England and Wales: SRA to launch super-exam in 2020

April 25th, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) will introduce its planned super-exam, the Solicitors Qualification Examination, despite opposition from the profession…

For more information, please read the ‘The Lawyer‘ (25 April 2017).

Update on national continuous training rules

May 23rd, 2016 § 0 comments § permalink

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In 2015/2016, the CCBE updated its information on national continuous training rules, which were first gathered in 2011.

19 CCBE full member countries have a specific mandatory continuous training regime. In most of these countries, it has been introduced in the past 15 years.

12 full member countries have no specific mandatory continuous training regime; however, in all of these countries various continuous training opportunities exist.

In most countries, the extent of the training obligation is counted in hours, credits or points, though in some in events and days. The average extent of the training obligation is approximately 14 hours/points/credits annually, ranging from four academic hours in Bulgaria to 20 hours in France. In most countries, foreign training activities are recognised. The majority of member countries have opted for “regular control” which means that lawyers are obliged to submit a record of their training activities to the Bar/Law Society on an annual basis. In some member countries, compliance is exclusively monitored via “random control” which means that only a certain number of lawyers/law firms are checked. There are also member countries in which both “regular control” and “random control” are carried out.

The CCBE has prepared a brief layout and a summary detailing the regimes’ specificities by using the following categories: extent of training; activities (courses, language courses, teaching, writing/publishing, other); recognition of foreign training activities; availability of e-methods; provider (bar/law society, accredited providers, free market providers); supervision (regular and/or random control); and sanctions (non-disciplinary and/or disciplinary).

All relevant information on the national rules – including country overviews – can be found here.

National Rules on Specialisation

December 8th, 2015 § 0 comments § permalink

Specialization drawing

In order to develop a better understanding of how lawyers’ specialisation works throughout the European Union the CCBE has been collecting information about specialisation regimes in 44 European jurisdictions from its CCBE members.

Most European jurisdictions (34) do not have a specific specialisation regime, however lawyers can often indicate their preferred areas of practice. 10 jurisdictions have a specialisation regime: Belgium (OBFG), Croatia, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Slovenia, Switzerland, the United Kingdom (solicitors in both England and Wales, and Scotland). Such jurisdictions tend to have precise rules regulating the bestowing and use of a specialist’s title, usually including minimum prior practice in the field, theoretical expertise, and obligations of continuing training.

The number of specialisation fields varies, but it usually is around 20. Across all the jurisdictions surveyed, the most common fields for specialisation are: family law, criminal law, commercial law, labour law, social law, intellectual property law, tax law, IT law, banking law, administrative/public law, and the law of insurance.

The local Regional Chamber of Legal Advisers of Katowice in Poland will be holding a Workshop on Lawyers’ Specialisation on 15 April 2016 in Katowice. Experts from across Europe will participate in this workshop to discuss the pros and cons of introducing Lawyers’ Specialisation and exchanging experiences.

Further information: 

Comparative Note on national regimes of specialisation

National rules of specialisation

Workshop on Lawyers’ Specialisation, Katowice