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LSRA Circular 1 of 2020 (Archived)

02 April 2020 | Archived

VALIDITY OF CURRENT PRACTISING CERTIFICATES

  1. The functions of the Registrar under the Solicitors’ (Practising Certificates) Rules 2005 (the “2005 Rules”) became the functions of the LSRA on the coming into force of Section 18(1)(a) of the Legal Services Act 2017 (the “LSA”).
  2. Current practising certificates are effective until 30th April 2020 pursuant to Rule 3(1) of the 2005 Rules. Their renewal is to coincide with commencement of the registration regime for all persons who provide legal services created by the Act.
  3. The restrictions on work and movement currently in force as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic are hampering the commencement of the registration regime and, in any event, are also restricting the ability to issue practising certificates under the 2005 Rules and the process of renewal of practising certificates.
  4. In these circumstances the Chief Justice after consultation with the LSRA has today published by Legal Notice in the Gazette the Solicitors’ (Practising Certificates) (Extension of Validity) Rules 2020 (the “2020 Rules”).
  5. The 2020 Rules provide for the extension of practising certificates that are valid as at 30th April 2020 to remain valid up to 30th June 2020 subject to:
    1. the auditors’ certificate having been filed by 31st December 2019 and satisfying the LSRA of compliance with the Solicitors’ Accounts Rules 2005, pursuant to Rule 4(1) of the 2005 Rules; and
    2. providing to the LSRA proof of continuing professional indemnity insurance until 30th June 2020, in the sum of £1m each claim and in the aggregate.
  6. You should familiarise yourself with the 2020 Rules and note that the 2005 Rules remain in force save insofar as the 2020 Rules make express provision in respect of the period(s) of, and for the purposes of extension of validity.
  7. Proof of PI cover and any other communication should in the first place be sent by email to info@lsra.gi and originals should be retained for subsequent inspection, in case they are required.

David Dumas

QC CEO

SECOND SUPPLEMENT TO THE GIBRALTAR GAZETTE

No. 4692 GIBRALTAR Thursday 2nd April 2020


LEGAL NOTICE NO. 146 OF 2020

 

LEGAL SERVICES ACT 2017

SOLICITORS’ (PRACTISING CERTIFICATES) (EXTENSION OF VALIDITY) RULES 2020

 

In exercise of the powers conferred upon him by section 18(1)(b) of the Legal Services Act the Chief Justice has made these Rules

Title and commencement.

1.(1) These rules may be cited as the Solicitors’ (Practising Certificates) (Extension of Validity) Rules 2020 (2) These rules come into operation on the date of publication.

Interpretation

2. In these Rules –

“2005 Rules” means the Solicitors’ (Practising Certificates) Rules 2005

“LSRA” means the Legal Services Regulatory Authority a statutory authority created by section 14 of the Legal Services Act 2017

“solicitor” includes a barrister who acts as a solicitor pursuant to section 32 of the Supreme Court Act and a registered European Lawyer.

“auditor” means an auditor whose name is included on the register established by the Auditors Approval and Registration Act, 1998.

Extension of Validity of Practising Certificates.

3. Subject to the requirements set out in rule 5 the validity of any Practising Certificate issued under the 2005 Rules and valid and subsisting as 30 April 2020, is extended until 30 June 2020.

4. The Chief Justice after consultation with the LSRA and by Notice in the Gazette may extend the period of validity for such further period or periods as he may determine subject to compliance with the requirements of rule 5.

Requirements for Extension of Validity.

5. The requirements referred to in rule 4 are –

(a) the solicitor must have provided to the Registrar not later than 31 December 2019 the auditors’ certificate which satisfy the LSRA that such solicitor has complied with the Solicitors’ Accounts Rules for the preceding year, pursuant to rule 4(1) of the 2005 Rules;

(b) the solicitor must produce to the Chief Executive Officer of the LSRA not later than 15 April 2020 a certificate of cover or similar document which satisfies the Chief Executive Officer that the solicitor has taken out and is maintaining for the period(s) of validity professional indemnity insurance in the minimum sum of £1m each claim and in the aggregate.

No Extension.

6. Where the validity of a solicitor’s Practising Certificate shall not be extended due to noncompliance with rule 5, the LSRA shall notify the solicitor no later than 22 April 2020.

Deemed Compliance.

7. A solicitor shall be deemed to have complied with rule 5 if he satisfies the Chief Executive Officer of the LSRA that the firm of solicitors in which he is a consultant, partner, associate or employee has complied with rule 5.

Continuing Application of the 2005 Rules.

8. Save as expressly provided for in these Rules strictly in respect of the period(s), and for the purposes of the extension of validity of Practising Certificates, the 2005 Rules shall continue to apply.

Appeal.

9. Any solicitor who is aggrieved by the validity of his Practising Certificate not being extended may appeal in writing to the Chief Justice.

Dated: 2nd April 2020.

A E DUDLEY,
Chief Justice.


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Gibraltar Gazette, No. 4692, Thursday 2nd April 2020