What is Specialist Accreditation?
The Law Society of NSW operates the Specialist Accreditation Scheme to help the general public identify solicitors who have demonstrated expertise in a particular area of law.
Solicitors who fulfil the requirements of the Scheme are entitled to use, after their name, the words ‘Accredited Specialist’ in the nominated area of practice.
Only individual solicitors can be Accredited Specialists, not firms.
What is an Accredited Specialist?
In the legal profession an Accredited Specialist is a practising solicitor who has demonstrated specialised competence in a particular area of law and has been conferred Specialist Accreditation by the Law Society under its Specialist Accreditation Scheme.
Why should I use an Accredited Specialist?
To become an Accredited Specialist a solicitor must have practised law full-time for at least five years and worked in their area of legal specialty for at least three years.
To gain status as an Accredited Specialist a solicitor must pass the Law Society’s rigorous assessments in communication, problem solving, client relations and, of course, their specialist area of law.
To maintain their status as an Accredited Specialist, a solicitor must annually renew their accreditation to practise the law and membership of the Law Society, plus ensure they maintain their high level skills and knowledge by completing additional professional development points.
How do I know if a solicitor is an Accredited Specialist?
Look out for the Specialist Accreditation logo, the words ‘Accredited Specialist’ or the abbreviation ‘Acc Spec (area of law)’ after a solicitor’s name on their letterhead or promotional material.
Check they have the status of ‘Accredited Specialist’ against their profile on the Find a lawyer listing.
Be sure that the Accredited Specialist is accredited in the area of law you need assistance in.
How can I find an Accredited Specialist?
Visit the Law Society Find a lawyer page. Narrow your search by specifying the area of law using the drop down arrow menu in the Accredited Specialist field. You can search across the following areas:
Employment & Industrial Law
Government and Administration Law/Public Law
Local Government and Planning Law/Planning & Environment Law
Planning & Environment Law
Wills & Estates