Find answers to your CPD questions here
2020-2021 CPD Year
In the extraordinary circumstances of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Law Society understands that solicitors may need to complete more than five of their CPD units through private study of audio/visual material. This means that for the 2020-21 CPD year, the Law Society will not be enforcing the five-unit cap on the private study of audio/visual material as set out in the Legal Profession Uniform Continuing Professional Development (Solicitors) Rules 2015 (CPD rules).
Details to note:
- The audio/visual material used for private study must be specifically designed for the purpose of updating a solicitor’s knowledge and/or skills relevant to his/her practice (CPD rule 8.2).
- Solicitors are already permitted to complete an unlimited number of units of ‘web-based programming’ under the CPD rules. Web-based programming is different from the private study of audio/visual material because it takes place in real-time or involves an interactive element such as a discussion group.
All other CPD requirements must be complied with unless an exemption or extension is granted
All other requirements under the CPD rules must be satisfied. This includes completing the required number of CPD units (usually 10) and the following mandatory CPD units:
- ethics and professional responsibility;
- practice management and business skills;
- professional skills; and
- substantive law.
Solicitors also have a responsibility to maintain accurate records of their engagement in CPD activities.
Solicitors who are unable to comply with their CPD requirements for any reason should seek an exemption or extension of time from the Law Society, before 31 March if possible. Please send any CPD questions to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject ‘CPD COVID-19’.
An application for an extension of time or exemption from CPD requirements may be made by completing the appropriate form:
- For solicitors who anticipate not being able to meet their CPD requirements by 31 March 2021 – Application for extension of time to comply with CPD requirements
- For solicitors who anticipate not being able to meet their CPD requirements due to extenuating circumstances or an absence from practice – Application for exemption from CPD requirements
General information about CPD requirements can be accessed on the Law Society website here. Visit LawInform.com.au to book in your online CPD.