice

(1)In this section –

required experience means —

(a)18 months supervised legal practice, in the case of a person who, to qualify for admission to the legal profession, completed practical legal training —

(i)principally under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner, whether involving articles of clerkship or otherwise; or

(ii)involving articles of clerkship principally under the supervision of a person other than an Australian legal practitioner in accordance with the admission rules;

or

(b)2 years supervised legal practice, in the case of a person who, to qualify for admission to the legal profession in this or another jurisdiction, completed other practical legal training;

restricted legal practice means legal practice by a person who is an Australian legal practitioner —

(a)as an employee of a law practice if —

(i)at least one partner, legal practitioner director or other employee of the law practice is an Australian legal practitioner who holds an unrestricted practising certificate; and

(ii)the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner referred to in subparagraph (i);

or

(b)as a partner in a law firm if —

(i)at least one other partner is an Australian legal practitioner who holds an unrestricted practising certificate; and

(ii)the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner referred to in subparagraph (i);

or

(c)as a WA government lawyer; or

(d)as an interstate government lawyer; or

(e)as an employee of a body that carries on a business other than the practice of law if the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner who holds an unrestricted practising certificate; or

(f)in a capacity approved for the purposes of this paragraph under a legal profession rule.

(2)In determining whether a person has the required experience regard can only be had to a period of supervised legal practice that the regulations permit to be taken into account for the purposes of this section.

(3)The required experience may be made up of separate periods of supervised legal practice.

(4)A local legal practitioner who does not have the required experience must engage in restricted legal practice only.

(5)A person contravening subsection (4) is taken to contravene a condition of the person’s local practising certificate.

(6)A condition of a local practising certificate may require the holder to engage in supervised legal practice even though the holder has the required experience.

(7)The Board may exempt a person or class of persons from the requirement of subsection (4) or may reduce the required experience for the person or class of persons, if satisfied that the person or persons do not need to be supervised or need to be supervised only for a shorter period, having regard to —

(a)the length and nature of any legal practice previously engaged in by the person or persons; and

(b)the length and nature of any legal practice engaged in by the supervisors (if any) who previously supervised the legal practice engaged in by the person or persons.

(8)An exemption under subsection (7) may be given unconditionally or subject to such conditions as the Board thinks appropriate.

51.Notification of offence

(1)A local legal practitioner must give notice in an approved form to the Board if the holder is —

(a)convicted of an offence that would have to be disclosed under the admission rules in relation to an application to admission; or

(b)charged with a serious offence.

(2)The notice must be given to the Board within 7 days after conviction or charge.

(3)This section does not apply to an offence to which Division 7 applies.

(4)A person contravening subsection (1) is taken to contravene a condition of the person’s local practising certificate.

52.Conditions imposed by legal profession rules

(1)The legal profession rules may —

(a)impose conditions on local practising certificates or any class of local practising certificates; and

(b)authorise conditions to be imposed on local practising certificates or any class of local practising certificates.

(2)Without limiting subsection (1), conditions on local practising certificates or any class of local practising certificates may be imposed under the legal profession rules about any matter referred to in section 47(3)(a)(i), (c) or (d).

[Section 52 amended: No. 47 of 2011 s. 27.]

53.Compliance with conditions

The holder of a current local practising certificate must not contravene (in this jurisdiction or elsewhere) a condition to which the certificate is subject.

Division 6 — Amendment, suspension or cancellation of local practising certificates

54.Application of this Division

This Division does not apply in relation to matters referred to in Division 7.

55.Grounds for amending, suspending or cancelling local practising certificate

Each of the following is a ground for amending, suspending or cancelling a local practising certificate —

(a)the holder is no longer a fit and proper person to hold the certificate;

(b)the holder is not, or is no longer, covered by professional indemnity insurance that complies with requirements imposed under this Act;

(c)if a condition of the certificate is that the holder is limited to legal practice specified in the certificate — the holder is or has been engaging in legal practice that the holder is not entitled to engage in under this Act.

56.Amending, suspending or cancelling local practising certificate

(1)In this section —

amend, in relation to a certificate, means amend the certificate under section 47 during its currency, otherwise than at the request of the holder of the certificate.

(2)If the Board believes a ground exists to amend, suspend or cancel a local practising certificate (the proposed action), the Board must give the holder a notice that —

(a)states the proposed action and —

(i)if the proposed action is to amend the certificate — states the proposed amendment; and

(ii)if the proposed action is to suspend the certificate — states the proposed suspension period;

and

(b)states the grounds for proposing to take the proposed action; and

(c)outlines the facts and circumstances that form the basis for the Board’s belief; and

(d)invites the holder to make written representations to the Board within a specified time of not less than 7 days and not more than 28 days, as to why the proposed action should not be taken.

(3)If, after considering all written representations made within the specified time and, in its discretion, written representations made after the specified time, the Board still believes a ground exists to take the proposed action, the Board may —

(a)if the notice under subsection (2) stated the proposed action was to amend the practising certificate — amend the certificate in the way stated or in a less onerous way the Board considers appropriate because of the representations; or

(b)if the notice stated the proposed action was to suspend the practising certificate for a specified period —

(i)suspend the certificate for a period no longer than the specified period; or

(ii)amend the certificate in a less onerous way the Board considers appropriate because of the representations;

or

(c)if the notice stated the proposed action was to cancel the practising certificate —

(i)cancel the certificate; or

(ii)suspend the certificate for a period; or

(iii)amend the certificate in a less onerous way the Board considers appropriate because of the representations.

(4)If the Board decides to amend, suspend or cancel the practising certificate, the Board must give the holder an information notice about the decision.

57.Operation of amendment, suspension or cancellation of local practising certificate

(1)This section applies if a decision is made to amend, suspend or cancel a local practising certificate under section 56.

(2)Subject to subsections (3) and (4), the amendment, suspension or cancellation of the practising certificate takes effect on the later of the following —

(a)the day notice of the decision is given to the holder;

(b)the day specified in the information notice.

(3)If the practising certificate is amended, suspended or cancelled because the holder has been convicted of an offence —

(a)the State Administrative Tribunal may, on the application of the holder, order that the operation of the amendment, suspension or cancellation of the practising certificate be stayed until —

(i)the end of the time to appeal against the conviction; and

(ii)if an appeal is made against the conviction — the appeal is finally decided, lapses or otherwise ends;

and

(b)the amendment, suspension or cancellation does not have effect during any period in respect of which the stay is in force.

(4)If the practising certificate is amended, suspended or cancelled because the holder has been convicted of an offence and the conviction is quashed —

(a)the amendment or suspension ceases to have effect when the conviction is quashed; or

(b)the cancellation ceases to have effect when the conviction is quashed and the certificate is restored as if it had merely been suspended.

58.Immediate suspension of local practising certificate

(1)This section applies, despite section 56 and Division 7, if the Board considers it necessary in the public interest to immediately suspend a local practising certificate on —

(a)any of the grounds on which the certificate could be suspended or cancelled under section 56; or

(b)the ground of the happening of a show cause event in relation to the holder; or

(c)any other ground that the Board considers warrants suspension of the certificate in the public interest,

whether or not any action has been taken or commenced under section 56 or Division 7 in relation to the holder.

(2)The Board may, by written notice given to the holder, immediately suspend the practising certificate until the earlier of the following —

(a)the time at which the Board informs the holder of the Board’s decision by notice under section 56;

(b)the end of the period of 56 days after the notice is given to the holder under this section.

(3)The notice under this section must —

(a)include an information notice about the suspension; and

(b)state that the holder may make written representations to the Board about the suspension.

(4)The holder may make written representations to the Board about the suspension, and the Board must consider the representations.

(5)The Board may revoke the suspension at any time, whether or not in response to any written representations made to it by the holder.

59.Other ways of amending, suspending or cancelling local practising certificate

(1)The Board may —

(a)amend a local practising certificate if the holder requests the Board to do so; or

(b)suspend a local practising certificate for a specified period if the holder requests the Board to do so or agrees to the Board doing so; or

(c)cancel a local practising certificate if the holder requests the Board to do so or surrenders the certificate to the Board.

(2)The Board may amend a local practising certificate —

(a)for a formal or clerical reason; or

(b)in another way that does not adversely affect the holder’s interests.

(3)A local practising certificate is automatically cancelled when the holder’s name is removed from the local roll or the holder ceases to be an Australian lawyer.

(4)The amendment, suspension or cancellation of a local practising certificate under subsection (1) or (2) is effected by written notice given to the holder.

(5)Section 56 does not apply in the case of an amendment, suspension or cancellation under this section.

(6)If the Board decides to refuse a request referred to in subsection (1), the Board must give the holder an information notice about the decision.

60.Relationship of this Division with Part 13

Nothing in this Division prevents a complaint from being made, or an investigation being initiated, under Part 13 about a matter to which this Division relates.

Division 7 — Special powers in relation to local practising certificates — show cause events

61.Applicant for local practising certificate — show cause event

(1)This section applies if —

(a)a person (the applicant) is applying for the grant of a local practising certificate; and

(b)a show cause event in relation to the person happened, whether before or after the commencement of this section, after the person was first admitted to the legal profession in this or another jurisdiction, however the admission was expressed at the time of the admission.

(2)As part of the application, the applicant must provide to the Board a written statement —

(a)about the show cause event; and

(b)explaining why, despite the show cause event, the applicant considers himself or herself to be a fit and proper person to hold a local practising certificate.

(3)However, the applicant need not provide a statement under subsection (2) if the applicant (as a previous applicant for a local practising certificate or as the holder of a local practising certificate previously in force) has previously provided to the Board —

(a)a statement under this section; or

(b)a notice and statement under section 62,

explaining why, despite the show cause event, the applicant considers himself or herself to be a fit and proper person to hold a local practising certificate.

62.Holder of local practising certificate — show cause event

(1)This section applies to a show cause event that happens in relation to the holder of a local practising certificate.

(2)The holder must provide to the Board both of the following —

(a)within 7 days after the happening of the event — notice, in the approved form, that the event happened;

(b)within 28 days after the happening of the event — a written statement explaining why, despite the show cause event, the person considers himself or herself to be a fit and proper person to hold a local practising certificate.

(3)If a written statement is provided after the 28 days mentioned in subsection (2)(b), the Board may accept the statement and take it into account.

63.Refusal, amendment, suspension or cancellation of local practising certificate — failure to show cause

(1)The Board may refuse to grant or renew, or may amend, suspend or cancel, a local practising certificate if the applicant or holder —

(a)is required by section 61 or 62 to provide a written statement relating to a matter and has failed to provide a written statement in accordance with that requirement; or

(b)has provided a written statement in accordance with section 61 or 62, but the Board does not consider that the applicant or holder has shown in the statement that, despite the show cause event concerned, the applicant or holder is a fit and proper person to hold a local practising certificate.

(2)For the purposes of this section only, a written statement accepted by the Board under section 62(3) is taken to have been provided in accordance with section 62.

(3)The Board must give the applicant or holder an information notice about the decision to refuse to grant or renew, or to amend, suspend or cancel, the certificate.

64.Restriction on making further applications

(1)This section applies if the Board decides under section 63 to refuse to grant or renew a local practising certificate to a person or to cancel a person’s local practising certificate.

(2)The Board may also decide that the person is not entitled to apply for the grant of a local practising certificate for a specified period not exceeding 5 years.

(3)If the Board makes a decision under subsection (2), the Board must include the decision in the information notice required under section 63(3).

(4)A person in respect of whom a decision has been made under this section, or under a provision of a corresponding law, is not entitled to apply for the grant of a local practising certificate during the period specified in the decision.

65.Power to renew practising certificate or defer action in special circumstances

(1)Despite any other provision of this Division, the Board may renew a holder’s local practising certificate if the end of the financial year for which the holder’s current practising certificate is in force is imminent and the Board has not made a determination under section 63 in relation to the holder.

(2)The renewal of a practising certificate in the circumstances referred to in subsection (1) does not prevent a determination from subsequently being made and action taken under this Division to cancel, suspend or amend the holder’s local practising certificate.

(3)Despite any other provision of this Act, where the Board is required to determine a matter under section 63 in relation to a holder, it may, for the purpose of enabling the proper arrangement of the affairs of the holder —

(a)renew the holder’s local practising certificate for such period, specified in the local practising certificate, as the Board considers necessary to achieve that purpose; or

(b)defer cancelling or suspending the holder’s local practising certificate for such period as the Board considers necessary to achieve that purpose.

66.Relationship of this Division with Part 13

Nothing in this Division prevents a complaint from being made, or an investigation from being initiated, under Part 13 about a matter to which this Division relates.

Division 8 — Further provisions relating to local practising certificates

67.Return of local practising certificate

(1)This section applies if a local practising certificate granted to an Australian legal practitioner —

(a)is amended, cancelled or suspended by the Board or because of an order under Part 13; or

(b)is replaced by another certificate.

(2)The Board may give the practitioner a notice requiring the practitioner to return the certificate to the Board in the way specified in the notice within a specified period of not less than 14 days.

(3)The practitioner must comply with a notice, unless the practitioner has a reasonable excuse.

Penalty: a fine of $2 000.

(4)The Board must return the practising certificate to the practitioner as soon as practicable —

(a)if the certificate is amended — after amending it; or

(b)if the certificate is suspended and is still current at the end of the suspension period — at the end of the suspension period.

Division 9 — Interstate legal practitioners

68.Requirement for professional indemnity insurance

(1)An interstate legal practitioner must not engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction, or represent or advertise that the practitioner is entitled to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction, unless the practitioner —

(a)is covered by professional indemnity insurance that —

(i)covers legal practice in this jurisdiction; and

(ii)has been approved under or complies with the requirements of the corresponding law of the practitioner’s home jurisdiction; and

(iii)is for at least $1.5 million (inclusive of defence costs), unless (without affecting subparagraph (i) or (ii)) the practitioner engages in legal practice solely as or in the manner of a barrister;

or

(b)is employed by a corporation, other than an incorporated legal practice, and the only legal services provided by the practitioner in this jurisdiction are in‑house legal services.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)Subsection (1) does not apply to an interstate legal practitioner who —

(a)is an interstate government lawyer; and

(b)is engaged in legal practice in this jurisdiction only to the extent that the practitioner is engaged in government work.

69.Extent of entitlement of interstate legal practitioner to practise in this jurisdiction

(1)This Part does not authorise an interstate legal practitioner to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction to a greater extent than a local legal practitioner could be authorised under a local practising certificate.

(2)Also, an interstate legal practitioner’s right to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction —

(a)is subject to —

(i)any conditions imposed by the Board under section 70 in relation to the interstate legal practitioner; and

(ii)any conditions imposed under the legal profession rules as referred to in that section;

and

(b)is, to the greatest practicable extent and with all necessary changes —

(i)the same as the practitioner’s right to engage in legal practice in the practitioner’s home jurisdiction; and

(ii)subject to any condition on the practitioner’s right to engage in legal practice in that jurisdiction, including any conditions imposed on the practitioner’s admission to the legal profession in this or another jurisdiction.

(3)If there is an inconsistency between conditions mentioned in subsection (2)(a) and conditions mentioned in subsection (2)(b), the conditions that are, in the opinion of the Board, more onerous prevail to the extent of the inconsistency.

(4)An interstate legal practitioner must not engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction in a way that is not authorised under this Act or in contravention of any condition referred to in this section.

70.Additional conditions on practice of interstate legal practitioners

(1)The Board may, by written notice to an interstate legal practitioner engaged in legal practice in this jurisdiction, impose any condition on the practitioner’s practice that the Board may impose under this Act on a local practising certificate.

(2)The legal profession rules may impose, or provide for the imposition of, conditions on an interstate legal practitioner’s right to engage in legal practice.

(3)Conditions imposed under or referred to in this section must not be more onerous than conditions applying to local legal practitioners.

(4)A notice under this section must include an information notice about the decision to impose a condition.

(5)An interstate legal practitioner must not contravene a condition imposed under this section.

(6)An interstate legal practitioner may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for review of a decision of the Board to impose a condition on the practitioner’s practice under this section.

71.Notification requirements for interstate legal practitioners

(1)An interstate legal practitioner who establishes an office in this jurisdiction must give written notice to the Board in accordance with this section within 28 days after establishing the office.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(2)The notice must contain —

(a)the practitioner’s name, date of birth and date of admission to the legal profession; and

(b)the name of any law practice of which the practitioner is a principal or employee, or any other person or body of which the practitioner is an employee; and

(c)if the practitioner is a sole practitioner, any business names under which the practitioner engages in legal practice; and

(d)any condition to which the practitioner is subject in respect of his or her legal practice in his or her home jurisdiction or elsewhere; and

(e)an address in this jurisdiction for service of notices and other documents on the practitioner; and

(f)a statement as to whether the practitioner has established, or intends to establish, an office in this jurisdiction; and

(g)a statement as to whether the practitioner is entitled to receive trust money, or to withdraw trust money from a trust account; and

(h)the information prescribed by the regulations (if any).

(3)A notice under this section must be accompanied by —

(a)satisfactory evidence, in an approved form, that the interstate legal practitioner has professional indemnity insurance that complies with the requirements under this Act; and

(b)the required contribution to the Guarantee Fund under section 338, if any.

(4)If an interstate legal practitioner who has indicated that he or she does not intend to establish an office in this jurisdiction subsequently establishes an office in this jurisdiction, the practitioner must give notice to the Board within 14 days.

(5)For the purposes of this section, an interstate legal practitioner establishes an office in this jurisdiction when the practitioner first offers or provides legal services to the public in this jurisdiction from an office maintained by the practitioner, or by a principal of a law practice of which the practitioner is an associate, for that purpose in this jurisdiction.

72.Special provisions about interstate legal practitioner engaging in unsupervised legal practice in this jurisdiction

(1)In this section —

required experience means —

(a)18 months supervised legal practice, in the case of a person who, to qualify for admission to the legal profession, completed practical legal training —

(i)principally under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner, whether involving articles of clerkship or otherwise; or

(ii)involving articles of clerkship principally under the supervision of a person other than an Australian legal practitioner in accordance with the admission rules;

or

(b)2 years supervised legal practice, in the case of a person who, to qualify for admission to the legal profession in this or another jurisdiction, completed other practical legal training;

restricted legal practice means legal practice by a person who is an Australian legal practitioner —

(a)as an employee of a law practice if —

(i)at least one partner, legal practitioner director or other employee of the law practice is an Australian legal practitioner who holds an unrestricted practising certificate; and

(ii)the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner referred to in subparagraph (i);

or

(b)as a partner in a law firm if —

(i)at least one other partner is an Australian legal practitioner who holds an unrestricted practising certificate; and

(ii)the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner referred to in subparagraph (i);

or

(c)as a WA government lawyer; or

(d)as an interstate government lawyer; or

(e)as an employee of a body that carries on a business other than the practice of law if the person engages in legal practice under the supervision of an Australian legal practitioner who holds an unrestricted practising certificate; or

(f)in a capacity approved for the purposes of this paragraph under a legal profession rule.

(2)In determining whether a person has the required experience regard can only be had to a period of supervised legal practice that the regulations permit to be taken into account for the purposes of this section.

(3)The required experience may be made up of separate periods of supervised legal practice.

(4)An interstate legal practitioner who does not have the required experience must engage in restricted legal practice only.

(5)Subsection (4) —

(a)does not apply if the interstate legal practitioner is exempt from the requirement for required experience in the practitioner’s home jurisdiction; or

(b)applies only to the extent of a shorter period if the required period of required experience has been reduced for the interstate legal practitioner in the practitioner’s home jurisdiction.

73.Interstate legal practitioner is officer of Supreme Court

An interstate legal practitioner engaged in legal practice in this jurisdiction has all the duties and obligations of an officer of the Supreme Court, and is subject to the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court in respect of those duties and obligations.

Division 10 — Miscellaneous provisions relating to practice

74.Jurisdiction protocols

(1)The Board may enter into arrangements (jurisdiction protocols) with regulatory authorities of other jurisdictions about determining —

(a)the jurisdiction in which an Australian lawyer engages in legal practice principally or can reasonably expect to engage in legal practice principally; or

(b)the circumstances in which an arrangement under which an Australian legal practitioner practises in a jurisdiction —

(i)can be regarded as being of a temporary nature; or

(ii)ceases to be of a temporary nature;

or

(c)the circumstances in which an Australian legal practitioner can reasonably expect to engage in legal practice principally in a jurisdiction during the currency of an Australian practising certificate.

(2)For the purposes of this Act, and to the extent that the jurisdiction protocols are relevant, a matter referred to in subsection (1)(a), (b) or (c) is to be determined in accordance with the protocols.

(3)The Board may enter into arrangements that amend, revoke or replace a jurisdiction protocol.

(4)A jurisdiction protocol does not have effect in this jurisdiction unless it is embodied or identified in the regulations.

75.Consideration and investigation of applicants or holders

(1)To help it consider whether or not to grant, renew, amend, suspend or cancel a local practising certificate the Board may, by notice to the applicant or holder, require the applicant or holder —

(a)to give the Board specified documents or information; or

(b)to be medically examined by a registered medical practitioner nominated by the Board and to provide to the Board a report of that examination, at the applicant’s or holder’s expense; or

(c)to obtain, at the applicant’s or holder’s expense, a criminal record check for the applicant or holder and to provide it to the Board; or

(d)to cooperate with any inquiries by the Board that the Board considers appropriate.

(2)In subsection (1)(c) —

criminal record check means a document issued by the Australian Federal Police, the Police Force of a State or Territory, or another body or agency approved by the Board regarding the criminal convictions of a person for offences under the law of this or any other jurisdiction or the Commonwealth.

(3)The Board may require the applicant or holder to verify information or documents by statutory declaration or in another manner specified by the Board.

(4)A failure to comply with a notice under subsection (1) by the date specified in the notice and in the way required by the notice is a ground for making an adverse decision in relation to the action being considered by the Board.

(5)Without limiting subsection (4), a failure to comply with a requirement under subsection (1)(b) or (c) may be accepted by the Board as evidence of the unfitness of the person to engage in legal practice.

(6)A report of the medical examination of an applicant or holder is not admissible in any proceeding, and a person cannot be compelled to produce the report or to give evidence about the report or its contents in any proceeding.

(7)Subsection (6) does not apply in relation to a proceeding for review of a decision of the Board —

(a)refusing to grant or renew a local practising certificate; or

(b)amending, suspending or cancelling a local practising certificate.

(8)Subsection (6) does not apply if the report is admitted or produced, or evidence about the report or its contents is given in a proceeding with the consent of the applicant or holder to whom the report relates.

76.Register of local practising certificates

(1)The Board must keep a register of the names of Australian lawyers to whom it grants local practising certificates.

(2)The register must —

(a)state the conditions (if any) imposed on a local practising certificate in relation to engaging in legal practice; and

(b)include any other particulars prescribed by the regulations.

(3)If a condition is imposed on a local practising certificate because of the infirmity, injury or mental or physical illness of the holder of the practising certificate, the Board may omit from the register any part of the condition that includes the reason for the imposition of the condition or other information in relation to the infirmity, injury or mental or physical illness.

(4)The register may be kept in the way the Board decides.

(5)The register must be available for inspection, without charge, at the Board’s principal place of business during normal business hours.

77.Orders about conditions

The Board may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for an order that an Australian lawyer not contravene a condition imposed under this Part.

78.Review of decisions of Board

A person may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for a review of —

(a)a decision of the Board —

(i)to refuse to grant or renew a local practising certificate; or

(ii)to amend, suspend or cancel a local practising certificate;

or

(b)a decision of the Board refusing a request to amend a local practising certificate under section 59(1); or

(c)a decision of the Board under section 64 that the person is not entitled to apply for the grant of a local practising certificate for a specified period.

79.Interstate government lawyers

(1)In this section —

another jurisdiction means —

(a)another State or Territory of the Commonwealth; or

(b)the Commonwealth;

government agency of another jurisdiction means —

(a)a body or organisation that is established under the law of that jurisdiction for a public purpose or to exercise governmental functions; or

(b)a body or organisation (or a class of bodies or organisations) prescribed by the regulations as being within this definition;

interstate government lawyer means an Australian lawyer, or a person eligible for admission to the legal profession, employed by another jurisdiction or a government agency of another jurisdiction.

(2)An interstate government lawyer is not subject to —

(a)any prohibition under this Act about —

(i)engaging in legal practice in this jurisdiction; or

(ii)making representations about engaging in legal practice in this jurisdiction;

or

(b)conditions imposed on a local practising certificate,

in respect of the performance of the lawyer’s official duties or functions as an interstate government lawyer of the other jurisdiction to the extent that the lawyer is exempt from matters of the same kind under a law of the other jurisdiction.

(3)Contributions and levies are not payable to the Guarantee Fund by or in respect of an interstate government lawyer in his or her capacity as an interstate government lawyer.

(4)Without affecting the generality of subsection (2), that subsection extends to prohibitions under section 68 relating to professional indemnity insurance.

(5)Without affecting subsections (2), (3) and (4), nothing in this section prevents an interstate government lawyer from being granted or holding a local practising certificate.

80.Fees

(1)The Board may charge fees for the services that it provides.

(2)The fees set by the Board may be included in the legal profession or admission rules.

Part 6 — Inter‑jurisdictional provisions regarding admission and practising certificates

Division 1 — Preliminary

81.Purpose

The purpose of this Part is to provide a nationally consistent scheme for the notification of and response to action taken by courts and other authorities in relation to the admission of persons to the legal profession and their right to engage in legal practice in Australia.

82.Other requirements not affected

This Division does not affect any functions under Part 13.

Division 2 — Notifications to be given by local authorities to interstate authorities

83.Official notification to other jurisdictions of applications for admission and associated matters

(1)This section applies if an application for admission to the legal profession is made under this Act.

(2)The Board may give the corresponding authority for another jurisdiction written notice of any of the following (as relevant) —

(a)the making of the application;

(b)the refusal to issue a compliance certificate in relation to the application;

(c)the withdrawal of the application after an inquiry is proposed or commenced in relation to the application;

(d)the refusal of the Supreme Court to admit the applicant to the legal profession under this Act.

(3)The notice must state the applicant’s name and address as last known to the Board and may contain other relevant information.

84.Official notification to other jurisdictions of removals from local roll

(1)This section applies if a person’s name is removed from the local roll, except where the removal occurs under section 90.

(2)The Principal Registrar must, as soon as practicable, give written notice of the removal to —

(a)the corresponding authority of every other jurisdiction; and

(b)the registrar or other proper officer of the High Court.

(3)The notice must state —

(a)the person’s name and address as last known to the Principal Registrar; and

(b)the date the person’s name was removed from the roll; and

(c)the reason for removing the person’s name.

(4)The notice may contain other relevant information.

85.Board to notify other jurisdictions of certain matters

(1)This section applies if —

(a)the Board takes any of the following actions —

(i)a refusal to grant an Australian lawyer a local practising certificate;

(ii)a suspension or cancellation or, or refusal to renew, an Australian lawyer’s local practising certificate;

or

(b)the decision of the Board to take the action is varied or set aside on review by the State Administrative Tribunal.

(2)The Board must, as soon as practicable, give the corresponding authorities of other jurisdictions written notice of the action taken or the result of the review.

(3)The notice must state —

(a)the lawyer’s name and address as last known to the Board; and

(b)particulars of —

(i)the action taken and the reasons for it; or

(ii)the result of the review.

(4)The notice may contain other relevant information.

(5)The Board may give corresponding authorities written notice of a condition imposed on an Australian lawyer’s local practising certificate.

Division 3 — Notifications to be given by lawyers to local authorities

86.Lawyer to give notice of removal of name from interstate roll

(1)If the name of a local lawyer or a local legal practitioner has been removed from an interstate roll, the lawyer or practitioner must, as soon as practicable after becoming aware of the removal, give the Principal Registrar and the Board a written notice of the removal.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(2)This section does not apply where the name has been removed from an interstate roll under a provision that corresponds to section 90.

87.Lawyer to give notice of interstate orders

(1)If an order is made under a corresponding law recommending that the name of a local lawyer be removed from the local roll, the lawyer must, as soon as practicable after becoming aware of the order, give the Board written notice of the order.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(2)If an order is made under a corresponding law in relation to a local legal practitioner that —

(a)the practitioner’s local practising certificate be suspended or cancelled; or

(b)a local practising certificate not be granted to the practitioner for a period; or

(c)conditions be imposed on the practitioner’s local practising certificate,

the practitioner must, as soon as practicable after becoming aware of the order, give the Board written notice of the order.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

88.Lawyer to give notice of foreign regulatory action

If foreign regulatory action has been taken in relation to a local lawyer or a local legal practitioner, the lawyer or practitioner must, as soon as practicable, give the Board written notice of the action taken.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

89.Provisions relating to requirement to notify

A notice to be given under this Division by a person must —

(a)state the person’s name and address; and

(b)disclose full details of the action to which the notice relates, including the date on which that action was taken; and

(c)be accompanied by a copy of any official notification provided to the person in connection with that action.

Division 4 — Taking of action by local authorities in response to notifications received

90.Peremptory removal of local lawyer’s name from local roll following removal in another jurisdiction

(1)This section applies if the Principal Registrar is satisfied that —

(a)a local lawyer’s name has been removed from an interstate roll; and

(b)no order referred to in section 94(1) is, at the time of that removal, in force in relation to it.

(2)The Principal Registrar must remove the lawyer’s name from the local roll.

(3)The Principal Registrar may, but need not, give the lawyer notice of the date on which the Principal Registrar proposes to remove the name from the local roll.

(4)The Principal Registrar must, as soon as practicable, give the former local lawyer notice of the removal of the name from the local roll, unless notice of the date of the proposed removal was previously given.

(5)The name of the former local lawyer is, on the application of the lawyer to the Principal Registrar or on the Principal Registrar’s own initiative, to be restored to the local roll if the name is restored to the interstate roll.

(6)Nothing in this section prevents the former local lawyer from afterwards applying for admission under Part 4.

91.Peremptory cancellation of local practising certificate following removal of name from interstate roll

(1)This section applies if —

(a)a person’s name is removed from an interstate roll but the person remains an Australian lawyer; and

(b)the person is the holder of a local practising certificate; and

(c)no order referred to in section 95(1) is, at the time of that removal, in force in relation to it.

(2)The Board must cancel the local practising certificate as soon as practicable after receiving official written notification of the removal.

(3)The Board may, but need not, give the person notice of the date on which the Board proposes to cancel the local practising certificate.

(4)The Board must, as soon as practicable, give the person notice of the cancellation, unless notice of the date of the proposed cancellation was previously given.

(5)Nothing in this section prevents the former local lawyer from afterwards applying for a local practising certificate.

92.Show cause procedure for removal of lawyer’s name from local roll following foreign regulatory action

(1)The section applies if the Board is satisfied that —

(a)foreign regulatory action has been taken in relation to a local lawyer, whether before or after the commencement of this section; and

(b)no order referred to in section 94(1) is in force in relation to the action taken.

(2)The Board may serve on the lawyer a notice stating that the Board will apply to the Supreme Court (full bench) for an order that the lawyer’s name be removed from the local roll unless the lawyer shows cause to the Board why the lawyer’s name should not be removed.

(3)If the lawyer does not satisfy the Board that the lawyer’s name should not be removed from the local roll, the Board may apply to the Supreme Court (full bench) for an order that the lawyer’s name be removed from the local roll.

(4)Before applying for an order that the lawyer’s name be removed, the Board must afford the lawyer a reasonable opportunity to show cause why the lawyer’s name should not be removed.

(5)The Supreme Court (full bench) may, on application made under this section, order that the lawyer’s name be removed from the local roll, or may refuse to do so.

(6)The lawyer is entitled to appear before and be heard by the Supreme Court at a hearing in respect of an application under this section.

93.Show cause procedure for cancellation of local practising certificate following foreign regulatory action

(1)The section applies if the Board is satisfied that —

(a)foreign regulatory action has been taken in relation to a local legal practitioner, whether before or after the commencement of this section; and

(b)no order referred to in section 95(1) is in force in relation to the action taken.

(2)The Board may serve on the practitioner a notice stating that the Board proposes to cancel the practitioner’s local practising certificate unless the practitioner shows cause to the Board why the practising certificate should not be cancelled.

(3)The Board must afford the practitioner a reasonable opportunity to show cause why the practitioner’s practising certificate should not be cancelled.

(4)If the practitioner does not satisfy the Board that the practising certificate should not be cancelled, the Board may cancel the certificate.

(5)The Board must, as soon as practicable, give the practitioner an information notice about its decision to cancel the practising certificate.

(6)The practitioner may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for a review of the decision of the Board to cancel the practising certificate.

94.Order for non‑removal of name

(1)If an Australian lawyer reasonably expects that the lawyer’s name will be removed from an interstate roll or that foreign regulatory action will be taken against the lawyer, the lawyer may apply to the Supreme Court for an order that the lawyer’s name not be removed from the local roll under section 90 or 92.

(2)The Supreme Court may make the order applied for if satisfied that —

(a)the lawyer’s name is likely to be removed from the interstate roll or the foreign regulatory action is likely to be taken; and

(b)the reason for the removal of the name or the taking of the foreign regulatory action will not involve disciplinary action or the possibility of disciplinary action,

or may refuse to make an order.

(3)An order under this section may be made subject to any conditions the Supreme Court considers appropriate, and remains in force for the period specified in it.

(4)The Supreme Court may revoke an order made under this section, and sections 90 and 92 then apply as if the lawyer’s name were removed from the interstate roll or the foreign regulatory action were taken when the revocation takes effect.

(5)Nothing in this section affects action being taken in relation to the lawyer under other provisions of this Act.

95.Order for non‑cancellation of local practising certificate

(1)If an Australian lawyer reasonably expects that the lawyer’s name will be removed from an interstate roll or that foreign regulatory action will be taken against the lawyer, the lawyer may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for an order that the lawyer’s local practising certificate not be cancelled under section 91 or 93.

(2)The State Administrative Tribunal may make the order applied for if satisfied that —

(a)the lawyer’s name is likely to be removed from the interstate roll or the foreign regulatory action is likely to be taken; and

(b)the reason for the removal of the name or the taking of the foreign regulatory action will not involve disciplinary action or the possibility of disciplinary action,

or may refuse to make an order.

(3)An order under this section may be made subject to any conditions the State Administrative Tribunal considers appropriate, and remains in force for the period specified in it.

(4)The State Administrative Tribunal may revoke an order made under this section, and sections 91 and 93 then apply as if the lawyer’s name were removed from the interstate roll or the foreign regulatory action were taken when the revocation takes effect.

(5)Nothing in this section affects action being taken in relation to the lawyer under other provisions of this Act.

96.Local authority may give information to other local authorities

An authority of this jurisdiction that receives information from an authority of another jurisdiction under provisions of a corresponding law that correspond to this Part may give the information to other authorities of this jurisdiction that have functions under this Act.

Part 7 — Incorporated legal practices and multi‑disciplinary partnerships

Division 1 — Preliminary

97.Purposes

The purposes of this Part are as follows: —

(a)to regulate the provision of legal services by corporations in this jurisdiction; and

(b)to regulate the provision of legal services in this jurisdiction in conjunction with the provision of other services (whether by a corporation or persons acting in partnership with each other).

98.Terms used

In this Part —

legal practitioner director means a director of an incorporated legal practice who is an Australian legal practitioner holding an unrestricted practising certificate;

legal practitioner partner means a partner of a multi‑disciplinary partnership who is an Australian legal practitioner holding an unrestricted practising certificate;

officer means —

(a)in relation to a company within the meaning given in the Corporations Act — an officer within the meaning given in section 9 of that Act; or

(b)in relation to any other body corporate, or body corporate of a kind, prescribed by the regulations — a person specified or described in the regulations;

professional obligations of an Australian legal practitioner include —

(a)duties to the Supreme Court; and

(b)obligations in connection with conflicts of interest; and

(c)duties to clients, including disclosure; and

(d)ethical rules required to be observed by the practitioner;

related body corporate means —

(a)in relation to a company within the meaning given in the Corporations Act — a related body corporate within the meaning given in section 50 of that Act; or

(b)in relation to any other body corporate, or body corporate of a kind, prescribed by the regulations — a person specified or described in the regulations.

Division 2 — Incorporated legal practices providing legal services

99.Nature of incorporated legal practice

(1)An incorporated legal practice is a corporation that engages in legal practice in this jurisdiction, whether or not it also provides services that are not legal services.

(2)However, a corporation is not an incorporated legal practice if —

(a)the corporation does not receive any form of, or have an expectation of, a fee, gain or reward for the legal services it provides; or

(b)the only legal services that the corporation provides are any or all of the following services —

(i)in‑house legal services, namely, legal services provided to the corporation concerning a proceeding or transaction to which the corporation (or a related body corporate) is a party;

(ii)services that are not legally required to be provided by an Australian legal practitioner and that are provided by an officer or an employee who is not an Australian legal practitioner;

or

(c)this Part or the regulations so provide.

(3)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the application (with or without specified modifications) of provisions of this Act to corporations that are not incorporated legal practices because of the operation of subsection (2).

(4)Nothing in this Part affects or applies to the provision by an incorporated legal practice of legal services in one or more other jurisdictions.

100.Non‑legal services and businesses of incorporated legal practices

(1)An incorporated legal practice may provide any service and conduct any business that the corporation may lawfully provide or conduct, except as provided by this section.

(2)An incorporated legal practice or a related body corporate of an incorporated legal practice must not conduct a managed investment scheme.

(3)The regulations may prohibit an incorporated legal practice or a related body corporate of the practice from providing a service or conducting a business of a kind specified by the regulations.

101.Corporations eligible to be incorporated legal practice

(1)Any corporation is, subject to this Part, eligible to be an incorporated legal practice.

(2)This section does not authorise a corporation to provide legal services if the corporation is prohibited from doing so under any Act or law (whether of this jurisdiction, the Commonwealth or any other jurisdiction) under which it is incorporated or its affairs are regulated.

(3)An incorporated legal practice is not itself required to hold an Australian practising certificate.

102.Notice of intention to start providing legal services

(1)Before a corporation starts to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction, the corporation must give the Board written notice, in the approved form, of its intention to do so.

(2)A corporation must not engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction if it is in default of this section.

Penalty: a fine of $25 000.

(3)A corporation that starts to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction without giving a notice under subsection (1) is in default of this section until it gives the Board written notice, in the approved form, of the failure to comply with that subsection and the fact that it has started to engage in legal practice.

(4)The giving of a notice under subsection (3) does not affect a corporation’s liability under subsection (1) or (2).

(5)A corporation is not entitled to recover any amount for anything the corporation did in contravention of subsection (2).

(6)A person may recover from a corporation or a legal practitioner associate of the corporation, as a debt due to the person, any amount the person paid to or at the direction of the corporation for anything the corporation did in contravention of subsection (2).

(7)This section does not apply to a corporation that is not an incorporated legal practice because of section 99(2).

103.Prohibition on representations that corporation is incorporated legal practice

(1)A corporation must not, without reasonable excuse, represent or advertise that the corporation is an incorporated legal practice unless a notice in relation to the corporation has been given under section 102.

Penalty: a fine of $50 000.

(2)A director, officer, employee or agent of a corporation must not, without reasonable excuse, represent or advertise that the corporation is an incorporated legal practice unless a notice in relation to the corporation has been given under section 102.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(3)A reference in this section to a corporation representing or advertising that the corporation is an incorporated legal practice includes a reference to the corporation doing anything that states or implies that the corporation is entitled to engage in legal practice.

(4)A reference in this section to director, officer, employee or agent of a corporation representing or advertising that the corporation is an incorporated legal practice includes a reference to the director, officer, employee or agent doing anything that states or implies that the corporation is entitled to engage in legal practice.

104.Notice of corporation ceasing to engage in legal practice

(1)A corporation must, within the period prescribed by the regulations after it ceases to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction as an incorporated legal practice, give the Board a written notice, in the approved form, of that fact.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(2)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to determining whether and when a corporation ceases to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction.

105.Incorporated legal practice must have legal practitioner director

(1)An incorporated legal practice is required to have at least one legal practitioner director.

(2)Each legal practitioner director of an incorporated legal practice is, for the purposes only of this Act, responsible for the management of the legal services provided in this jurisdiction by the incorporated legal practice.

(3)Each legal practitioner director of an incorporated legal practice must ensure that appropriate management systems are implemented and maintained to enable the provision of legal services by the incorporated legal practice —

(a)in accordance with the professional obligations of Australian legal practitioners and other obligations imposed under this Act; and

(b)so that those obligations of Australian legal practitioners who are officers or employees of the practice are not affected by other officers or employees of the practice.

(4)If it ought reasonably to be apparent to a legal practitioner director of an incorporated legal practice that the provision of legal services by the practice will result in breaches of the professional obligations of an Australian legal practitioner or other obligations imposed under this Act, the director must take all reasonable action available to the director to ensure that —

(a)the breaches do not occur; and

(b)appropriate remedial action is taken in relation to the breaches that do occur.

(5)Nothing in this Part derogates from the obligations or liabilities of a director of an incorporated legal practice under any other law.

(6)The reference in subsection (1) to a legal practitioner director does not include a reference to a person who is not validly appointed as a director, but this subsection does not affect the meaning of the expression legal practitioner director in other provisions of this Act.

106.Obligations of legal practitioner director relating to misconduct

(1)Each of the following is capable of constituting unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct by a legal practitioner director —

(a)unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct of an Australian legal practitioner employed by the incorporated legal practice;

(b)conduct of any other director (not being an Australian legal practitioner) of the incorporated legal practice that adversely affects the provision of legal services by the practice;

(c)the unsuitability of any other director (not being an Australian legal practitioner) of the incorporated legal practice to be a director of a corporation that provides legal services.

(2)A legal practitioner director is not guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct under subsection (1) if the director establishes that the director took all reasonable steps to ensure that —

(a)Australian legal practitioners employed by the incorporated legal practice did not engage in conduct or misconduct referred to in subsection (1)(a); or

(b)directors (not being Australian legal practitioners) of the incorporated legal practice did not engage in conduct referred to in subsection (1)(b); or

(c)unsuitable directors (not being Australian legal practitioners) of the incorporated legal practice were not appointed or holding office as referred to in subsection (1)(c),

as the case requires.

(3)A legal practitioner director of an incorporated legal practice must ensure that all reasonable action available to the legal practitioner director is taken to deal with any unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct of an Australian legal practitioner employed by the practice.

107.Incorporated legal practice without legal practitioner director

(1)An incorporated legal practice contravenes this subsection if it does not have any legal practitioner directors for a period exceeding 7 days.

Penalty: a fine of $50 000.

(2)If an incorporated legal practice ceases to have any legal practitioner directors, the practice must notify the Board as soon as possible.

Penalty: a fine of $50 000.

(3)An incorporated legal practice must not provide legal services in this jurisdiction during any period it is in default of director requirements under this section.

Penalty: a fine of $25 000.

(4)An incorporated legal practice that contravenes subsection (1) is taken to be in default of director requirements under this section for the period from the end of the period of 7 days until —

(a)it has at least one legal practitioner director; or

(b)a person is appointed under this section or a corresponding law in relation to the practice.

(5)The Board may, if it thinks it appropriate, appoint an Australian legal practitioner who is an employee of the incorporated legal practice or another Australian legal practitioner nominated by the Board, in the absence of a legal practitioner director, to exercise the functions conferred or imposed on a legal practitioner director under this Part.

(6)An Australian legal practitioner is not eligible to be appointed under this section unless the practitioner holds an unrestricted practising certificate.

(7)The appointment under this section of a person to exercise the functions of a legal practitioner director does not, for any other purpose, confer or impose on the person any of the other functions or duties of a director of the incorporated legal practice.

(8)An incorporated legal practice does not contravene subsection (1) during any period during which a person holds an appointment under this section in relation to the practice.

(9)A reference in this section to a legal practitioner director does not include a reference to a person who is not validly appointed as a director, but this subsection does not affect the meaning of the expression legal practitioner director in other provisions of this Act.

108.Obligations and privileges of practitioners who are officers or employees

(1)An Australian legal practitioner who provides legal services for an incorporated legal practice in the capacity of an officer or employee of the incorporated legal practice —

(a)is not excused from compliance with the professional obligations, or any obligations under any law, of an Australian legal practitioner; and

(b)does not lose the professional privileges of an Australian legal practitioner.

(2)For the purposes only of subsection (1), the professional obligations and professional privileges of an Australian legal practitioner apply as if —

(a)where there are 2 or more legal practitioner directors of an incorporated legal practice — the practice were a partnership of the legal practitioner directors and the employees of the practice were employees of the legal practitioner directors; or

(b)where there is only one legal practitioner director of an incorporated legal practice — the practice were a sole practitioner and the employees of the practice were employees of the legal practitioner director.

(3)The law relating to client legal privilege (or other legal professional privilege) is not excluded or otherwise affected because an Australian legal practitioner is acting in the capacity of an officer or employee of an incorporated legal practice.

(4)The directors of an incorporated legal practice do not breach their duties as directors merely because legal services are provided pro bono by an Australian legal practitioner employed by the practice.

109.Professional indemnity insurance

(1)An incorporated legal practice must comply with the obligations of an incorporated legal practice under this Act relating to professional indemnity insurance.

(2)Subsection (1) does not affect an obligation of an Australian legal practitioner who is a legal practitioner director or an officer or employee of an incorporated legal practice to comply with the obligations of an Australian legal practitioner under this Act relating to professional indemnity insurance, and the Australian legal practitioner must comply with those requirements accordingly.

(3)If subsection (1) or (2) is not complied with the Board may —

(a)for a legal practitioner director who holds a local practising certificate — suspend the director’s practising certificate while the failure continues; or

(b)for a legal practitioner director who is an interstate legal practitioner —

(i)suspend the director’s entitlement under Part 5 to practise in this jurisdiction while the failure to comply continues; and

(ii)ask the corresponding authority in the practitioner’s home jurisdiction to suspend the director’s interstate practising certificate until the Board tells the corresponding authority that this section has been complied with.

110.Conflicts of interest

(1)For the purposes of the application of any law (including the common law) or legal profession rule relating to conflicts of interest to the conduct of an Australian legal practitioner who is —

(a)a legal practitioner director of an incorporated legal practice; or

(b)an officer or employee of an incorporated legal practice,

the interests of the incorporated legal practice or any related body corporate are also taken to be those of the practitioner (in addition to any interests that the practitioner has apart from this subsection).

(2)Legal profession rules may be made for or with respect to additional duties and obligations in connection with conflicts of interest arising out of the conduct of an incorporated legal practice.

111.Disclosure obligations

(1)This section applies if a person engages an incorporated legal practice to provide services that the person might reasonably assume to be legal services, but does not apply if the practice provides only legal services in this jurisdiction.

(2)Each legal practitioner director of the incorporated legal practice, and any employee who is an Australian legal practitioner and who provides the services on behalf of the practice, must ensure that a disclosure, complying with the requirements of this section and the regulations made for the purposes of this section, is made to the person in connection with the provision of the services.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(3)The disclosure must be made by giving the person a notice in writing —

(a)setting out the services to be provided; and

(b)stating whether or not all the legal services to be provided will be provided by an Australian legal practitioner; and

(c)if some or all of the legal services will not be provided by an Australian legal practitioner — identifying those services and indicating the status or qualifications of the person or persons who will provide the services; and

(d)stating that this Act applies to the provision of legal services but not to the provision of the non‑legal services.

(4)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the following matters —

(a)the manner in which disclosure is to be made;

(b)additional matters required to be disclosed in connection with the provision of legal services or non‑legal services by an incorporated legal practice.

(5)Without limiting subsection (4), the additional matters may include the kind of services provided by the incorporated legal practice and whether those services are or are not covered by the insurance or other provisions of this Act.

(6)A disclosure under this section to a person about the provision of legal services may relate to the provision of legal services on one occasion or on more than one occasion or on an ongoing basis.

112.Effect of non‑disclosure on provision of certain services

(1)This section applies if —

(a)section 111 applies in relation to a service that is provided to a person who has engaged an incorporated legal practice to provide the service and that the person might reasonably assume to be a legal service; and

(b)a disclosure has not been made under that section about that service.

(2)The standard of care owed by the practice in relation to the service is the standard that would be applicable if the service had been provided by an Australian legal practitioner.

113.Application of legal profession rules

Legal profession rules, so far as they apply to Australian legal practitioners, also apply to Australian legal practitioners who are officers or employees of an incorporated legal practice, unless the rules otherwise provide.

114.Requirements relating to advertising

(1)Any restriction imposed under this Act or another Act in connection with advertising by Australian legal practitioners applies to advertising by an incorporated legal practice with respect to the provision of legal services.

(2)If a restriction mentioned in subsection (1) is limited to a particular branch of the legal profession or persons who practise in a particular style of legal practice, the restriction applies only to the extent that the incorporated legal practice carries on the business of that branch of the legal profession or in that particular style of legal practice.

(3)Any advertisement of the kind referred to in this section is, for the purposes of disciplinary proceedings taken against an Australian legal practitioner, taken to have been authorised by each legal practitioner director of the incorporated legal practice.

(4)This section does not apply if the provision by which the restriction is imposed expressly excludes its application to incorporated legal practices.

115.Extension of vicarious liability relating to failure to account, pay or deliver and dishonesty to incorporated legal practices

(1)This section applies to any of the following proceedings (being proceedings based on the vicarious liability of an incorporated legal practice) —

(a)civil proceedings relating to a failure to account for, pay or deliver money or property received by, or entrusted to, the practice (or to any officer or employee of the practice) in the course of the provision of legal services by the practice, being money or property under the direct or indirect control of the practice;

(b)civil proceedings for any other debt owed, or damages payable, to a client as a result of a dishonest act or omission by an Australian legal practitioner who is an employee of the practice in connection with the provision of legal services to the client.

(2)If the incorporated legal practice would not (but for this section) be vicariously liable for any acts or omissions of its officers and employees in those proceedings, but would be liable for those acts or omissions if the practice and those officers and employees were carrying on business in partnership, the practice is taken to be vicariously liable for those acts or omissions.

116.Sharing of receipts, revenue or other income

(1)Nothing under this Act prevents an Australian legal practitioner from sharing with an incorporated legal practice receipts, revenue or other income arising from the provision of legal services by the practitioner.

(2)This section does not extend to the sharing of receipts, revenue or other income in contravention of section 117.

117.Disqualified persons

(1)An incorporated legal practice commits an offence if a disqualified person —

(a)is an officer or employee of the incorporated legal practice (whether or not the person provides legal services) or is an officer or employee of a related body corporate; or

(b)is a partner of the incorporated legal practice in a business that includes the provision of legal services; or

(c)shares the receipts, revenue or other income arising from the provision of legal services by the incorporated legal practice; or

(d)is engaged or paid in connection with the provision of legal services by the incorporated legal practice.

Penalty: a fine of $15 000.

(2)The failure of a legal practitioner director of an incorporated legal practice to ensure that the practice complies with subsection (1) is capable of constituting unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct.

118.Audit of incorporated legal practice

(1)The Board or the Complaints Committee may conduct an audit of —

(a)the compliance of an incorporated legal practice (and of its officers and employees) with the requirements of —

(i)this Part; or

(ii)the regulations or the legal profession rules, so far as they relate specifically to incorporated legal practices;

and

(b)the management of the provision of legal services by the incorporated legal practice (including the supervision of officers and employees providing the services).

(2)The Board or the Complaints Committee may, in writing, appoint a suitably qualified person to conduct an audit under this section.

(3)The appointment may be made generally, or in relation to a particular incorporated legal practice, or in relation to a particular audit.

(4)An audit may be conducted whether or not a complaint has been made against an Australian lawyer with respect to the provision of legal services by the incorporated legal practice.

(5)A report of an audit —

(a)must be provided to the incorporated legal practice concerned; and

(b)may be provided by the Board to the Complaints Committee or by the Complaints Committee to the Board; and

(c)may be provided by the Board or the Complaints Committee to a corresponding authority; and

(d)may be taken into account in connection with any disciplinary proceedings taken against legal practitioner directors or other persons or in connection with the grant, amendment, suspension or cancellation of Australian practising certificates.

(6)The Board must notify the Complaints Committee, and the Complaints Committee must notify the Board, when it commences an audit.

(7)Part 15 applies to an audit under this section.

119.Banning of incorporated legal practices

(1)The State Administrative Tribunal may, on the application of the Board or the Complaints Committee, make an order disqualifying a corporation from providing legal services in this jurisdiction for the period the Tribunal considers appropriate if satisfied that —

(a)a ground for disqualifying the corporation under this section has been established; and

(b)the disqualification is justified.

(2)An order under this section may, if the State Administrative Tribunal thinks it appropriate, be made —

(a)subject to conditions as to the conduct of the incorporated legal practice; or

(b)subject to conditions as to when or in what circumstances the order is to take effect; or

(c)together with orders to safeguard the interests of clients of the incorporated legal practice who have been or are to be provided with legal services by the practice, and the employees or officers of the incorporated legal practice.

(3)Action may be taken against an incorporated legal practice on any of the following grounds —

(a)that a legal practitioner director or an Australian legal practitioner who is an officer or employee of the corporation is found guilty of professional misconduct under a law of this jurisdiction or another jurisdiction;

(b)that the Board or the Complaints Committee is satisfied, after conducting an audit of the incorporated legal practice, that the incorporated legal practice has failed to implement satisfactory management and supervision of its provision of legal services;

(c)that the incorporated legal practice (or a related body corporate) has contravened section 100 or a regulation made under that section;

(d)that the incorporated legal practice has contravened section 117;

(e)that a person who is an officer of the incorporated legal practice and who is the subject of an order under —

(i)section 120 or under provisions of a corresponding law that correspond to that section; or

(ii)section 145 or under provisions of a corresponding law that correspond to that section,

is acting in the management of the incorporated legal practice.

(4)If a corporation is disqualified under this section, the Board must, as soon as practicable, notify the corresponding authority of every other jurisdiction.

(5)If a corporation is disqualified from providing legal services in another jurisdiction under a corresponding law, the Board may determine that the corporation is taken to be disqualified from providing legal services in this jurisdiction for the same period, but nothing in this subsection prevents the Board from instead applying for an order under this section.

(6)A corporation that provides legal services in contravention of a disqualification under this section commits an offence.

Penalty: a fine of $50 000.

(7)A corporation that is disqualified under this section ceases to be an incorporated legal practice.

(8)Conduct of an Australian legal practitioner who provides legal services on behalf of a corporation in the capacity of an officer or employee of the corporation is capable of constituting unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct if the practitioner ought reasonably to have known that the corporation is disqualified under this section.

(9)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the publication and notification of orders made under this section, including notification of corresponding authorities of other jurisdictions.

120.Disqualification from managing incorporated legal practice

(1)The State Administrative Tribunal may, on the application of the Board, make an order disqualifying a person from managing a corporation that is an incorporated legal practice for the period the Tribunal considers appropriate if satisfied that —

(a)the person is a person who could be disqualified under section 206C, 206D, 206E or 206F of the Corporations Act from managing corporations; and

(b)the disqualification is justified.

(2)The State Administrative Tribunal may, on the application of a person subject to a disqualification order under this section, revoke the order.

(3)A disqualification order made under this section has effect for the purposes only of this Act and does not affect the application or operation of the Corporations Act.

(4)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the publication and notification of orders made under this section.

(5)A person who is disqualified from managing a corporation under provisions of a corresponding law that correspond to this section is taken to be disqualified from managing a corporation under this section.

121.Disclosure of information to Australian Securities and Investments Commission

(1)In this section —

authorised person means —

(a)the Board; or

(b)the Complaints Committee; or

(c)the Law Complaints Officer; or

(d)the President of the State Administrative Tribunal or a member of staff of the Tribunal.

(2)This section applies if an authorised person, in connection with performing functions under this Act, acquired information concerning a corporation that is or was an incorporated legal practice.

(3)The authorised person may disclose to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission information concerning the corporation that is relevant to the Commission’s functions.

(4)Information may be provided under subsection (3) despite any law relating to secrecy or confidentiality, including any provisions of this Act.

122.External administration proceedings under Corporations Act

(1)This section applies to proceedings in any court under the Corporations Act Chapter 5 —

(a)relating to a corporation that is an externally‑administered body corporate under that Act and that is or was an incorporated legal practice; or

(b)relating to a corporation that is or was an incorporated legal practice becoming an externally‑administered body corporate under that Act.

(2)The Board is entitled to intervene in the proceedings, unless the court determines that the proceedings do not concern or affect the provision of legal services by the incorporated legal practice.

(3)The court may, when exercising its jurisdiction in the proceedings, have regard to the interests of the clients of the incorporated legal practice who have been or are to be provided with legal services by the practice.

(4)Subsection (3) does not authorise the court to make any decision that is contrary to a specific provision of the Corporations Act.

(5)The provisions of subsections (2) and (3) are declared to be Corporations legislation displacement provisions for the purposes of the Corporations Act section 5G in relation to the provisions of Chapter 5 of that Act.

123.External administration proceedings under other legislation

(1)This section applies to proceedings for the external administration (however expressed) of an incorporated legal practice, but does not apply to proceedings to which section 122 applies.

(2)The Board is entitled to intervene in the proceedings, unless the court determines that the proceedings do not concern or affect the provision of legal services by the incorporated legal practice.

(3)The court may, when exercising its jurisdiction in the proceedings, have regard to the interests of the clients of the incorporated legal practice who have been or are to be provided with legal services by the practice.

(4)Subsection (3) does not authorise the court to make any decision that is contrary to a specific provision of any legislation applicable to the incorporated legal practice.

124.Incorporated legal practice is subject to receivership under this Act and external administration under Corporations Act

(1)In this section —

Corporations Act administrator means —

(a)a receiver, receiver and manager, liquidator (including a provisional liquidator), controller, administrator or deed administrator appointed under the Corporations Act; or

(b)a person who is appointed to exercise powers under the Corporations Act and who is prescribed, or of a class prescribed, by the regulations for the purposes of this definition;

LP receiver means a receiver appointed under Part 14.

(2)This section applies if a corporation that is or was an incorporated legal practice is the subject of both —

(a)the appointment of an LP receiver; and

(b)the appointment of a Corporations Act administrator.

(3)The LP receiver is under a duty to tell the Corporations Act administrator of the appointment of the LP receiver, whether the appointment precedes, follows or happens at the same time as the appointment of the Corporations Act administrator.

(4)The LP receiver or the Corporations Act administrator (or both of them jointly) may apply to the Supreme Court for the resolution of issues arising from or in relation to the dual appointments and their respective powers, except if proceedings mentioned in section 122 have been started.

(5)The Supreme Court may make any orders it considers appropriate, and no liability attaches to the LP receiver or the Corporations Act administrator for any act or omission done by the receiver or administrator in good faith for the purposes of carrying out or acting in accordance with the orders.

(6)The Board is entitled to intervene in the proceeding, unless the court decides that the proceeding does not concern or affect the provision of legal services by the incorporated legal practice.

(7)The provisions of subsections (4) and (5) are declared to be Corporations legislation displacement provisions for section 5G of the Corporations Act in relation to the provisions of Chapter 5 of that Act.

125.Incorporated legal practice that is subject to receivership under this Act and external administration under other legislation

(1)In this section —

external administrator means a person who is appointed to exercise powers under other legislation (whether or not legislation of this jurisdiction) and who is prescribed, or of a class prescribed, by the regulations for the purposes of this definition;

LP receiver means a receiver appointed under Part 14.

(2)This section applies if an incorporated legal practice is the subject of both —

(a)the appointment of an LP receiver; and

(b)the appointment of an external administrator.

(3)The LP receiver is under a duty to tell the external administrator of the appointment of the LP receiver, whether the appointment precedes, follows or happens at the same time as the appointment of the external administrator.

(4)The LP receiver or the external administrator (or both of them jointly) may apply to the Supreme Court for the resolution of issues arising from or in relation to the dual appointments and their respective powers.

(5)The Supreme Court may make any orders it considers appropriate, and no liability attaches to the LP receiver or the external administrator for any act or omission done by the receiver or administrator in good faith for the purposes of carrying out or acting in accordance with the orders.

(6)The Board is entitled to intervene in the proceeding, unless the court decides that the proceeding does not concern or affect the provision of legal services by the incorporated legal practice.

126.Cooperation between courts

Courts and tribunals of this jurisdiction may make arrangements for communicating and cooperating with other courts and tribunals in connection with the exercise of powers under this Part.

127.Relationship of Act to constitution of incorporated legal practice

The provisions of this Act that apply to an incorporated legal practice prevail, to the extent of any inconsistency, over the constitution or other constituent documents of the practice.

128.Relationship of Act to legislation establishing incorporated legal practice

(1)This section applies to a corporation, established by or under a law (whether or not of this jurisdiction), that is an incorporated legal practice but is not a company under the Corporations Act.

(2)The provisions of this Act that apply to an incorporated legal practice prevail, to the extent of any inconsistency, over provisions of the legislation under which the corporation is established or regulated that are specified or described in the regulations.

129.Relationship of Act to Corporations legislation

(1)In this section —

matter includes act, omission, body, person or thing.

(2)The regulations may declare any provision of this Act that relates to an incorporated legal practice to be a Corporations legislation displacement provision for the purposes of the Corporations Act section 5G.

(3)The regulations may declare any matter relating to an incorporated legal practice that is prohibited, required, authorised or permitted under this Act to be an excluded matter for the purposes of the Corporations Act section 5F in relation to —

(a)the whole of the Corporations legislation; or

(b)a specified provision of the Corporations legislation; or

(c)the Corporations legislation other than a specified provision; or

(d)the Corporations legislation other than to a specified extent.

130.Undue influence

A person (whether or not an officer or employee of an incorporated legal practice) must not cause or induce or attempt to cause or induce —

(a)a legal practitioner director; or

(b)another Australian legal practitioner who provides legal services on behalf of an incorporated legal practice,

to contravene this Act or his or her professional obligations as an Australian legal practitioner.

Penalty: a fine of $25 000.

Division 3 — Multi‑disciplinary partnerships

131.Nature of multi‑disciplinary partnership

(1)A multi‑disciplinary partnership is a partnership between one or more Australian legal practitioners and one or more other persons who are not Australian legal practitioners, where the business of the partnership includes the provision of legal services in this jurisdiction as well as other services.

(2)However, a partnership consisting only of one or more Australian legal practitioners and one or more Australian‑registered foreign lawyers is not a multi‑disciplinary partnership.

(3)Nothing in this Division affects or applies to the provision by a multi‑disciplinary partnership of legal services in one or more other jurisdictions.

132.Conduct of multi‑disciplinary partnership

(1)An Australian legal practitioner may be in partnership with a person who is not an Australian legal practitioner, where the business of the partnership includes the provision of legal services.

(2)Subsection (1) does not prevent an Australian legal practitioner from being in partnership with a person who is not an Australian legal practitioner, where the business of the partnership does not include the provision of legal services.

(3)The regulations may prohibit an Australian legal practitioner from being in partnership with a person providing a service or conducting a business of a kind specified by the regulations, where the business of the partnership includes the provision of legal services.

133.Notice of intention to start practice in multi‑disciplinary partnership

A legal practitioner partner must, before starting to provide legal services in this jurisdiction as a member of a multi‑disciplinary partnership, give the Board written notice, in the approved form, of the partner’s intention to do so.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

134.General obligations of legal practitioner partners

(1)Each legal practitioner partner of a multi‑disciplinary partnership is, for the purposes only of this Act, responsible for the management of the legal services provided in this jurisdiction by the partnership.

(2)Each legal practitioner partner must ensure that appropriate management systems are implemented and maintained to enable the provision of legal services by the multi‑disciplinary partnership —

(a)in accordance with the professional obligations of Australian legal practitioners and other obligations imposed by this Act; and

(b)so that the professional obligations of legal practitioner partners and employees who are Australian legal practitioners are not affected by other partners and employees of the partnership.

135.Obligations of legal practitioner partner relating to misconduct

(1)Each of the following is capable of constituting unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct by a legal practitioner partner —

(a)unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct of an Australian legal practitioner employed by the multi‑disciplinary partnership;

(b)conduct of any other partner (not being an Australian legal practitioner) of the multi‑disciplinary partnership that adversely affects the provision of legal services by the partnership;

(c)the unsuitability of any other partner (not being an Australian legal practitioner) of the multi‑disciplinary partnership to be a member of a partnership that provides legal services.

(2)A legal practitioner partner of a multi‑disciplinary partnership must ensure that all reasonable action available to the legal practitioner partner is taken to deal with any unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct of an Australian legal practitioner employed by the partnership.

136.Actions of partner who is not Australian legal practitioner

A partner of a multi‑disciplinary partnership who is not an Australian legal practitioner does not contravene a provision of this Act merely because of any of the following —

(a)the partner is a member of a partnership and the partnership business includes the provision of legal services;

(b)the partner receives any fee, gain or reward for business of the partnership that is the business of an Australian legal practitioner;

(c)the partner holds out, advertises or represents himself or herself as a member of a partnership where the business of the partnership includes the provision of legal services;

(d)the partner shares with any other partner the receipts, revenue or other income of business of the partnership that is the business of an Australian legal practitioner,

unless the provision expressly applies to a partner of a multi‑disciplinary partnership who is not an Australian legal practitioner.

137.Obligations and privileges of practitioners who are partners or employees

(1)An Australian legal practitioner who provides legal services in the capacity of a partner or an employee of a multi‑disciplinary partnership —

(a)is not excused from compliance with the professional obligations, or any obligations under any law, of an Australian legal practitioner; and

(b)does not lose the professional privileges of an Australian legal practitioner.

(2)The law relating to client legal privilege (or other legal professional privilege) is not excluded or otherwise affected because an Australian legal practitioner is acting in the capacity of a partner or an employee of a multi‑disciplinary partnership.

138.Conflicts of interest

(1)For the purposes of the application of any law (including the common law) or legal profession rule relating to conflicts of interest to the conduct of an Australian legal practitioner who is —

(a)a legal practitioner partner of a multi‑disciplinary partnership; or

(b)an employee of a multi‑disciplinary partnership,

the interests of the partnership, or any partner of the multi‑disciplinary partnership, are also taken to be those of the practitioner concerned (in addition to any interests that the practitioner has apart from this subsection).

(2)Legal profession rules may be made for or with respect to additional duties and obligations in connection with conflicts of interest arising out of the conduct of a multi‑disciplinary partnership.

139.Disclosure obligations

(1)This section applies if a person engages a multi‑disciplinary partnership to provide services that the person might reasonably assume to be legal services.

(2)Each legal practitioner partner of the multi‑disciplinary partnership, and any employee of the partnership who is an Australian legal practitioner and who provides the services on behalf of the practice, must ensure that a disclosure, complying with the requirements of this section and the regulations made for the purposes of this section, is made to the person in connection with the provision of the services.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(3)The disclosure must be made by giving the person a notice in writing —

(a)setting out the services to be provided; and

(b)stating whether or not all the legal services to be provided will be provided by an Australian legal practitioner; and

(c)if some or all of the legal services will not be provided by an Australian legal practitioner — identifying those services and indicating the status or qualifications of the person or persons who will provide the services; and

(d)stating that this Act applies to the provision of legal services but not to the provision of the non‑legal services.

(4)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the following matters —

(a)the manner in which disclosure is to be made;

(b)additional matters required to be disclosed in connection with the provision of legal services or non‑legal services by a multi‑disciplinary partnership.

(5)Without limiting subsection (4), the additional matters may include the kind of services provided by the multi‑disciplinary partnership and whether those services are or are not covered by the insurance or other provisions of this Act.

(6)A disclosure under this section to a person about the provision of legal services may relate to the provision of legal services on one occasion or on more than one occasion or on an on‑going basis.

140.Effect of non‑disclosure on provision of certain services

(1)This section applies if —

(a)section 139 applies to a service that is provided to a person who has engaged a multi‑disciplinary partnership to provide the service and that the person might reasonably assume to be a legal service; and

(b)a disclosure has not been made under that section about that service.

(2)The standard of care owed by the multi‑disciplinary partnership in relation to the service is the standard that would be applicable if the service had been provided by an Australian legal practitioner.

141.Application of legal profession rules

Legal profession rules, so far as they apply to Australian legal practitioners, also apply to Australian legal practitioners who are legal practitioner partners or employees of a multi‑disciplinary partnership, unless the rules otherwise provide.

142.Requirements relating to advertising

(1)Any restriction imposed under this Act or another Act in connection with advertising by Australian legal practitioners applies to advertising by a multi‑disciplinary partnership with respect to the provision of legal services.

(2)If a restriction referred to in subsection (1) is limited to a particular branch of the legal profession or for persons who practise in a particular style of legal practice, the restriction applies only to the extent that the multi‑disciplinary partnership carries on the business of that branch of the legal profession or in that particular style of legal practice.

(3)An advertisement of the kind referred to in this section is, for the purposes of disciplinary proceedings taken against an Australian legal practitioner, taken to have been authorised by each legal practitioner partner of the multi‑disciplinary partnership.

(4)This section does not apply if the provision by which the restriction is imposed expressly excludes its application to multi‑disciplinary partnerships.

143.Sharing of receipts, revenue or other income

(1)Nothing under this Act prevents a legal practitioner partner, or an Australian legal practitioner who is an employee of a multi‑disciplinary partnership, from sharing receipts, revenue or other income arising from the provision of legal services by the partner or practitioner with a partner who is not an Australian legal practitioner.

(2)This section does not extend to the sharing of receipts in contravention of section 144.

144.Disqualified persons

A legal practitioner partner of a multi‑disciplinary partnership must not knowingly —

(a)be a partner of a disqualified person in the multi‑disciplinary partnership; or

(b)share with a disqualified person the receipts, revenue or other income arising from the provision of legal services by the multi‑disciplinary partnership; or

(c)employ or pay a disqualified person in connection with the provision of legal services by the multi‑disciplinary partnership.

Penalty: a fine of $15 000.

145.Prohibition on partnerships with certain partners who are not Australian legal practitioners

(1)This section applies to a person who —

(a)is not an Australian legal practitioner; and

(b)is or was the partner of an Australian legal practitioner.

(2)On application by the Board, the State Administrative Tribunal may make an order prohibiting any Australian legal practitioner from being a partner, in a business that includes the provision of legal services, of a specified person to whom this section applies if —

(a)the Tribunal is satisfied that the person is not a fit and proper person to be a partner; or

(b)the Tribunal is satisfied that the person has been guilty of conduct that, if the person were an Australian legal practitioner, would have constituted unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct; or

(c)in the case of a corporation, if the Tribunal is satisfied that the corporation has been disqualified from providing legal services in this jurisdiction or there are grounds for disqualifying the corporation from providing legal services in this jurisdiction.

(3)An order made under this section may be revoked by the State Administrative Tribunal on application by the Board or by the person against whom the order was made.

(4)The death of an Australian legal practitioner does not prevent an application being made for, or the making of, an order under this section in relation to a person who was a partner of the practitioner.

(5)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the publication and notification of orders made under this section.

146.Undue influence

A person (whether or not a partner or employee of a multi‑disciplinary partnership) must not cause or induce or attempt to cause or induce —

(a)a legal practitioner partner; or

(b)an employee of a multi‑disciplinary partnership who provides legal services and who is an Australian legal practitioner,

to contravene this Act or his or her professional obligations as an Australian legal practitioner.

Penalty: a fine of $25 000.

Division 4 — Miscellaneous

147.Obligations of individual practitioners not affected

Except as provided by this Part, nothing in this Part affects any obligation imposed on —

(a)a legal practitioner director or an Australian legal practitioner who is an employee of an incorporated legal practice; or

(b)a legal practitioner partner of, or an Australian legal practitioner who is an employee of, a multi‑disciplinary partnership,

under this Act or another Act in his or her capacity as an Australian legal practitioner.

148.Regulations

(1)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the following matters —

(a)the legal services provided by incorporated legal practices or legal practitioner partners or employees of multi‑disciplinary partnerships;

(b)other services provided by incorporated legal practices or legal practitioner partners or employees of multi‑disciplinary partnerships in circumstances in which a conflict of interest relating to the provision of legal services may arise.

(2)A regulation prevails over any inconsistent provision of the legal profession rules.

(3)A regulation may provide that a breach of the regulations is capable of constituting unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct —

(a)in the case of an incorporated legal practice — by a legal practitioner director, or by an Australian legal practitioner responsible for the breach, or both; or

(b)in the case of a multi‑disciplinary partnership — by a legal practitioner partner, or by an Australian legal practitioner responsible for the breach, or both.

Part 8 — Legal practice by foreign lawyers

Division 1 — Preliminary

149.Purpose

The purpose of this Part is to encourage and facilitate the internationalisation of legal services and the legal service sector by providing a framework for the regulation of the practice of foreign law in this jurisdiction by foreign lawyers as a recognised aspect of legal practice in this jurisdiction.

150.Terms used

In this Part —

Australia includes the external territories;

Australian law means law of the Commonwealth or of a jurisdiction;

foreign law means law of a foreign country;

foreign law practice means a partnership or corporate entity that is entitled to engage in legal practice in a foreign country;

foreign registration authority means an entity in a foreign country having the function, conferred by the law of the foreign country, of registering persons to engage in legal practice in the foreign country;

local registration certificate means a registration certificate given under this Part;

overseas‑registered foreign lawyer means a natural person who is properly registered to engage in legal practice in a foreign country by the foreign registration authority for the country;

practise foreign law means do work, or transact business, in this jurisdiction concerning foreign law, being work or business of a kind that, if it concerned the law of this jurisdiction, would ordinarily be done or transacted by an Australian legal practitioner;

registered, when used in connection with a foreign country, means having all necessary licences, approvals, admissions, certificates or other forms of authorisation (including practising certificates) required under legislation for engaging in legal practice in that country.

151.This Part does not apply to Australian legal practitioners

(1)This Part does not apply to an Australian legal practitioner (including an Australian legal practitioner who is also an overseas‑registered foreign lawyer).

(2)Accordingly, nothing in this Part requires or enables an Australian legal practitioner (including an Australian legal practitioner who is also an overseas‑registered foreign lawyer) to be registered as a foreign lawyer under this Act in order to practise foreign law in this jurisdiction.

Division 2 — Practice of foreign law

152.Requirement for registration

(1)A person must not practise foreign law in this jurisdiction unless the person is —

(a)an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer; or

(b)an Australian legal practitioner.

Penalty: a fine of $25 000.

(2)However, a person does not contravene subsection (1) if the person is an overseas‑registered foreign lawyer —

(a)who —

(i)practises foreign law in this jurisdiction for one or more periods that do not in aggregate exceed 90 days in any period of 12 months; or

(ii)is subject to a restriction imposed under the Migration Act 1958 of the Commonwealth that has the effect of limiting the period during which work may be done, or business transacted, in Australia by the person;

and

(b)who —

(i)does not maintain an office for the purpose of practising foreign law in this jurisdiction; or

(ii)does not become a partner or director of a law practice.

153.Entitlement of Australian‑registered foreign lawyer to practise in this jurisdiction

An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer is, subject to this Act, entitled to practise foreign law in this jurisdiction.

154.Scope of practice

(1)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer may provide only the following legal services in this jurisdiction —

(a)doing work, or transacting business, concerning the law of a foreign country where the lawyer is registered by the foreign registration authority for the country;

(b)legal services (including appearances) in relation to arbitration proceedings of a kind prescribed under the regulations;

(c)legal services (including appearances) in relation to proceedings before bodies other than courts, being proceedings in which the bodies concerned are not required to apply the rules of evidence and in which knowledge of the foreign law of a country referred to in paragraph (a) is essential;

(d)legal services for conciliation, mediation and other forms of consensual dispute resolution of a kind prescribed under the regulations.

(2)Nothing in this Act authorises an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer to appear in any court (except on the lawyer’s own behalf) or to practise Australian law in this jurisdiction.

(3)Despite subsection (2), an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer may advise on the effect of an Australian law if —

(a)the giving of advice on Australian law is necessarily incidental to the practice of foreign law; and

(b)the advice is expressly based on advice given on the Australian law by an Australian legal practitioner who is not an employee of the foreign lawyer.

155.Form of practice

(1)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer may (subject to any conditions attaching to the foreign lawyer’s registration) practise foreign law —

(a)on the foreign lawyer’s own account; or

(b)in partnership with one or more Australian‑registered foreign lawyers or one or more Australian legal practitioners, or both, in circumstances where, if the Australian‑registered foreign lawyer were an Australian legal practitioner, the partnership would be permitted under a law of this jurisdiction; or

(c)as a director or employee of an incorporated legal practice or a partner or employee of a multi‑disciplinary partnership that is permitted by a law of this jurisdiction; or

(d)as an employee of an Australian legal practitioner or law firm in circumstances where, if the Australian‑registered foreign lawyer were an Australian legal practitioner, the employment would be permitted under a law of this jurisdiction; or

(e)as an employee of an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer.

(2)An affiliation referred to in subsection (1)(b) to (e) does not entitle the Australian‑registered foreign lawyer to practise Australian law in this jurisdiction.

156.Application of Australian professional ethical and practice standards

(1)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer must not engage in any conduct in practising foreign law that would, if the conduct were engaged in by an Australian legal practitioner in practising Australian law in this jurisdiction, be capable of constituting professional misconduct or unsatisfactory professional conduct.

(2)Part 13 applies to a person who —

(a)is an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer; or

(b)was an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer when the relevant conduct allegedly occurred, but is no longer an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer (in which case Part 13 applies as if the person were an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer),

and so applies as if references in Part 13 to an Australian legal practitioner were references to a person of that kind.

(3)The regulations may make provision with respect to the application (with or without modification) of the provisions of Part 13 for the purposes of this section.

(4)Without limiting the matters that may be taken into account in deciding whether a person should be disciplined for a contravention of subsection (1), the following matters may be taken into account —

(a)whether the conduct of the person was consistent with the standard of professional conduct of the legal profession in any foreign country where the person is registered;

(b)whether the person contravened the subsection wilfully or without reasonable excuse.

(5)Without limiting any other provision of this section or the orders that may be made under Part 13 as applied by this section, the following orders may be made under that Part as applied by this section —

(a)an order that a person’s registration under this Act as a foreign lawyer be cancelled;

(b)an order that a person’s registration under a corresponding law as a foreign lawyer be cancelled.

157.Designation

(1)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer may use only the following designations —

(a)the lawyer’s own name;

(b)a title or business name the lawyer is authorised by law to use in a foreign country where the lawyer is registered by a foreign registration authority;

(c)subject to this section, the name of a foreign law practice with which the lawyer is affiliated or associated (whether as a partner, director, employee or otherwise);

(d)if the lawyer is a principal of any law practice in Australia whose principals include both one or more Australian‑registered foreign lawyers and one or more Australian legal practitioners — a description of the practice that includes references to both Australian legal practitioners and Australian‑registered foreign lawyers (for example: “Solicitors and locally registered foreign lawyers” or “Australian solicitors and US attorneys”).

(2)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer who is a principal of a foreign law practice may use the practice’s name in or in connection with practising foreign law in this jurisdiction only if —

(a)the lawyer indicates, on the lawyer’s letterhead or any other document used in this jurisdiction to identify the lawyer as an overseas‑registered foreign lawyer, that the foreign law practice practises only foreign law in this jurisdiction; and

(b)the lawyer has provided the Board with acceptable evidence that the lawyer is a principal of the foreign law practice.

(3)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer who is a principal of a foreign law practice may use the name of the practice as mentioned in this section whether or not other principals of the practice are Australian‑registered foreign lawyers.

(4)This section does not authorise the use of a name or other designation that contravenes any requirements of the law applicable in this jurisdiction concerning the use of business names or that is likely to lead to any confusion with the name of any established domestic law practice or foreign law practice in this jurisdiction.

[Section 157 amended: No. 6 of 2012 s. 41.]

158.Letterhead and other identifying documents

(1)In this section —

public document includes any business letter, statement of account, invoice, business card, and promotional and advertising material.

(2)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer must indicate, in each public document distributed by the lawyer in connection with the lawyer’s practice of foreign law, the fact that the lawyer is an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer and is restricted to the practice of foreign law.

(3)Subsection (2) is satisfied if the lawyer includes in the public document the words —

(a)“registered foreign lawyer” or “registered foreign practitioner”; and

(b)“entitled to practise foreign law only”.

(4)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer may (but need not) include any or all of the following on any public document —

(a)an indication of all foreign countries in which the lawyer is registered to engage in legal practice;

(b)a description of himself or herself, and any law practice with which the lawyer is affiliated or associated in any of the ways designated in section 157.

159.Advertising

(1)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer is required to comply with any advertising restrictions imposed by the Board or by law on the legal practice engaged in by an Australian legal practitioner that are relevant to the practice of law in this jurisdiction.

(2)Without limiting subsection (1), an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer must not advertise (or use any description on the lawyer’s letterhead or any other document used in this jurisdiction to identify the lawyer as a lawyer) in any way that —

(a)might reasonably be regarded as —

(i)false, misleading or deceptive; or

(ii)suggesting that the Australian‑registered foreign lawyer is an Australian legal practitioner;

or

(b)contravenes any requirement of the regulations.

160.Foreign lawyer employing Australian legal practitioner

(1)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer may employ one or more Australian legal practitioners.

(2)Employment of an Australian legal practitioner does not entitle an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer to practise Australian law in this jurisdiction.

(3)An Australian legal practitioner employed by an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer may practise foreign law.

(4)An Australian legal practitioner employed by an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer must not —

(a)provide advice on Australian law to, or for use by, the Australian‑registered foreign lawyer; or

(b)otherwise practise Australian law in this jurisdiction in the course of that employment.

(5)Subsection (4) does not apply to an Australian legal practitioner employed by a law firm a partner of which is an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer, if at least one other partner is an Australian legal practitioner.

(6)Any period of employment of an Australian legal practitioner by an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer cannot be used to satisfy a requirement imposed by a condition on a local practising certificate to complete a period of supervised legal practice.

161.Trust money and trust accounts

(1)The provisions of Part 9, and any other provisions of this Act relating to requirements for trust money and trust accounts apply (subject to this section) to Australian‑registered foreign lawyers in the same way as they apply to law practices and Australian legal practitioners.

(2)In this section, a reference to money is not limited to a reference to money in this jurisdiction.

(3)The regulations may make provision with respect to the application (with or without modification) of the provisions of this Act relating to trust money and trust accounts for the purposes of this section.

162.Professional indemnity insurance

(1)An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer must, at all times while practising foreign law in this jurisdiction, comply with one of the following —

(a)the foreign lawyer must have professional indemnity insurance that conforms with the requirements for professional indemnity insurance applicable for Australian legal practitioners in any jurisdiction;

(b)if the foreign lawyer does not have professional indemnity insurance that complies with paragraph (a) — the foreign lawyer —

(i)must have professional indemnity insurance that covers the practice of foreign law in this jurisdiction and that complies with the relevant requirements of a foreign law or foreign registration authority; and

(ii)if the insurance is for less than $1.5 million (inclusive of defence costs) — must provide a disclosure statement to each client disclosing the level of cover;

(c)if the foreign lawyer does not have professional indemnity insurance that complies with paragraph (a) or (b) — the foreign lawyer must provide a disclosure statement to each client stating that the lawyer does not have complying professional indemnity insurance.

(2)A disclosure statement must be made in writing before, or as soon as practicable after, the foreign lawyer is retained in the matter.

(3)A disclosure statement provided to a person before the foreign lawyer is retained in a matter is taken to be provided to the person as a client for the purposes of this section.

(4)A disclosure statement is not valid unless it is given in accordance with, and otherwise complies with, any applicable requirements of the regulations.

163.Fidelity cover

The regulations may provide that the provisions of Part 12 apply to classes of Australian‑registered foreign lawyers prescribed by the regulations and so apply with any modifications specified in the regulations.

Division 3 — Local registration of foreign lawyers generally

164.Local registration of foreign lawyers

Overseas‑registered foreign lawyers may be registered as foreign lawyers under this Act.

165.Duration of registration

(1)Registration as a locally registered foreign lawyer granted under this Act is in force from the day specified in the local registration certificate until the end of the financial year in which it is granted, unless the registration is sooner suspended or cancelled.

(2)Registration as a foreign lawyer renewed under this Act is in force until the end of the financial year following its previous period of currency, unless the registration is sooner suspended or cancelled.

(3)If an application for the renewal of registration as a foreign lawyer has not been determined by the following 1 July, the registration —

(a)continues in force on and from that 1 July until the Board renews or refuses to renew the registration or the holder withdraws the application for renewal, unless the registration is sooner suspended or cancelled; and

(b)if renewed, is taken to have been renewed on and from that 1 July.

166.Locally registered foreign lawyer is not officer of Supreme Court

A locally registered foreign lawyer is not an officer of the Supreme Court.

Division 4 — Application for grant or renewal of local registration

167.Application for grant or renewal of registration

An overseas‑registered foreign lawyer may apply to the Board for the grant or renewal of registration as a foreign lawyer under this Act.

168.Manner of application

(1)An application for the grant or renewal of registration as a foreign lawyer must be —

(a)made in the approved form; and

(b)accompanied by the fees determined by the Board.

(2)Different fees may be set according to different factors determined by the Board.

(3)The fees are not to be greater than the maximum fees for a local practising certificate.

(4)The Board may also require the applicant to pay any reasonable costs and expenses incurred by the Board in considering the application, including (for example) costs and expenses of making inquiries and obtaining information or documents about whether the applicant meets the criteria for registration.

(5)The fees and costs must not include any component for compulsory membership of any professional association.

(6)The approved form may require the applicant to disclose —

(a)matters that may affect the Board’s consideration of the application for the grant or renewal of registration; and

(b)particulars of any offences for which the applicant has been convicted in Australia or a foreign country, whether before or after the commencement of this section.

(7)The approved form may indicate that convictions of a particular kind need not be disclosed for the purposes of the current application.

(8)The approved form may indicate that specified kinds of matters or particulars previously disclosed in a particular manner need not be disclosed for the purposes of the current application.

169.Requirements regarding applications for grant or renewal of registration

(1)An application for the grant of registration must state the applicant’s educational and professional qualifications.

(2)An application for the grant or renewal of registration must —

(a)state that the applicant is registered to engage in legal practice by one or more specified foreign registration authorities in one or more foreign countries; and

(b)state that the applicant is not an Australian legal practitioner; and

(c)state that the applicant is not the subject of disciplinary proceedings in Australia or a foreign country (including any preliminary investigations or action that might lead to disciplinary proceedings) in the applicant’s capacity as —

(i)an overseas‑registered foreign lawyer; or

(ii)an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer; or

(iii)an Australian lawyer;

and

(d)state whether the applicant has been convicted of an offence in Australia or a foreign country, and if so —

(i)the nature of the offence; and

(ii)how long ago the offence was committed; and

(iii)the applicant’s age when the offence was committed;

and

(e)state that the applicant’s registration is not cancelled or currently suspended in any place as a result of any disciplinary action in Australia or a foreign country; and

(f)state —

(i)that the applicant is not otherwise personally prohibited from engaging in legal practice in any place or bound by any undertaking not to engage in legal practice in any place; and

(ii)whether or not the applicant is subject to any special conditions in engaging in legal practice in any place,

as a result of criminal, civil or disciplinary proceedings in Australia or a foreign country; and

(g)specify any special conditions imposed in Australia or a foreign country as a restriction on the legal practice engaged in by the applicant or any undertaking given by the applicant restricting the applicant’s practice of law; and

(h)give consent to the making of inquiries of, and the exchange of information with, any foreign registration authorities the Board considers appropriate regarding the applicant’s activities in engaging in legal practice in the places concerned or otherwise regarding matters relevant to the application; and

(i)specify which of the paragraphs of section 162(1) the applicant proposes to rely on and be accompanied by supporting proof of the relevant matters; and

(j)provide the information or be accompanied by other information or documents (or both) that is specified in the application form or in material accompanying the application form as provided by the Board.

(3)The application must (if the Board so requires) be accompanied by an original instrument, or a copy of an original instrument, from each foreign registration authority specified in the application that —

(a)verifies the applicant’s educational and professional qualifications; and

(b)verifies the applicant’s registration by the authority to engage in legal practice in the foreign country concerned, and the date of registration; and

(c)describes anything done by the applicant in engaging in legal practice in that foreign country of which the authority is aware and that, in the opinion of the authority, has had or is likely to have had an adverse effect on the applicant’s professional standing within the legal profession of that place.

(4)The applicant must (if the Board so requires) certify in the application that the accompanying instrument is the original or a complete and accurate copy of the original.

(5)The Board may require the applicant to verify the statements in the application by statutory declaration or by other proof acceptable to the Board.

(6)If the accompanying instrument is not in English, it must be accompanied by a translation in English that is authenticated or certified to the satisfaction of the Board.

Division 5 — Grant or renewal of registration

170.Grant or renewal of registration

(1)The Board must consider an application that has been made for the grant or renewal of registration as a locally registered foreign lawyer and may —

(a)grant or refuse to grant the registration; and

(b)renew or refuse to renew the registration.

(2)The Board may, when granting or renewing registration, impose conditions as referred to in section 189.

(3)If the Board grants or renews the registration, the Board must give the applicant a registration certificate or a notice of renewal.

(4)If the Board —

(a)refuses to grant or renew registration; or

(b)imposes a condition on the registration and the applicant does not agree to the condition,

the Board must, as soon as practicable, give the applicant an information notice.

(5)A notice of renewal may be in the form of a new registration certificate or another form the Board considers appropriate.

171.Requirement to grant or renew registration if criteria satisfied

(1)The Board must grant an application for registration as a foreign lawyer if the Board —

(a)is satisfied the applicant is registered to engage in legal practice in one or more foreign countries and is not an Australian legal practitioner; and

(b)considers an effective system exists for regulating engaging in legal practice in one or more of the foreign countries; and

(c)considers the applicant is not, as a result of criminal, civil or disciplinary proceedings in any of the foreign countries, subject to —

(i)any special conditions in engaging in legal practice in any of the foreign countries; or

(ii)any undertakings concerning engaging in legal practice in any of the foreign countries,

that would make it inappropriate to register the person; and

(d)is satisfied that the applicant demonstrates an intention to commence practising foreign law in this jurisdiction within a reasonable period if registration were to be granted,

unless the Board refuses the application under this Part.

(2)The Board must grant an application for renewal of a person’s registration, unless the Board refuses the renewal under this Part.

(3)Residence or domicile in this jurisdiction is not to be a prerequisite for or a factor in entitlement to the grant or renewal of registration.

172.Refusal to grant or renew registration

(1)The Board may refuse to consider an application for registration as a foreign lawyer if it is not made in accordance with this Act.

(2)The Board may refuse to grant or renew registration if —

(a)the application is not accompanied by, or does not contain, the information required under this Part or prescribed by the regulations; or

(b)the applicant has contravened this Act or a corresponding law; or

(c)the applicant has contravened an order of the Complaints Committee, the State Administrative Tribunal or the Supreme Court exercising jurisdiction under this Act or a corresponding disciplinary body, including but not limited to an order to pay any fine or costs; or

(d)the applicant has contravened an order of a local regulatory authority or interstate regulatory authority to pay any fine or costs; or

(e)the applicant has failed to comply with a requirement under this Act to pay a contribution or levy to the Guarantee Fund; or

(f)the applicant has contravened a requirement under this Act about professional indemnity insurance; or

(g)the applicant has failed to pay any expenses of receivership payable under this Act; or

(h)the applicant’s foreign legal practice is in receivership (however described).

(3)The Board may refuse to grant or renew registration if an authority of another jurisdiction has under a corresponding law —

(a)refused to grant or renew registration for the applicant; or

(b)suspended or cancelled the applicant’s registration.

(4)The Board may refuse to grant registration if the Board is satisfied that the applicant is not a fit and proper person to be registered after considering —

(a)the nature of any offence of which the applicant has been convicted in Australia or a foreign country, whether before or after the commencement of this section; and

(b)how long ago the offence was committed; and

(c)the person’s age when the offence was committed.

(5)The Board may refuse to renew registration if the Board is satisfied that the applicant is not a fit and proper person to continue to be registered after considering —

(a)the nature of any offence of which the applicant has been convicted in Australia or a foreign country, whether before or after the commencement of this section, other than an offence disclosed in a previous application to the Board; and

(b)how long ago the offence was committed; and

(c)the person’s age when the offence was committed.

(6)The Board may refuse to grant or renew registration on any ground on which registration could be suspended or cancelled.

(7)If the Board refuses to grant or renew registration, the Board must, as soon as practicable, give the applicant an information notice.

(8)Nothing in this section affects the operation of Division 7.

Division 6 — Amendment, suspension or cancellation of local registration

173.Application of this Division

This Division does not apply in relation to matters referred to in Division 7.

174.Grounds for amending, suspending or cancelling local registration

(1)Each of the following is a ground for amending, suspending or cancelling a person’s registration as a foreign lawyer —

(a)the registration was obtained because of incorrect or misleading information;

(b)the person contravenes a requirement of this Part;

(c)the person contravenes a condition imposed on the person’s registration;

(d)the person becomes the subject of disciplinary proceedings in Australia or a foreign country (including any preliminary investigations or action that might lead to disciplinary proceedings) in the person’s capacity as —

(i)an overseas‑registered foreign lawyer; or

(ii)an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer; or

(iii)an Australian lawyer;

(e)the person has been convicted of an offence in Australia or a foreign country;

(f)the person’s registration is cancelled or currently suspended in any place as a result of any disciplinary action in Australia or a foreign country;

(g)the person does not meet the requirements of section 162;

(h)another ground the Board considers sufficient.

(2)Subsection (1) does not limit the grounds on which conditions may be imposed on registration as a foreign lawyer under section 189.

175.Amending, suspending or cancelling registration

(1)In this section —

amend, in relation to registration, means amend the registration under section 189 during its currency, otherwise than at the request of the foreign lawyer concerned.

(2)If the Board believes a ground exists to amend, suspend or cancel a person’s registration by it as a foreign lawyer (the action), the Board must give the person a notice that —

(a)states the action proposed and —

(i)if the proposed action is to amend the registration in any way — states the proposed amendment; and

(ii)if the proposed action is to suspend the registration — states the proposed suspension period;

and

(b)states the grounds for proposing to take the action; and

(c)outlines the facts and circumstances that form the basis for the Board’s belief; and

(d)invites the person to make written representations to the Board, within a specified time not less than 7 days and not more than 28 days, as to why the action proposed should not be taken.

(3)If, after considering all written submissions made within the specified time, the Board still believes a ground exists to take the action, the Board may —

(a)if the notice under subsection (2) stated the action proposed was to amend the person’s registration — amend the registration in the way stated, or in another way the Board considers appropriate because of the representations; or

(b)if the notice stated the action proposed was to suspend the registration for a specified period — suspend the registration for a period no longer than the specified period; or

(c)if the notice stated the action proposed was to cancel the registration —

(i)cancel the registration; or

(ii)suspend the registration for a period; or

(iii)amend the registration in a less onerous way the Board considers appropriate because of the representations.

(4)The Board may, in its discretion, consider representations made after the specified time.

(5)If the Board decides to amend, suspend or cancel the registration, the Board must give the person an information notice about the decision.

176.Operation of amendment, suspension or cancellation of registration

(1)This section applies if a decision is made under section 175 to amend, suspend or cancel a person’s registration.

(2)Subject to subsections (3) and (4), the amendment, cancellation or suspension of the person’s registration takes effect on the later of the following —

(a)the day notice of the decision is given to the person;

(b)the day specified in the notice.

(3)If the registration is amended, cancelled or suspended because the person has been convicted of an offence —

(a)the State Administrative Tribunal may, on the application of the person, order that the amendment, cancellation or suspension be stayed until —

(i)the end of the time to appeal against the conviction; or

(ii)if an appeal is made against the conviction — the appeal is finally decided, lapses or otherwise ends;

and

(b)the amendment, cancellation or suspension does not have effect during any period for which the stay is in force.

(4)If the registration is amended, suspended or cancelled because the person has been convicted of an offence and the conviction is quashed —

(a)the amendment or suspension ceases to have effect when the conviction is quashed; or

(b)the cancellation ceases to have effect when the conviction is quashed and the registration is restored as if it had merely been suspended.

177.Other ways of amending or cancelling registration

(1)The Board may —

(a)amend the registration of a locally registered foreign lawyer if the lawyer requests the Board to do so; or

(b)suspend the registration of a locally registered foreign lawyer for a specified period if the lawyer requests the Board to do so or agrees to the Board doing so; or

(c)cancel the registration of a locally registered foreign lawyer if the lawyer requests the Board to do so or surrenders the lawyer’s local registration certificate to the Board.

(2)The Board may amend a locally registered foreign lawyer’s registration —

(a)for a formal or clerical reason; or

(b)in another way that does not adversely affect the lawyer’s interests.

(3)The amendment, suspension or cancellation of registration under this section is effected by written notice given to the lawyer.

(4)Section 175 does not apply in the case of an amendment, suspension or cancellation under this section.

178.Relationship of this Division with Part 13

Nothing in this Division prevents a complaint from being made, or an investigation from being initiated, under Part 13 about a matter to which this Division relates.

Division 7 — Special powers in relation to local registration — show cause events

179.Applicant for local registration — show cause event

(1)This section applies if —

(a)a person is applying for registration as a foreign lawyer under this Act; and

(b)a show cause event in relation to the person happened, whether before or after the commencement of this section, after the person first became an overseas‑registered foreign lawyer.

(2)As part of the application, the person must provide to the Board a written statement, in accordance with the regulations —

(a)about the show cause event; and

(b)explaining why, despite the show cause event, the person considers himself or herself to be a fit and proper person to be a locally registered foreign lawyer.

(3)However, a person need not provide a statement under subsection (2) if the person has previously provided to the Board a statement under this section, or a notice and statement under section 180, explaining why, despite the show cause event, the person considers himself or herself to be a fit and proper person to be a locally registered foreign lawyer.

180.Locally registered foreign lawyer — show cause event

(1)This section applies to a show cause event that happens in relation to a locally registered foreign lawyer.

(2)The locally registered foreign lawyer must provide to the Board both of the following —

(a)within 7 days after the happening of the event — notice, in the approved form, that the event happened;

(b)within 28 days after the happening of the event — a written statement explaining why, despite the show cause event, the person considers himself or herself to be a fit and proper person to be a locally registered foreign lawyer.

(3)If a written statement is provided after the 28 days mentioned in subsection (2)(b), the Board may accept the statement and take it into consideration.

181.Refusal, amendment, suspension or cancellation of local registration — failure to show cause

(1)The Board may refuse to grant or renew, or may amend, suspend or cancel, local registration if the applicant for registration or the locally registered foreign lawyer —

(a)is required under section 179 or 180 to provide a written statement relating to a matter and has failed to provide a written statement in accordance with that requirement; or

(b)has provided a written statement in accordance with section 179 or 180, but the Board does not consider that the applicant or foreign lawyer has shown in the statement that, despite the show cause event concerned, he or she is a fit and proper person to be a locally registered foreign lawyer.

(2)For the purposes of this section only, a written statement accepted by the Board under section 180(3) is taken to have been provided in accordance with section 180.

(3)The Board must give the applicant or foreign lawyer an information notice about the decision to refuse to grant or renew, or to suspend or cancel, the registration.

182.Restriction on making further applications

(1)If the Board determines under this Division to cancel a person’s registration, the Board may also determine that the person is not entitled to apply for registration under this Part for a specified period not exceeding 5 years.

(2)A person in respect of whom a determination has been made under this section, or under a provision of a corresponding law that corresponds to this section, is not entitled to apply for registration under this Part during the period specified in the decision.

(3)If the Board makes a determination under this section, the Board must give the person an information notice about the determination.

183.Relationship of this Division with Part 13

Nothing in this Division prevents a complaint from being made, or an investigation from being initiated, under Part 13 about a matter to which this Division relates.

Division 8 — Further provisions relating to local registration

184.Immediate suspension of registration

(1)This section applies, despite sections 175 and 176, if the Board considers it necessary in the public interest to immediately suspend a person’s registration as a locally registered foreign lawyer.

(2)The Board may, by written notice given to the person, immediately suspend the registration until the earlier of the following —

(a)the time at which the Board informs the person of the Board’s decision by notice under section 175;

(b)the end of the period of 56 days after the notice is given to the person under this section.

(3)The notice under this section must state —

(a)the reasons for the suspension; and

(b)that the person may make written representations to the Board about the suspension; and

(c)the review rights of the person under section 203.

(4)The person may make written representations to the Board about the suspension, and the Board must consider the representations.

(5)The Board may revoke the suspension at any time, whether or not in response to any written representations made to it by the person.

185.Automatic cancellation of registration on grant of practising certificate

A person’s registration as a foreign lawyer under this Part is taken to be cancelled if the person becomes an Australian legal practitioner.

186.Suspension or cancellation of registration not to affect disciplinary processes

The suspension or cancellation of a person’s registration as a foreign lawyer under this Part does not affect any disciplinary processes in respect of matters arising before the suspension or cancellation.

187.Return of local registration certificate on amendment, suspension or cancellation of registration

(1)This section applies if a person’s registration under this Part as a foreign lawyer is amended, suspended or cancelled.

(2)The Board may give the person a notice requiring the person to return the registration certificate to the Board in the way specified in the notice within a specified period of not less than 14 days.

(3)The person must comply with the notice, unless the person has a reasonable excuse.

Penalty: a fine of $2 000.

(4)The Board must return the registration certificate to the person as soon as practicable —

(a)if the certificate is amended — after amending it; or

(b)if the certificate is suspended and is still current at the end of the suspension period — at the end of the suspension period.

Division 9 — Conditions on registration

188.Conditions generally

Registration as a foreign lawyer under this Part is subject to —

(a)any conditions imposed by the Board; and

(b)any conditions imposed under the legal profession rules; and

(c)any conditions imposed under Part 13 or under any provisions of a corresponding law that correspond to Part 13; and

(d)any other conditions imposed by this or any other Act.

189.Conditions imposed by Board

(1)The Board may impose conditions on registration as a foreign lawyer —

(a)when the registration is granted or renewed; or

(b)during the currency of the registration.

(2)A condition imposed under this section must be reasonable and relevant.

(3)A condition imposed under this section may be about any of the following —

(a)any matter in respect of which a condition could be imposed on a local practising certificate;

(b)a matter agreed to by the foreign lawyer.

(4)The Board must not impose a condition under subsection (3)(a) that is more onerous than a condition that it would impose on a local practising certificate of a local legal practitioner in the same or similar circumstances.

(5)The Board may revoke or vary conditions imposed by it under this section.

190.Imposition or variation of conditions pending criminal proceedings

(1)If a person registered as a foreign lawyer under this Part has been charged with an offence but the charge has not been determined, the Board may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for an order under this section.

(2)On application under subsection (1), the State Administrative Tribunal may make either or both of the following orders —

(a)an order varying the conditions on the foreign lawyer’s registration;

(b)an order imposing further conditions on the foreign lawyer’s registration.

(3)The State Administrative Tribunal may make an order under this section only if the Tribunal considers it appropriate to do so, having regard to —

(a)the seriousness of the offence; and

(b)the public interest.

(4)An order under this section has effect until the sooner of —

(a)the end of the period specified by the State Administrative Tribunal;

(b)if the practitioner is convicted of the offence — 28 days after the day of the conviction;

(c)if the charge is dismissed — the day of the dismissal.

(5)The State Administrative Tribunal, on application by any party, may vary or revoke an order under this section at any time.

191.Condition regarding notification of offence

(1)It is a condition of registration as a foreign lawyer that the lawyer —

(a)must notify the Board that the lawyer has been —

(i)convicted of an offence that would have to be disclosed in relation to an application for registration as a foreign lawyer under this Act; or

(ii)charged with a serious offence;

and

(b)must do so within 7 days after the event and by a written notice.

(2)The legal profession rules may specify the form of the notice to be used and the person to whom or the address to which it is to be given.

(3)This section does not apply to an offence to which Division 7 applies.

192.Conditions imposed by legal profession rules

The legal profession rules may —

(a)impose conditions on the registration of foreign lawyers or any class of foreign lawyers; or

(b)authorise conditions to be imposed on the registration of foreign lawyers or on the registration of any class of foreign lawyers.

193.Compliance with conditions

A locally registered foreign lawyer must not contravene a condition to which the registration is subject.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

Division 10 — Interstate‑registered foreign lawyers

194.Extent of entitlement of interstate‑registered foreign lawyer to practise in this jurisdiction

(1)This Part does not authorise an interstate‑registered foreign lawyer to practise foreign law in this jurisdiction to a greater extent than a locally registered foreign lawyer could be authorised under a local registration certificate.

(2)Also, an interstate‑registered foreign lawyer’s right to practise foreign law in this jurisdiction —

(a)is subject to —

(i)any conditions imposed by the Board under section 195 in relation to the lawyer; and

(ii)any conditions imposed under the legal profession rules as referred to in that section;

and

(b)is, to the greatest practicable extent and with all necessary changes —

(i)the same as the interstate‑registered foreign lawyer’s right to practise foreign law in the lawyer’s home jurisdiction; and

(ii)subject to any condition on the interstate‑registered foreign lawyer’s right to practise foreign law in that jurisdiction.

(3)If there is an inconsistency between conditions mentioned in subsection (2)(a) and conditions mentioned in subsection (2)(b), the conditions that are, in the opinion of the Board, more onerous prevail to the extent of the inconsistency.

(4)An interstate‑registered foreign lawyer must not practise foreign law in this jurisdiction in a manner not authorised by this Act or in contravention of any condition referred to in this section.

195.Additional conditions on practice of interstate‑registered foreign lawyers

(1)The Board may, by written notice to an interstate‑registered foreign lawyer practising foreign law in this jurisdiction, impose any condition on the interstate‑registered foreign lawyer’s practice that it may impose under this Act in relation to a locally registered foreign lawyer.

(2)The legal profession rules may impose, or provide for the imposition of, conditions on the registration of an interstate‑registered foreign lawyer.

(3)Conditions imposed under or referred to in this section must not be more onerous than conditions applying to locally registered foreign lawyers in the same or similar circumstances.

(4)A notice under this section must include an information notice about the decision to impose a condition.

(5)An interstate‑registered foreign lawyer may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for review of a decision of the Board to impose a condition on the lawyer’s registration under this section or the legal profession rules.

196.Notification requirements for interstate‑registered foreign lawyers

(1)An interstate‑registered foreign lawyer who establishes an office in this jurisdiction must give written notice to the Board in accordance with this section within 28 days after establishing the office.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(2)The notice must contain —

(a)the lawyer’s name, date of birth and date of registration to engage in legal practice in one or more foreign countries; and

(b)the name of any law practice of which the lawyer is a principal or employee, or any other person or body of which the lawyer is an employee; and

(c)if the lawyer practises on his or her own account, any business names under which the lawyer practises foreign law; and

(d)any condition to which the lawyer is subject in respect of his or her practice of foreign law in the lawyer’s home jurisdiction or elsewhere; and

(e)an address in this jurisdiction for service of notices and other documents on the lawyer; and

(f)a statement as to whether the lawyer has established, or intends to establish, an office in this jurisdiction; and

(g)a statement as to whether the lawyer is entitled to receive trust money, or to withdraw trust money from a trust account; and

(h)the information prescribed by the regulations (if any).

(3)A notice under this section must be accompanied by —

(a)satisfactory evidence, in an approved form, that the interstate‑registered foreign lawyer has professional indemnity insurance as required under this Act; and

(b)the required contribution to the Guarantee Fund under this Act, if any.

(4)If an interstate‑registered foreign lawyer who has indicated that he or she does not intend to establish an office in this jurisdiction subsequently establishes an office in this jurisdiction, the lawyer must give notice to the Board within 14 days.

(5)For the purposes of this section, an interstate‑registered foreign lawyer establishes an office in this jurisdiction when the lawyer first offers or provides legal services to the public in this jurisdiction from an office maintained by the lawyer, or by a principal of a law practice of which the practitioner is an associate, for that purpose in this jurisdiction.

Division 11 — Miscellaneous

197.Consideration and investigation of applicants and locally registered foreign lawyers

(1)To help it consider whether or not to grant, renew, amend, suspend or cancel registration under this Part, the Board may, by notice to the applicant or locally registered foreign lawyer require the applicant or lawyer —

(a)to give the Board specified documents or information; or

(b)to cooperate with any inquiries that the Board considers appropriate.

(2)The Board may require the applicant or locally registered foreign lawyer to verify documents or information by statutory declaration or in another manner specified by the Board.

(3)A failure to comply with a notice under subsection (1) by the date specified in the notice and in the way required by the notice is a ground for making an adverse decision in relation to the action being considered by the Board.

198.Register of locally registered foreign lawyers

(1)The Board must keep a register of the names of locally registered foreign lawyers.

(2)The register must —

(a)state the conditions (if any) imposed on a foreign lawyer’s registration; and

(b)include other particulars prescribed by the regulations.

(3)The register may be kept in the way the Board decides.

(4)The register must be available for inspection, without charge, at the Board’s principal place of business during normal business hours.

199.Publication of information about locally registered foreign lawyers

The Board may publish, in circumstances that it considers appropriate, the names of persons registered by it as foreign lawyers under this Part and any relevant particulars concerning those persons.

200.SAT orders about conditions

The Board may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for an order that an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer not contravene a condition imposed under this Part.

201.Exemption by Board

(1)The Board may exempt an Australian‑registered foreign lawyer or class of Australian‑registered foreign lawyers from compliance with a specified provision of this Act or the regulations, or from compliance with a specified rule or part of a rule, that would otherwise apply to the foreign lawyer or class of foreign lawyers.

(2)An exemption may be granted unconditionally or subject to conditions specified in writing.

(3)The Board may revoke or vary any conditions imposed under this section or impose new conditions.

202.Membership of professional association

An Australian‑registered foreign lawyer is not required to join (but may, if eligible, join) any professional association.

203.Review by SAT

A foreign lawyer may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for review of a decision by the Board —

(a)to refuse to grant or renew registration under section 170, 172 or 181; or

(b)to impose a condition on registration under section 189; or

(c)to amend, suspend or cancel registration under section 175 or 181; or

(d)to suspend registration under section 184; or

(e)to impose a period under section 182 during which the lawyer is not entitled to apply for registration.

Part 9 — Trust money and trust accounts

Division 1 — Preliminary

204.Purposes

The purposes of this Part are as follows —

(a)to ensure trust money is held by law practices in a way that protects the interests of person for or on whose behalf money is held, both inside and outside this jurisdiction;

(b)to minimise compliance requirement for law practices that provide legal services within and outside this jurisdiction;

(c)to ensure the Board can work effectively with corresponding authorities in other jurisdictions in relation to the regulation of trust money and trust accounts.

205.Terms used

(1)In this Part —

controlled money means money received or held by a law practice in respect of which the practice has a written direction to deposit the money in an account (other than a general trust account) over which the practice has or will have exclusive control;

controlled money account means an account maintained by a law practice with an ADI for the holding of controlled money received by the practice;

general trust account means an account maintained in this jurisdiction by a law practice with an ADI for the holding of trust money received by the practice, other than controlled money or transit money;

investigation means an investigation under Division 3 of the affairs of a law practice;

investigator means a person holding an appointment as an investigator under Division 3;

transit money means money received by a law practice subject to instructions to pay or deliver it to a third party, other than an associate of the practice;

trust account means an account maintained by a law practice with an ADI to hold trust money;

trust money means money entrusted to the law practice in the course of or in connection with the provision of legal services by the practice, and includes —

(a)money received by the practice on account of legal costs in advance of providing the services; and

(b)controlled money received by the practice; and

(c)transit money received by the practice; and

(d)money received by the practice that is the subject of a power, exercisable by the practice or an associate of the practice, to deal with the money for or on behalf of another person;

trust records includes the following —

(a)receipts;

(b)cheque butts or cheque requisitions;

(c)records of authorities to withdraw by electronic funds transfer;

(d)deposit records (including deposit slips and duplicate deposit slips);

(e)trust account ADI statements;

(f)trust account receipts and payments cash books;

(g)trust ledger accounts;

(h)records of monthly trial balances;

(i)records of monthly reconciliations;

(j)trust transfer journals;

(k)statements of account as required to be furnished under the regulations;

(l)registers required to be kept under the regulations;

(m)monthly statements required to be kept under the regulations;

(n)files relating to trust transactions or bills of costs or both;

(o)written directions, authorities or other documents required to be kept under this Act;

(p)supporting information required to be kept under the regulations in relation to powers to deal with trust money.

(2)A reference in this Part to a law practice’s trust account or trust records includes a reference to an associate’s trust account or trust records.

(3)A reference in this Part to a power given to a law practice or an associate of the practice to deal with money for or on behalf of another person is a reference to a power given to the practice or associate that is exercisable by —

(a)the practice alone; or

(b)an associate of the practice alone (otherwise than in a private or personal capacity); or

(c)the practice or an associate of the practice jointly or severally, or jointly and severally, with either or both of the following —

(i)one or more associates of the practice;

(ii)the person or one or more nominees of the person, for whom or on whose behalf the money may or is to be dealt with under the power.

206.Money involved in financial services or investments

(1)Money that is entrusted to or held by a law practice for or in connection with —

(a)a financial service provided by the practice or an associate of the practice in circumstances where the practice or associate is required to hold an Australian financial services licence covering the provision of the service (whether or not such a licence is held at any relevant time); or

(b)a financial service provided by the practice or an associate of the practice in circumstances where the practice or associate provides the service as a representative of another person who carries on a financial services business (whether or not the practice or associate is an authorised representative at any relevant time),

is not trust money for the purposes of this Act.

(2)Without limiting subsection (1), money that is entrusted to or held by a law practice for or in connection with a managed investment scheme, or mortgage financing, undertaken by the practice is not trust money for the purposes of this Act.

(3)Without limiting subsections (1) and (2), money that is entrusted to or held by a law practice for investment purposes, whether on its own account or as agent, is not trust money for the purposes of this Act, unless —

(a)the money was entrusted to or held by the practice —

(i)in the ordinary course of legal practice; and

(ii)primarily in connection with the provision of legal services to or at the direction of the client;

and

(b)the investment is or is to be made —

(i)in the ordinary course of legal practice; and

(ii)for the ancillary purpose of maintaining or enhancing the value of the money pending completion of the matter or further stages of the matter or pending payment or delivery of the money to or at the direction of the client.

(4)In this section —

Australian financial services licence, authorised representative, financial service and financial services business have the meanings given in the Corporations Act Chapter 7.

207.Determinations about status of money

(1)This section applies to money received by a law practice if the Board considers that there is doubt or a dispute as to whether the money is trust money.

(2)The Board may determine that money is or is not trust money.

(3)The Board may revoke or modify a determination under this section.

(4)While a determination under this section is in force that money is trust money, the money is taken to be trust money for the purposes of this Act.

(5)While a determination under this section is in force that money is not trust money, the money is taken not to be trust money for the purposes of this Act.

(6)This section has effect subject to a decision of a court or the State Administrative Tribunal made in relation to the money concerned.

208.Application of Part to law practices and trust money

(1)This Part applies to the following law practices in respect of trust money received by them in this jurisdiction —

(a)a law practice that has an office in this jurisdiction, whether or not the practice has an office in another jurisdiction;

(b)a law practice that does not have an office in any jurisdiction at all.

(2)This Part applies to the following law practices in respect of trust money received by them in another jurisdiction —

(a)a law practice that has an office in this jurisdiction and in no other jurisdiction;

(b)a law practice that has an office in this jurisdiction and in one or more other jurisdictions but not in the jurisdiction in which the trust money was received, unless the money is dealt with in accordance with the corresponding law of another jurisdiction.

(3)However, this Part does not apply to —

(a)prescribed law practices or classes of law practices; or

(b)prescribed law practices or classes of law practices in prescribed circumstances; or

(c)prescribed kinds of trust money; or

(d)prescribed kinds of trust money in prescribed circumstances.

(4)A reference in this section to having an office in a jurisdiction is a reference to having, or engaging in legal practice from, an office or business address in the jurisdiction.

209.Trust money protocols

(1)The Board may enter into arrangements (trust money protocols) with corresponding authorities about any or all of the following —

(a)determining the jurisdiction where a law practice receives trust money;

(b)sharing information about whether, and (if so) how, trust money is being dealt with under this Act or a corresponding law.

(2)For the purposes of this Act, to the extent that a trust money protocol is relevant, the jurisdiction where a law practice receives trust money is to be determined in accordance with the protocols.

(3)The Board may enter into arrangements that amend, revoke or replace a trust money protocol.

(4)A trust money protocol does not have effect in this jurisdiction unless it is embodied or identified in the regulations.

210.When money is received

(1)For the purposes of this Act, a law practice receives money when —

(a)the practice obtains possession or control of it directly; or

(b)the practice obtains possession or control of it indirectly as a result of its delivery to an associate of the practice; or

(c)the practice, or an associate of the practice (otherwise than in a private and personal capacity), is given a power to deal with the money for or on behalf of another person.

(2)For the purposes of this Act, a law practice or associate is taken to have received money if the money is available to the practice or associate by means of an instrument or other way of authorising an ADI to credit or debit an amount to an account with the ADI, including, for example, an electronic funds transfer, credit card transaction or telegraphic transfer.

211.Discharge by legal practitioner associate of obligations of law practice

(1)The following actions, if taken by a legal practitioner associate of a law practice on behalf of the practice in relation to trust money received by the practice, discharge the corresponding obligations of the practice in relation to the money —

(a)the establishment of a trust account;

(b)the maintenance of a trust account;

(c)the payment of trust money into and out of a trust account and other dealings with trust money;

(d)the maintenance of trust records;

(e)engaging an external examiner to examine trust records;

(f)an action of a kind prescribed by the regulations.

(2)If the legal practitioner associate maintains a trust account in relation to trust money received by the law practice, the provisions of this Part and the regulations made for the purposes of this Part apply to the associate in the same way as they apply to a law practice.

(3)Subsection (1) does not apply to the extent that the associate is prevented by the regulations from taking any action referred to in that subsection.

212.Liability of principals of law practices

(1)A provision of this Part or the regulations made for the purposes of this Part expressed as imposing an obligation on a law practice imposes the same obligation on the principals of the law practice jointly and severally, but discharge of the practice’s obligation also discharges the corresponding obligation imposed on the principals.

(2)References in this Part and the regulations made for the purposes of this Part to a law practice include references to the principals of the law practice.

213.Former practices, principals and associates

This Part applies in relation to former law practices and former principals and associates of law practices in relation to conduct occurring while they were respectively law practices, principals and associates in the same way as it applies to law practices, principals and associates, and so applies with any necessary modifications.

Division 2 — Trust accounts and trust money

214.Maintenance of general trust account

(1)A law practice that receives trust money to which this Part applies must maintain a general trust account in this jurisdiction.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)A law practice that is required to maintain a general trust account in this jurisdiction must establish and maintain the account in accordance with the regulations.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(3)Subsection (1) does not apply to a law practice in respect of any period during which the practice receives or holds only either or both of the following —

(a)controlled money;

(b)transit money received in a form other than cash.

(4)Subject to the requirements of the regulations, a requirement of this section for a law practice to maintain, or establish and maintain, a general trust account in this jurisdiction does not prevent the practice from maintaining, or establishing and maintaining, more than one general trust account in this jurisdiction, whether during the same period or during different periods.

(5)Without limiting the other provisions of this section, the regulations may provide that a law practice must not close a general trust account except as permitted by the regulations, either generally or in any prescribed circumstances.

215.Certain trust money to be deposited in general trust account

(1)In this section —

appropriate person, in relation to trust money, means a person legally entitled to give the law practice concerned directions in respect of dealings with the trust money.

(2)Subject to section 222, as soon as practicable after receiving trust money, a law practice must deposit the money in a general trust account of the practice unless —

(a)the practice has a written direction by an appropriate person to deal with it otherwise than by depositing it in the account; or

(b)the money is controlled money; or

(c)the money is transit money; or

(d)the money is the subject of a power given to the practice or an associate of the practice to deal with the money for or on behalf of another person.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(3)Subject to section 222, a law practice that has received money that is the subject of a written direction mentioned in subsection (2)(a) must deal with the money in accordance with the direction —

(a)within the period (if any) specified in the direction; or

(b)subject to paragraph (a), as soon as practicable after it is received.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(4)The law practice must keep a written direction mentioned in subsection (2)(a) for the period prescribed by the regulations.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

216.Holding, disbursing and accounting for trust money

(1)A law practice must —

(a)hold trust money deposited in a general trust account of the practice exclusively for the person on whose behalf it is received; and

(b)disburse the trust money only in accordance with a direction given by the person.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(2)Subsection (1) applies subject to an order of a court of competent jurisdiction or as authorised by law.

(3)The law practice must account for the trust money as required by the regulations.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

217.Manner of withdrawal of trust money from general trust account

(1)A law practice must not withdraw trust money from a general trust account otherwise than by cheque or electronic funds transfer.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)Without limiting subsection (1), the following are specifically prohibited —

(a)cash withdrawals;

(b)ATM withdrawals or transfers;

(c)telephone banking withdrawals or transfers.

(3)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to withdrawals by cheque or electronic funds transfer.

(4)This section has effect despite anything to the contrary in any directions given to the law practice concerned, even if the directions are given by a person who is otherwise legally entitled to give the law practice directions in respect of dealings with trust money.

218.Controlled money

(1)As soon as practicable after receiving controlled money, a law practice must deposit the money in the account specified in the written direction relating to the money.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)The law practice must hold controlled money deposited in a controlled money account in accordance with subsection (1) exclusively for the person on whose behalf it was received.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(3)The law practice that holds controlled money deposited in a controlled money account in accordance with subsection (1) must not disburse the money except in accordance with —

(a)the written direction mentioned in that subsection; or

(b)a later written direction given by or on behalf of the person on whose behalf the money was received.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(4)The law practice must maintain the controlled money account, and account for the controlled money, as required by the regulations.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(5)The law practice must keep a written direction mentioned in this section for the period prescribed by the regulations.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(6)The law practice must ensure that the controlled money account is used for the deposit of controlled money received on behalf of the person referred to in subsection (2), and not for the deposit of controlled money received on behalf of any other person, except to the extent that the regulations otherwise permit.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(7)Subsection (3) applies subject to an order of a court of competent jurisdiction or as authorised by law.

219.Manner of withdrawal of controlled money from controlled money account

(1)A law practice must not withdraw controlled money from a controlled money account otherwise than by cheque or electronic funds transfer.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)Without limiting subsection (1), the following are specifically prohibited —

(a)cash withdrawals;

(b)ATM withdrawals or transfers;

(c)telephone banking withdrawals or transfers.

(3)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to withdrawals by cheque or electronic funds transfer.

(4)This section has effect despite anything to the contrary in any directions given to the law practice concerned, even if the directions are given by a person who is otherwise legally entitled to give the law practice directions in respect of dealings with the controlled money.

220.Transit money

(1)Subject to section 222, a law practice that has received transit money must pay or deliver the money as required by the instructions relating to the money —

(a)within the period (if any) specified in the instructions; or

(b)subject to paragraph (a), as soon as practicable after it is received.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)The law practice must account for the money as required by the regulations.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

221.Trust money subject to specific powers

(1)Subject to section 222, a law practice must ensure that trust money that is the subject of a power given to the practice or an associate of the practice is dealt with by the practice or associate only in accordance with the power relating to the money.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)The law practice must account for the money in the way prescribed by the regulations.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

222.Trust money received in form of cash

(1)In this section —

appropriate person, in relation to trust money, means a person who is legally entitled to give the law practice concerned directions in respect of dealings with the trust money;

general trust money means trust money, other than —

(a)controlled money; and

(b)transit money; and

(c)money that is the subject of a power.

(2)A law practice must deposit general trust money received in the form of cash in a general trust account of the practice.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(3)If the law practice has a written direction by an appropriate person to deal with general trust money received in the form of cash otherwise than by first depositing it in a general trust account of the practice —

(a)the money must nevertheless be deposited in a general trust account of the practice in accordance with subsection (2); and

(b)the money is thereafter to be dealt with in accordance with any applicable terms of the direction so far as those terms are not inconsistent with paragraph (a).

(4)Controlled money received in the form of cash must be deposited in a controlled money account in accordance with section 218.

(5)A law practice must deposit transit money received in the form of cash in a general trust account of the practice before the money is otherwise dealt with in accordance with the instructions relating to the money.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(6)A law practice must deposit trust money that is received in the form of cash and is the subject of a power in a general trust account (or a controlled money account in the case of controlled money) of the practice before the money is otherwise dealt with in accordance with the power.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(7)This section has effect despite anything to the contrary in any relevant direction, instruction or power.

223.Protection of trust money

(1)Money standing to the credit of a trust account maintained by a law practice is not available for the payment of debts of the practice or any of its associates.

(2)Money standing to the credit of a trust account maintained by a law practice is not liable to be attached or taken in execution for satisfying a judgment against the practice or any of its associates.

(3)This section does not apply to money to which a law practice or associate is entitled.

224.Intermixing money

(1)A law practice must not, otherwise than as permitted by subsection (2), mix trust money with other money.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)A law practice is permitted to mix trust money with other money to the extent only that is authorised by the Board and in accordance with any conditions imposed by the Board in relation to the authorisation.

225.Dealing with trust money: legal costs and unclaimed money

(1)A law practice may do any of the following, in relation to trust money held in a general trust account or controlled money account of the practice for a person —

(a)exercise a lien, including a general retaining lien, for the amount of legal costs reasonably due and owing by the person to the practice;

(b)withdraw money for payment to the practice’s account for legal costs owing to the practice if the relevant procedures or requirements prescribed under this Act are complied with;

(c)after deducting any legal costs properly owing to the practice, deal with the balance as unclaimed money under the Unclaimed Money Act 1990.

(2)Subsection (1) applies despite any other provision of this Part (other than subsection (3)) but has effect subject to Part 10.

(3)Subsection (1) does not apply in relation to trust money that is held by the person under another trust when it is paid into the general trust account or controlled money account.

226.Deficiency in trust account

(1)An Australian legal practitioner commits an offence if the practitioner, without reasonable excuse, causes —

(a)a deficiency in any trust account or trust ledger account; or

(b)a failure to pay or deliver any trust money.

Penalty: a fine of $25 000.

(2)A reference in subsection (1) to an account includes a reference to an account of the practitioner or of the practice of which the practitioner is an associate.

(3)In subsection (1) —

cause includes to be responsible for;

deficiency in a trust account or trust ledger account includes the non‑inclusion or exclusion of the whole or any part of an amount that is required to be included in the account.

227.Reporting certain irregularities and suspected irregularities

(1)As soon as practicable after a legal practitioner associate of a law practice becomes aware that there is an irregularity in any of the practice’s trust accounts or trust ledger accounts, the associate must give written notice of the irregularity to —

(a)the Board; and

(b)if a corresponding authority is responsible for the regulation of the accounts concerned — the corresponding authority.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(2)If an Australian legal practitioner believes on reasonable grounds that there is an irregularity in connection with the receipt, recording or disbursement of any trust money received by a law practice of which the practitioner is not a legal practitioner associate, the practitioner must, as soon as practicable after forming the belief, give written notice of it to —

(a)the Board; and

(b)if a corresponding authority is responsible for the regulation of the accounts relating to the trust money concerned — the corresponding authority.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(3)The validity of a requirement imposed on an Australian legal practitioner under subsection (1) or (2) is not affected, and the practitioner is not excused from complying with subsection (1) or (2), on the ground that giving the notice may tend to incriminate the practitioner.

(4)An Australian legal practitioner is not liable for any loss or damage suffered by another person as a result of the practitioner’s compliance with subsection (1) or (2).

228.Keeping trust records

(1)A law practice must keep, in the form of a permanent record, trust records in relation to trust money received by the practice.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(2)In subsection (1) —

permanent record, in relation to a trust record, means printed or, on request, capable of being printed, in English on paper or other material.

(3)The law practice must keep the trust records —

(a)in accordance with the regulations; and

(b)in a way that at all times discloses the true position in relation to trust money received for or on behalf of any person; and

(c)in a way that enables the trust records to be conveniently and properly investigated or externally examined; and

(d)for a period determined in accordance with the regulations.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

229.False names

(1)A law practice must not knowingly receive money or record receipt of money in the practice’s trust records under a false name.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)If a person on whose behalf trust money is received by a law practice is commonly known by more than one name, the practice must ensure that the practice’s trust records record all names by which the person is known.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

Division 3 — Investigations

230.Appointment of investigators

(1)The Board, on its own initiative or at the request of the Trust, or the Complaints Committee may, in writing, appoint a suitably qualified person to investigate the affairs or specified affairs of a law practice.

(2)The appointment may be made generally or for the law practice specified in the instrument of appointment.

(3)The Board must notify the Complaints Committee, and the Complaints Committee must notify the Board, when an investigator it has appointed is investigating the affairs of a law practice.

231.Investigations

(1)The instrument of appointment may authorise the investigator to conduct either or both of the following —

(a)routine investigations on a regular or other basis;

(b)investigations in relation to particular allegations or suspicions regarding trust money, trust property, trust accounts or any other aspect of the affairs of the law practice.

(2)The principal purposes of an investigation are to ascertain whether the law practice has complied with or is complying with the requirements of this Part and to detect and prevent fraud and defaults (as defined in section 334), but this subsection does not limit the scope of the investigation or the powers of the investigator.

232.Application of Part 15

Part 15 applies to an investigation under this Division.

233.Investigator’s report and confidentiality

(1)As soon as practicable after completing the investigation, the investigator must give a written report of the investigation to the Board or the Complaints Committee, whichever appointed the investigator.

(2)The investigator must not disclose information included in the report or acquired in carrying out the investigation except —

(a)to the practice that or person who is the subject of the investigation or report; or

(b)as is necessary for properly conducting the investigation and making the report of the investigation; or

(c)as provided in section 533.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

234.When costs of investigation are debt

(1)If —

(a)an investigator states in his or her report of an investigation that there is evidence that a breach of this Act has been committed or evidence that a default (as defined in section 334) has occurred in relation to the law practice whose affairs are under investigation; and

(b)the Board is satisfied that the breach or default is wilful or of a substantial nature,

the Board may decide that the whole or part of the costs of carrying out the investigation is payable to the Board and may specify the amount payable.

(2)The amount specified by the Board is a debt owing to the Board by the law practice whose affairs are under investigation.

(3)If an investigator is appointed under this Part at the request of the Trust, the Board may require the Trust to pay part or all of the costs of carrying out the investigation and the Trust must comply with that requirement.

Division 4 — External examinations

235.Designation of external examiners

(1)The Board may, in writing, designate an accountant (a designated accountant) as being eligible to be appointed as an external examiner.

(2)Only an accountant who is —

(a)a registered company auditor; or

(b)an employee or agent of the Board,

may be designated under subsection (1).

(3)Only designated accountants may be appointed as external examiners.

(4)The Board may revoke an accountant’s designation under this section.

236.Designation and appointment of associates as external examiners

(1)The Board may designate an associate of a law practice under section 235 only if the Board is satisfied that it is appropriate to do so.

(2)However, an associate of a law practice cannot be appointed as an external examiner under this Division to examine the practice’s trust records.

237.Trust records to be externally examined

(1)A law practice must at least once in each financial year have its trust records externally examined by an external examiner appointed in accordance with the regulations.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)The Board may appoint an external examiner to examine a law practice’s trust records if the Board is not satisfied —

(a)that the practice has had its trust records externally examined as required by this section; or

(b)that an external examination of the practice’s trust records has been carried out in accordance with the regulations.

(3)Without affecting the generality of section 250, this section has effect subject to any exemptions provided by or given under the regulations from the requirement to have trust records examined as otherwise required by this section.

238.Examination of affairs in connection with examination of trust records

(1)An external examiner appointed to examine a law practice’s trust records may examine the affairs of the practice for the purposes of and in connection with an examination of the trust records.

(2)If the law practice is an incorporated legal practice or multi‑disciplinary partnership, the reference in subsection (1) to the affairs of the law practice extends to the affairs of the incorporated legal practice or multi‑disciplinary partnership or of an associate, so far as they are relevant to trust money, trust records and associated matters.

(3)A reference in this Division to trust records includes a reference to the affairs of a law practice that may be examined under this section for the purposes of and in connection with an examination of the practice’s trust records.

239.Final examination of trust records

(1)This section applies if a law practice —

(a)ceases to be authorised to receive trust money; or

(b)ceases to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction.

(2)The law practice must appoint an external examiner to examine the practice’s trust records —

(a)in respect of the period since an external examination was last conducted; and

(b)in respect of each period thereafter, comprising a completed period of 12 months or any remaining partly completed period, during which the practice continued to hold trust money.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(3)The law practice must lodge with the Board —

(a)a report of each examination under subsection (2) within 60 days after the end of the period to which the examination relates; and

(b)a statutory declaration in the prescribed form within 60 days of ceasing to hold trust money.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(4)If any Australian legal practitioner dies, the practitioner’s legal personal representative must comply with this section as if the representative were the practitioner.

(5)Nothing in this section affects any other requirements under this Part.

240.Carrying out examination

(1)Part 15 applies to an external examination.

(2)Subject to Part 15, an external examination of trust records must be carried out in accordance with the regulations.

(3)Without limiting subsection (2), the regulations may provide for the following —

(a)the standards to be adopted and the procedures to be followed by external examiners;

(b)the form and content of an external examiner’s report on an external examination.

241.External examiner’s report and confidentiality

(1)As soon as practicable after completing an external examination, an external examiner must give a written report of the examination to the Board.

(2)The examiner must not disclose information included in the report or acquired in carrying out the examination except —

(a)to the law practice concerned or an associate of the law practice; or

(b)as is necessary for properly conducting the examination and making the report of the examination; or

(c)as provided in section 533.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

242.Law practice liable for costs of examination

(1)A law practice whose trust accounts have been externally examined must pay the costs of the examination.

(2)If the Board appointed the external examiner to carry out the examination, the Board may specify the amount payable as the costs of the examination, and the specified amount is a debt payable to it by the law practice.

Division 5 — Provisions relating to ADIs

243.ADI not subject to certain obligations and liabilities

(1)An ADI at which a trust account is maintained by a law practice —

(a)is not under any obligation to control or supervise transactions in relation to the account or to see to the application of money disbursed from the account; and

(b)does not have, in relation to any liability of the law practice to the ADI, any recourse or right (whether by way of set‑off counterclaim, charge or otherwise) against money in the account.

(2)Subsection (1) does not relieve an ADI from any liability to which it is subject apart from this Act.

244.Reports, records and information

(1)An ADI at which a trust account is maintained must report any deficiency in the account to the Board as soon as practicable after becoming aware of the deficiency.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(2)An ADI at which a trust account is maintained must report a suspected offence in relation to the trust account to the Board as soon as practicable after forming the suspicion.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(3)An ADI must furnish to the Board reports about trust accounts in accordance with the regulations.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(4)An ADI at which a trust account is maintained must without charge —

(a)produce for inspection or copying by an investigator or external examiner any records relating to the trust account or trust money deposited in the trust account; and

(b)provide the investigator or external examiner with full details of any transactions relating to the trust account or trust money,

on demand by the investigator or external examiner and on production to the ADI of evidence of the appointment of the investigator or the external examiner in relation to the law practice concerned.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(5)Subsections (1) to (4) apply despite any legislation or duty of confidence to the contrary.

(6)An ADI or an officer or employee of an ADI is not liable to any action for any loss or damage suffered by another person as a result of —

(a)reporting a deficiency in accordance with subsection (1); or

(b)making or furnishing a report in accordance with subsection (2) or (3); or

(c)producing records or providing details in accordance with subsection (4).

Division 6 — Miscellaneous

245.Restrictions on receipt of trust money

(1)A law practice (other than an incorporated legal practice) must not receive trust money unless a principal holds an Australian practising certificate authorising the receipt of trust money.

Penalty: a fine of $25 000.

(2)An incorporated legal practice must not receive trust money unless —

(a)at least one legal practitioner director of the practice holds an Australian practising certificate authorising the receipt of trust money; or

(b)a person is holding an appointment under section 107 in relation to the practice and the person holds an Australian practising certificate authorising the receipt of trust money; or

(c)the money is received during any period during which the practice —

(i)does not have any legal practitioner directors; and

(ii)is not in default of director requirements under section 107,

so long as there was, immediately before the start of that period, at least one legal practitioner director of the practice who held an Australian practising certificate authorising the receipt of trust money.

Penalty: a fine of $25 000.

246.Restrictions on receipt of trust money by interstate legal practitioners

An interstate legal practitioner must not receive trust money in this jurisdiction unless the practitioner —

(a)is authorised to receive trust money in the practitioner’s home jurisdiction; and

(b)has paid the required contributions (if any) to the Guarantee Fund under this Act.

247.Application of Part to incorporated legal practices and multi‑disciplinary partnerships

(1)The obligations imposed on law practices by this Part, and any other provisions of this Act relating to trust money and trust accounts, apply to an incorporated legal practice or multi‑disciplinary partnership only in connection with legal services provided by the practice or partnership.

(2)The regulations may provide that specified provisions of this Part, and any other provisions of this Act relating to trust money and trust accounts, do not apply to incorporated legal practices or multi‑disciplinary partnerships or both or apply to them with specified modifications.

248.Disclosure to clients — money not received or held as trust money

(1)In this section —

non‑trust money means money that is not trust money for the purposes of this Act because of section 206 or because of a determination under section 207.

(2)When money entrusted to a law practice is or becomes non‑trust money, the practice must, in accordance with this section and the regulations, notify the person who entrusted the money to the practice that —

(a)the money is not treated as trust money for the purposes of this Act and is not subject to any supervision, investigation or audit requirements of this Act; and

(b)a claim against the Guarantee Fund cannot be made in respect of the money.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(3)The notification must be given, in writing, to the person at the time —

(a)if the money was non‑trust money when it was entrusted to the law practice — when the money is entrusted to the practice; or

(b)if the money was trust money when it was entrusted to the practice but becomes non‑trust money because of a determination under section 207 — as soon as practicable after the determination is made.

(4)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the form and manner in which notification required by this section is to be given and the contents of the notification.

249.Disclosure of accounts used to hold money entrusted to law practice or legal practitioner associate

(1)A law practice must in accordance with the regulations notify the Board of the details required by the regulations of each account maintained at any ADI in which the practice or any legal practitioner associate of the practice holds money entrusted to the practice or legal practitioner associate.

Penalty: a fine of $5 000.

(2)Subsection (1) applies whether or not the money is trust money and whether or not section 206 or 207 applies to the money.

250.Regulations

(1)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to any matter to which this Part relates, including for or with respect to —

(a)the establishment, maintenance and closure of general trust accounts and controlled money accounts; and

(b)the manner of receiving, depositing, withdrawing, making records about and otherwise dealing with and accounting for trust money; and

(c)without limiting paragraph (a) or (b) —

(i)the keeping and reconciliation of trust records; and

(ii)the establishment and keeping of trust ledger accounts; and

(iii)the establishment and keeping of records about controlled money and transit money; and

(iv)the establishment and keeping of registers of powers and estates where trust money is involved; and

(v)the recording of information about the investment of trust money; and

(vi)the furnishing of statements regarding trust money;

and

(d)the notification to the Board of information relating directly or indirectly to matters to which this Part relates, including information about —

(i)trust accounts, trust money and trust records; and

(ii)the proposed or actual termination of a law practice that holds trust money; and

(iii)the proposed or actual termination of engaging in legal practice in this jurisdiction by a law practice that holds trust money; and

(iv)the proposed or actual restructuring of the business of a law practice so that it no longer holds or no longer will hold trust money;

and

(e)the creation and exercise of liens over trust money; and

(f)providing exemptions, or providing for the giving of exemptions, from all or any specified requirements of this Part.

Part 10 — Costs disclosure and assessment

Division 1 — Preliminary

251.Purposes

The purposes of this Part are as follows —

(a)to provide for law practices to make disclosures to clients regarding legal costs;

(b)to regulate the making of costs agreements in respect of legal services, including conditional costs agreements;

(c)to regulate the billing of costs for legal services;

(d)to provide a mechanism for the assessment of legal costs and the setting aside of certain costs agreements.

252.Terms used

In this Part —

bill means a bill of costs for providing legal services;

business day means a day other than a Saturday, a Sunday or a public holiday;

conditional costs agreement means a costs agreement that provides that the payment of some or all of the legal costs is conditional on the successful outcome of the matter to which those costs relate, as referred to in section 283, but does not include a costs agreement to the extent to which section 285(1) applies;

costs agreement means an agreement about the payment of legal costs;

costs assessment means an assessment of legal costs under Division 8;

costs determination means a legal costs determination made under section 275;

disbursements includes outlays;

itemised bill means a bill that specifies in detail how the legal costs are made up in a way that would allow them to be assessed under Division 8;

Legal Costs Committee means the Legal Costs Committee established under section 310;

litigious matter means a matter that involves, or is likely to involve, the issue of proceedings in a court or tribunal;

lump sum bill means a bill that describes the legal services to which it relates and specifies the total amount of the legal costs;

sophisticated client means a client to whom because of section 263(2)(c) or (d), disclosure under section 260 or 261(1) is or was not required;

third party payer has the meaning given in section 253;

uplift fee means additional legal costs (excluding disbursements) payable under a costs agreement on the successful outcome of the matter to which the agreement relates.

253.Terms relating to third party payers

(1)For the purposes of this Part —

(a)a person is a third party payer, in relation to a client of a law practice, if the person is not the client and —

(i)is under a legal obligation to pay all or any part of the legal costs for legal services provided to the client; or

(ii)being under that obligation, has already paid all or a part of those legal costs;

and

(b)a third party payer is an associated third party payer if the legal obligation referred to in paragraph (a) is owed to the law practice, whether or not it is also owed to the client or another person; and

(c)a third party payer is a non‑associated third party payer if the legal obligation referred to in paragraph (a) is owed to the client or another person but not to the law practice.

(2)The legal obligation referred to in subsection (1) can arise by or under contract or legislation or otherwise.

(3)A law practice that retains another law practice on behalf of a client is not on that account a third party payer in relation to that client.

Division 2 — Application of this Part

254.Application of Part — first instructions rule

This Part applies to a matter if the client first instructs the law practice in relation to the matter in this jurisdiction.

255.Part also applies by agreement or at client’s election

(1)This Part applies to a matter if —

(a)either —

(i)this Part does not currently apply to the matter; or

(ii)it is not possible to determine the jurisdiction in which the client first instructs the law practice in relation to the matter;

and

(b)either —

(i)the legal services are or will be provided wholly or primarily in this jurisdiction; or

(ii)the matter has a substantial connection with this jurisdiction,

or both; and

(c)either —

(i)the client accepts, in writing or by other conduct, a written offer to enter into an agreement under subsection (2)(a) in respect of the matter; or

(ii)the client gives a notification under subsection (2)(b) in respect of the matter.

(2)For the purposes of subsection (1)(c), the client may —

(a)accept, in writing or by other conduct, a written offer that complies with subsection (3) to enter into an agreement with the law practice that this Part is to apply to the matter; or

(b)notify the law practice in writing that the client requires this Part to apply to the matter.

(3)An offer referred to in subsection (2)(a) must clearly state —

(a)that it is an offer to enter into an agreement that this Part is to apply to the matter; and

(b)that the client may accept it in writing or by other conduct; and

(c)the type of conduct that will constitute acceptance.

(4)A notification has no effect for the purposes of subsection (2)(b) if it is given after the period of 28 days after the law practice discloses to the client (under a corresponding law) information about the client’s right to make a notification of that kind, but nothing in this subsection prevents an agreement referred to in subsection (2)(a) from coming into effect at any time.

256.Displacement of Part

(1)This section applies if this Part applies to a matter by the operation of section 254 or 255.

(2)This Part ceases to apply to a matter if —

(a)either —

(i)the legal services are or will be provided wholly or primarily in another jurisdiction; or

(ii)the matter has a substantial connection with another jurisdiction,

or both; and

(b)either —

(i)the client enters under the corresponding law of the other jurisdiction into an agreement with the law practice that the corresponding provisions of the corresponding law apply to the matter; or

(ii)the client notifies under the corresponding law of the other jurisdiction (and within the time allowed by the corresponding law) the law practice in writing that the client requires the corresponding provisions of the corresponding law to apply to the matter.

(3)Nothing in this section prevents the application of this Part to the matter by means of a later agreement or notification under section 255.

257.How and where client first instructs law practice

A client first instructs a law practice in relation to a matter in a particular jurisdiction if the law practice first receives instructions from or on behalf of the client in relation to the matter in that jurisdiction, whether in person or by post, telephone, fax, email or other form of communication.

258.When matter has substantial connection with this jurisdiction

The regulations may prescribe the circumstances in which, or the rules to be used to determine whether, a matter has or does not have a substantial connection with this jurisdiction for the purposes of this Part.

259.What happens when different laws apply to matter

(1)This section applies if this Part applies to a matter for a period and a corresponding law applies for another period.

(2)If this Part applied to a matter for a period and a corresponding law applies to the matter afterwards, this Part continues to apply in respect of legal costs (if any) incurred while this Part applied to the matter.

(3)If a corresponding law applied to a matter for a period and this Part applies to the matter afterwards, this Part does not apply in respect of legal costs (if any) incurred while the corresponding law applied to the matter, so long as the corresponding law continues to apply in respect of those costs.

(4)However —

(a)the client may enter into a written agreement with the law practice that the cost assessment provisions of this Part are to apply in respect of all legal costs incurred in relation to the matter, and Division 8 accordingly applies in respect of those legal costs; or

(b)if the client enters into a written agreement with the law practice that the cost assessment provisions of a corresponding law are to apply in respect of all legal costs incurred in relation to the matter, Division 8 accordingly does not apply in respect of those legal costs.

(5)A written agreement referred to in subsection (4) need not be signed by the client but in that case the client’s acceptance must be communicated to the law practice by facsimile transmission, email or some other written form.

(6)If a corresponding law applied to a matter for a period and this Part applies to the matter afterwards, this Part does not require disclosure of any matters to the extent that they have already been disclosed under a corresponding law.

(7)This section has effect despite any other provision of this Part.

Division 3 — Costs disclosure

260.Disclosure of costs to clients

(1)A law practice must disclose to a client in accordance with this Division —

(a)the basis on which legal costs will be calculated, including whether a costs determination applies to any of the legal costs; and

(b)the client’s right to —

(i)negotiate a costs agreement with the law practice; and

(ii)receive a bill from the law practice; and

(iii)request an itemised bill after receipt of a lump sum bill; and

(iv)be notified under section 267 of any substantial change to the matters disclosed under this section;

and

(c)an estimate of the total legal costs if reasonably practicable or, if that is not reasonably practicable —

(i)a range of estimates of the total legal costs; and

(ii)an explanation of the major variables that will affect the calculation of those costs;

and

(d)details of the intervals (if any) at which the client will be billed; and

(e)the rate of interest (if any) that the law practice charges on overdue legal costs, whether that rate is a specific rate of interest or is a benchmark rate of interest (as referred to in subsection (2)); and

(f)if the matter is a litigious matter, an estimate of —

(i)the range of costs that may be recovered if the client is successful in the litigation; and

(ii)the range of costs the client may be ordered to pay if the client is unsuccessful;

and

(g)the client’s right to progress reports in accordance with section 269; and

(h)details of the person whom the client may contact to discuss the legal costs; and

(i)the following avenues that are open to the client in the event of a dispute in relation to legal costs —

(i)costs assessment under Division 8;

(ii)the setting aside of a costs agreement under section 288;

(iii)making a complaint under Part 13;

and

(j)any time limits that apply to the taking of any action referred to in paragraph (i); and

(k)that the law of this jurisdiction applies to legal costs in relation to the matter; and

(l)information about the client’s right —

(i)to accept under a corresponding law a written offer to enter into an agreement with the law practice that the corresponding provisions of the corresponding law apply to the matter; and

(ii)to notify under a corresponding law (and within the time allowed by the corresponding law) the law practice in writing that the client requires the corresponding provisions of the corresponding law to apply to the matter.

(2)For the purposes of subsection (1)(e), a benchmark rate of interest is a rate of interest for the time being equal to or calculated by reference to a rate of interest that is specified or determined from time to time by an ADI or another body or organisation, or by or under other legislation, and that is publicly available.

(3)The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the use of benchmark rates of interest, and in particular for or with respect to permitting, regulating or preventing the use of particular benchmark rates or particular kinds of benchmark rates.

(4)For the purposes of subsection (1)(f), the disclosure must include —

(a)a statement that an order by a court for the payment of costs in favour of the client will not necessarily cover the whole of the client’s legal costs; and

(b)if applicable, a statement that disbursements may be payable by the client even if the client enters into a conditional costs agreement.

(5)A law practice is taken to have complied with the requirement to disclose the details referred to in subsection (1)(b)(i), (ii) and (iii), (g), (i), (j) and (l) if it provides a written statement in or to the effect of a form prescribed by the regulations for the purposes of this subsection at the same time as the other details are disclosed as required by this section.

(6)A form prescribed for the purposes of subsection (5) may, instead of itself containing details of the kind referred to in that subsection, refer to publicly accessible sources of information (such as an internet website) from which those details can be obtained.

(7)The regulations may require the Board to develop a statement of the relevant details and to revise it as necessary to keep it up to date.

261.Disclosure if another law practice to be retained

(1)If a law practice intends to retain another law practice on behalf of a client, the first law practice must disclose to the client the details specified in section 260(1)(a), (c) and (d) in relation to the other law practice, in addition to any information required to be disclosed to the client under section 260.

(2)A law practice retained or to be retained on behalf of a client by another law practice is not required to make disclosure to the client under section 260, but must disclose to the other law practice the information necessary for the other law practice to comply with subsection (1).

(3)This section does not apply if the first law practice ceases to act for the client in the matter when the other law practice is retained.

262.How and when disclosure must be made

(1)Disclosure under section 260 must be made in writing before, or as soon as practicable after, the law practice is retained in the matter.

(2)Disclosure under section 261(1) must be made in writing before, or as soon as practicable after, the other law practice is retained.

(3)Disclosure made to a person before the law practice is retained in a matter is taken to be disclosure to the person as a client for the purposes of sections 260 and 261.

263.Exceptions to requirement for disclosure

(1)In this section —

GST has the meaning given in the A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax) Act 1999 of the Commonwealth;

public authority means an authority or body (whether a body corporate or not) established or incorporated for a public purpose by a law of a jurisdiction or of the Commonwealth, and includes a body corporate incorporated under a law of a jurisdiction or of the Commonwealth in which a jurisdiction or the Commonwealth has a controlling interest.

(2)Disclosure under section 260 or 261(1) is not required to be made in any of the following circumstances —

(a)if the total legal costs in the matter, excluding disbursements, are not likely to exceed $1 500 (exclusive of GST) or the prescribed amount (whichever is higher);

(b)if —

(i)the client has received one or more disclosures under section 260 or 261(1) from the law practice in the previous 12 months; and

(ii)the client has agreed in writing to waive the right to disclosure; and

(iii)a principal of the law practice decides on reasonable grounds that, having regard to the nature of the previous disclosures and the relevant circumstances, the further disclosure is not warranted;

(c)if the client is —

(i)a law practice or an Australian legal practitioner; or

(ii)a public company, a subsidiary of a public company, a large proprietary company, a foreign company, a subsidiary of a foreign company or a registered Australian body (within the meaning given to those terms in the Corporations Act); or

(iii)a financial services licensee (within the meaning given in the Corporations Act); or

(iv)a liquidator, administrator or receiver (within the meaning given to those terms in the Corporations Act); or

(v)a partnership that carries on the business of providing professional services if the partnership consists of more than 20 members or if the partnership would be a large proprietary company (within the meaning given in the Corporations Act) if it were a company; or

(vi)a proprietary company (within the meaning given in the Corporations Act) formed for the purpose of carrying out a joint venture, if any shareholder of the company is a person to whom disclosure of costs is not required; or

(vii)an unincorporated group of participants in a joint venture, if one or more members of the group are persons to whom disclosure of costs is not required and one or more members of the group are not such persons and if all of the members of the group who are not such persons have indicated that they waive their right to disclosure; or

(viii)a Minister of the Crown in right of a jurisdiction or the Commonwealth acting in the Minister’s capacity as such, or a government department or public authority of a jurisdiction or the Commonwealth;

(d)if the legal costs or the basis on which they will be calculated have or has been agreed as a result of a tender process;

(e)if the client will not be required to pay the legal costs or they will not otherwise be recovered by the law practice;

(f)in any other circumstances prescribed by the regulations.

(3)Despite subsection (2)(a), if a law practice becomes aware that the total legal costs are likely to exceed $1 500 (exclusive of GST) or the amount prescribed by the regulations (whichever is higher), the law practice must disclose the matters in section 260 or 261 (as the case requires) to the client as soon as practicable.

(4)A law practice must ensure that a written record of a principal’s decision that further disclosure is not warranted as mentioned in subsection (2)(b) is made and kept with the files relating to the matter concerned.

(5)The reaching of a decision referred to in subsection (4) otherwise than on reasonable grounds is capable of constituting unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct on the part of the principal.

(6)Nothing in this section affects or takes away from any client’s right —

(a)to progress reports in accordance with section 269; or

(b)to obtain reasonable information from the law practice in relation to any of the matters specified in section 260; or

(c)to negotiate a costs agreement with a law practice and to obtain a bill from the law practice.

264.Additional disclosure — settlement of litigious matters

(1)If a law practice negotiates the settlement of a litigious matter on behalf of a client, the law practice must disclose to the client, before the settlement is executed —

(a)a reasonable estimate of the amount of legal costs payable by the client if the matter is settled (including any legal costs of another party that the client is to pay); and

(b)a reasonable estimate of any contributions towards those costs likely to be received from another party.

(2)A law practice retained on behalf of a client by another law practice is not required to make a disclosure to the client under subsection (1) if the other law practice makes the disclosure to the client before the settlement is executed.

265.Additional disclosure — uplift fees

(1)If a costs agreement involves an uplift fee, the law practice must, before entering into the agreement, disclose to the client in writing —

(a)the law practice’s legal costs; and

(b)the uplift fee (or the basis for the calculation of the uplift fee); and

(c)the reasons why the uplift fee is warranted.

(2)A law practice is not required to make a disclosure under subsection (1) to a sophisticated client.

266.Form of disclosure

(1)Written disclosure to a client under this Division —

(a)must be expressed in clear plain language; and

(b)may be in a language other than English if the client is more familiar with that language.

(2)If the law practice is aware that the client is unable to read, the law practice must arrange for the information required to be given to a client under this Division to be conveyed orally to the client in addition to providing the written disclosure.

267.Ongoing obligation to disclose

A law practice must, in writing, disclose to a client any substantial change to anything included in a disclosure already made under this Division as soon as is reasonably practicable after the law practice becomes aware of that change.

268.Effect of failure to disclose

(1)If a law practice does not disclose to a client or an associated third party payer anything required by this Division to be disclosed, the client or associated third party payer (as the case may be) need not pay the legal costs unless they have been assessed under Division 8.

(2)A law practice that does not disclose to a client or an associated third party payer anything required by this Division to be disclosed may not maintain proceedings against the client or associated third party payer (as the case may be) for the recovery of legal costs unless the costs have been assessed under Division 8.

(3)If a law practice does not disclose to a client or an associated third party payer anything required by this Division to be disclosed and the client or associated third party payer has entered a costs agreement with the law practice, the client or associated third party payer may also apply under section 288 for the costs agreement to be set aside.

(4)If a law practice does not disclose to a client or an associated third party payer anything required by this Division to be disclosed then, on an assessment of the relevant legal costs, the amount of the costs may be reduced by an amount considered by the taxing officer to be proportionate to the seriousness of the failure to disclose.

(5)If a law practice retains another law practice on behalf of a client and the first law practice fails to disclose something to a client solely because the retained practice failed to disclose the relevant information as required by section 261(2), then subsections (1) to (4) —

(a)do not apply to the legal costs owing to the first law practice on account of legal services provided by it, to the extent that the non‑disclosure by the first law practice was caused by the failure of the retained law practice to disclose the relevant information; and

(b)do apply to the legal costs owing to the retained law practice.

(6)In a matter involving both a client and an associated third party payer where disclosure has been made to one of them but not the other —

(a)subsection (1) does not affect the liability of the one to whom disclosure was made to pay the legal costs; and

(b)subsection (2) does not prevent proceedings from being maintained against the one to whom the disclosure was made for the recovery of those legal costs.

(7)Failure by a law practice to comply with this Division is capable of constituting unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct on the part of any Australian legal practitioner or Australian‑registered foreign lawyer involved in the failure.

269.Progress reports

(1)A law practice must give a client, on reasonable request —

(a)a written report of the progress of the matter in which the law practice is retained by the client; and

(b)a written report of the legal costs incurred by the client to date, or since the last bill (if any), in the matter.

(2)A law practice may charge a client a reasonable amount for a report under subsection (1)(a) but must not charge a client for a report under subsection (1)(b).

(3)A law practice retained on behalf of a client by another law practice is not required to give a report to the client under subsection (1), but must disclose to the other law practice any information necessary for the other law practice to comply with that subsection.

(4)Subsection (3) does not apply if the other law practice ceases to act for the client in the matter when the law practice is retained.

270.Disclosure to associated third party payers

(1)If a law practice is required to make a disclosure to a client of the practice under this Division, the practice must, in accordance with subsections (2) and (3), also make the same disclosure to any associated third party payer for the client, but only to the extent that the details or matters disclosed are relevant to the associated third party payer and relate to costs that are payable by the associated third party payer in respect of legal services provided to the client.

(2)A disclosure under subsection (1) must be made in writing —

(a)at the time the disclosure to the client is required under this Division; or

(b)if the law practice only afterwards becomes aware of the legal obligation of the associated third party payer to pay legal costs of the client — as soon as practicable after the practice becomes aware of the obligation.

(3)Section 266 applies to a disclosure to an associated third party payer under subsection (1) in the same way as it applies to a client.

(4)An associated third party payer for a client of a law practice has the same right as the client to obtain reports under section 269(1)(b) of legal costs incurred by the client, but only to the extent that the costs are payable by the associated third party payer in respect of legal services provided to the client, and the law practice must comply with that section accordingly.

Division 4 — Legal costs generally

271.Basis on which legal costs are recoverable

Subject to Division 2, legal costs are recoverable —

(a)under a costs agreement made in accordance with Division 6 or the corresponding provision of a corresponding law; or

(b)if paragraph (a) does not apply, in accordance with an applicable costs determination; or

(c)if neither paragraph (a) nor paragraph (b) applies, according to the fair and reasonable value of the legal services provided.

272.Security for legal costs

A law practice may take reasonable security from a client for legal costs (including security for the payment of interest on unpaid legal costs) and may refuse or cease to act for a client who does not provide reasonable security.

273.Interest on unpaid legal costs

(1)A law practice may charge interest on unpaid legal costs if the costs are unpaid 30 days or more after the practice has given a bill for the costs in accordance with Division 7.

(2)A law practice may also charge interest on unpaid legal costs in accordance with a costs agreement.

(3)A law practice must not charge interest under subsection (1) or (2) on unpaid legal costs unless the bill for those costs contains a statement that interest is payable and of the rate of interest.

(4)A law practice may not charge interest under this section or under a costs agreement at a rate that exceeds the rate prescribed by the regulations.

Division 5 — Legal costs determinations

274.Terms used

In this Division —

contentious business means legal services by an Australian legal practitioner in or for the purposes of any action, suit or proceedings before a court, but does not include the administration of estates and trusts;

court includes an arbitrator, tribunal, or person, having power to require the production of documents or the answering of questions.

275.Legal costs determinations

(1)The Legal Costs Committee may make legal costs determinations regulating the costs that may be charged by law practices in respect of —

(a)non‑contentious business; and

(b)contentious business before —

(i)the Supreme Court; or

(ii)the District Court; or

(iii)the Magistrates Court; or

(iv)a court of summary jurisdiction; or

(v)the State Administrative Tribunal; or

(vi)the Family Court of Western Australia; or

(vii)any other court declared by the Attorney General under subsection (7) to be a court to which this section applies.

(2)A costs determination may provide that law practices may charge —

(a)according to a scale of rates of commission or percentages; or

(b)a specified amount; or

(c)a maximum amount; or

(d)in any other way or combination of ways.

(3)A costs determination —

(a)may differ according to different classes of legal services; and

(b)may confer a discretionary authority or impose a duty on a specified person or class of persons.

(4)A declaration must not be made under subsection (7) in respect of a dispute resolution authority as defined in the Workers’ Compensation and Injury Management Act 1981.

(5)If —

(a)another written law refers to a determination under this section or a costs determination as defined in section 252; and

(b)the determination is for purposes of the written law that are, or include, purposes other than the purposes of subsection (1) (the other purposes),

the Legal Costs Committee may make a determination for the other purposes.

(6)A costs determination may be amended or revoked by a subsequent determination.

(7)For the purposes of subsection (1)(b)(vii), the Attorney General may, by order published in the Gazette, declare any court to be a court in respect of which the Legal Costs Committee may make a costs determination and may, by subsequent order so published, vary or revoke that order.

276.Review of costs determinations

(1)The Legal Costs Committee must review each costs determination in force at least once in the period of 2 years after it was made and in each period of 2 years after that period.

(2)The Attorney General may at any time direct the Legal Costs Committee to review a costs determination in force and the Legal Costs Committee must carry out that review as soon as practicable after being so directed.

277.Inquiries by Legal Costs Committee

(1)Before making or reviewing a costs determination the Legal Costs Committee must —

(a)give public notice under section 278 of its intention to make or review the determination; and

(b)if the determination is to be made or reviewed in respect of proceedings before a court, consult with that court; and

(c)make such other inquiries as it considers necessary to facilitate the making or review of the determination.

(2)Subject to subsection (1) the Legal Costs Committee —

(a)may inform itself as it thinks fit; and

(b)must take into consideration submissions received by it in relation to legal costs, whether or not those submissions were received in response to a notice under section 278; and

(c)is not required to conduct proceedings in a formal manner; and

(d)is not bound by the rules of evidence.

278.Notice and submissions in respect of determination

(1)The Legal Costs Committee must —

(a)give written notice of its intention to make or review a costs determination to the Law Society; and

(b)publish notice of its intention in 2 issues of a daily newspaper circulating throughout this State.

(2)A notice under subsection (1) must —

(a)state that submissions on the intended costs determination or review may be made to the Legal Costs Committee; and

(b)specify the manner in which the submissions may be made; and

(c)specify the period within which the submissions may be made (being a period of not less than 30 days after the day on which the notice is last published under subsection (1)(b)).

279.Report and publication of costs determinations

(1)As soon as practicable after making a costs determination the Legal Costs Committee must report to the Attorney General —

(a)the determination; and

(b)the reasons for its decisions in respect of the determination.

(2)The report must be published in the Gazette as soon as practicable after it is received by the Attorney General.

(3)A costs determination comes into force on —

(a)the day on which the report of the determination is published under subsection (2); or

(b)if a later day is specified in the report, that day.

(4)Judicial notice must be taken of —

(a)a costs determination; and

(b)the day of publication of the report of the determination.

280.Effect of costs determination

(1)Subject to any costs agreement made in accordance with Division 6 or the corresponding provision of a corresponding law, section 306 and the Legal Aid Commission Act 1976 section 14 —

(a)the taxation of bills of law practices; and

(b)any other aspect of the costs charged by law practices,

is regulated by an applicable costs determination.

(2)Despite subsection (1), if a court or judicial officer is of the opinion that the amount of costs allowable in respect of a matter under a costs determination is inadequate because of the unusual difficulty, complexity or importance of the matter, the court or officer may do all or any of the following —

(a)order the payment of costs above those fixed by the determination;

(b)fix higher limits of costs than those fixed in the determination;

(c)remove limits on costs fixed in the determination;

(d)make any order or give any direction for the purposes of enabling costs above those in the determination to be ordered or assessed.

(3)Nothing in subsection (1) is to be construed as limiting the power of a court, a judicial officer or a taxing officer of a court to determine in any particular case before that court or judicial officer the amount of costs allowed.

(4)If a costs determination is in force in respect of any business referred to in section 275(1), any other subsidiary legislation fixing or purporting to regulate the remuneration of law practices in respect of that kind of business is of no force or effect.

281.Reports

The Legal Costs Committee may investigate and report and make recommendations to the Attorney General on any matter relating to —

(a)bills generally and, in particular, the desirability of the use of scales in the calculation and fixing of bills; and

(b)the basis on which costs are or should be calculated and fixed; and

(c)any other aspect of the remuneration of law practices.

Division 6 — Costs agreements

282.Making costs agreements

(1)A costs agreement may be made —

(a)between a client and a law practice retained by the client; or

(b)between a client and a law practice retained on behalf of the client by another law practice; or

(c)between a law practice and another law practice that retained that law practice on behalf of a client; or

(d)between a law practice and an associated third party payer.

(2)A costs agreement must be written or evidenced in writing.

(3)A costs agreement may consist of a written offer in accordance with subsection (4) that is accepted in writing or by other conduct.

(4)The offer must clearly state —

(a)that it is an offer to enter into a costs agreement; and

(b)that the offer can be accepted in writing or by other conduct; and

(c)the type of conduct that will constitute acceptance.

(5)Except as provided in section 309, a costs agreement cannot provide that the legal costs to which it relates are not subject to costs assessment under Division 8.

(6)A reference in section 288 and in any prescribed provision of this Part to a client is, in relation to a costs agreement that is entered into between a law practice and an associated third party payer as referred to in subsection (1)(d) and to which a client of the law practice is not a party, a reference to the associated third party payer.

283.Conditional costs agreements

(1)A costs agreement may provide that the payment of some or all of the legal costs is conditional on the successful outcome of the matter to which those costs relate.

(2)A conditional costs agreement may relate to any matter, except a matter that involves —

(a)criminal proceedings; or

(b)proceedings that relate to or involve child protection, custody, guardianship or adoption; or

(c)proceedings under either of the following Acts —

(i)the Family Court Act 1997;

(ii)the Children and Community Services Act 2004;

or

(d)proceedings under any of the following Acts of the Commonwealth —

(i)the Family Law Act 1975;

(ii)the Migration Act 1958;

(iii)the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989;

or

(e)proceedings prescribed by the regulations.

(3)A conditional costs agreement —

(a)must set out the circumstances that constitute the successful outcome of the matter to which it relates; and

(b)may provide for disbursements to be paid irrespective of the outcome of the matter; and

(c)must be —

(i)in writing; and

(ii)in clear plain language; and

(iii)signed by the client;

and

(d)must contain a statement that the client has been informed of the client’s right to seek independent legal advice before entering into the agreement; and

(e)must contain a cooling‑off period of not less than 5 clear business days during which the client, by written notice, may terminate the agreement.

(4)Subsection (3)(c)(iii), (d) and (e) does not apply to —

(a)a conditional costs agreement made under section 282(1)(c); or

(b)a conditional costs agreement made with a sophisticated client.

(5)If a client terminates an agreement within the period referred to in subsection (3)(e), the law practice —

(a)may recover only those legal costs in respect of legal services performed for the client before that termination that were performed on the instructions of the client and with the client’s knowledge that the legal services would be performed during that period; and

(b)without affecting the generality of paragraph (a), may not recover the uplift fee (if any).

284.Conditional costs agreements involving uplift fees

(1)A conditional costs agreement may provide for the payment of an uplift fee.

(2)The basis of calculation of the uplift fee must be separately identified in the agreement.

(3)The agreement must contain an estimate of the uplift fee or, if that is not reasonably practicable —

(a)a range of estimates of the uplift fee; and

(b)an explanation of the major variables that will affect the calculation of the uplift fee.

(4)If a conditional costs agreement relates to a litigious matter —

(a)the agreement must not provide for the payment of an uplift fee unless the law practice has a reasonable belief that a successful outcome of the matter is reasonably likely; and

(b)the uplift fee must not exceed 25% of the legal costs (excluding disbursements) otherwise payable.

(5)A law practice must not enter into a costs agreement in contravention of this section.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

285.Contingency fees are prohibited

(1)A law practice must not enter into a costs agreement under which the amount payable to the law practice, or any part of that amount, is calculated by reference to the amount of any award or settlement or the value of any property that may be recovered in any proceedings to which the agreement relates.

Penalty: a fine of $10 000.

(2)Subsection (1) does not apply to the extent that the costs agreement adopts an applicable costs determination.

286.Effect of costs agreement

Subject to this Division and Division 8, a costs agreement may be enforced in the same way as any other contract.

287.Certain costs agreements void

(1)A costs agreement that contravenes, or is entered into in contravention of, any provision of this Division, is void.

(2)Subject to this section and Division 8, legal costs under a void costs agreement are recoverable as set out in section 271(b) or (c).

(3)However, a law practice is not entitled to recover any amount in excess of the amount that the law practice would have been entitled to recover if the costs agreement had not been void and must repay any excess amount received.

(4)A law practice that has entered into a costs agreement in contravention of section 284 is not entitled to recover the whole or any part of the uplift fee and must repay the amount received in respect of the uplift fee to the person from whom it was received.

(5)A law practice that has entered into a costs agreement in contravention of section 285 is not entitled to recover any amount in respect of the provision of legal services in the matter to which the costs agreement related and must repay any amount received in respect of those services to the person from whom it was received.

(6)If a law practice does not repay an amount required by subsection (3), (4) or (5) to be repaid, the person entitled to be repaid may recover the amount from the law practice as a debt in a court of competent jurisdiction.

288.Setting aside costs agreements

(1)In this section —

client means a person to whom or for whom legal services are or have been provided.

(2)On application by a client, the Supreme Court may order that a costs agreement be set aside if satisfied that the agreement is not fair or reasonable.

(3)In determining whether or not a costs agreement is fair or reasonable, and without limiting the matters to which the Supreme Court can have regard, the Supreme Court may have regard to any or all of the following matters —

(a)whether the client was induced to enter into the agreement by the fraud or misrepresentation of the law practice or of any representative of the law practice;

(b)whether any Australian legal practitioner or Australian‑registered foreign lawyer acting on behalf of the law practice has been found guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct in relation to the provision of legal services to which the agreement relates;

(c)whether the law practice has failed to make any of the disclosures required under Division 3;

(d)the circumstances and the conduct of the parties before and when the agreement was made;

(e)the circumstances and the conduct of the parties in the matters after the agreement was made;

(f)whether and how the agreement addresses the effect on costs of matters and changed circumstances that might foreseeably arise and affect the extent and nature of legal services provided under the agreement;

(g)whether and how billing under the agreement addresses changed circumstances affecting the extent and nature of legal services provided under the agreement.

(4)The Supreme Court may adjourn the hearing of an application under this section pending the completion of any investigation or determination of any charge in relation to the conduct of any Australian legal practitioner or Australian‑registered foreign lawyer.

(5)If the Supreme Court determines that a costs agreement be set aside, the Court may make an order in relation to the payment of legal costs the subject of the agreement.

(6)In making an order under subsection (5) —

(a)the Supreme Court must apply the applicable costs determination (if any); or

(b)if there is no applicable costs determination — the Court must determine the fair and reasonable legal costs in relation to the work to which the agreement related, taking into account —

(i)the seriousness of the conduct of the law practice or any Australian legal practitioner or Australian‑registered foreign lawyer acting on its behalf; and

(ii)whether or not it was reasonable to carry out the work; and

(iii)whether or not the work was carried out in a reasonable manner.

(7)In making an order under subsection (5), the Supreme Court may not order the payment of an amount in excess of the amount that the law practice would have been entitled to recover if the costs agreement had not been set aside.

(8)For the purposes of subsection (6)(b), the Supreme Court may have regard to any or all of the following matters —

(a)whether the law practice and any Australian legal practitioner or Australian‑registered foreign lawyer acting on its behalf complied with this Act;

(b)any disclosures made by the law practice under Division 3, or the failure to make any disclosures required under that Division;

(c)any relevant advertisement as to —

(i)the law practice’s costs; or

(ii)the skills of the law practice or of any Australian legal practitioner or Australian‑registered foreign lawyer acting on its behalf;

(d)the skill, labour and responsibility displayed on the part of the Australian legal practitioner or Australian‑registered foreign lawyer responsible for the matter;

(e)the retainer and whether the work done was within the scope of the retainer;

(f)the complexity, novelty or difficulty of the matter;

(g)the quality of the work done;

(h)the place where, and circumstances in which, the work was done;

(i)the time within which the work was required to be done;

(j)any other relevant matter.

(9)The Supreme Court may determine whether or not a costs agreement exists.

(10)The Supreme Court may order the payment of the costs of and incidental to a hearing under this section.

Division 7 — Billing

289.Legal costs cannot be recovered unless bill has been