- Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Bill 2021 passes through State Parliament
- WA to join the Legal Profession Uniform Law scheme
- Uniform law harmonises regulation of the legal profession, cuts red tape and creates a single system to govern legal practice across participating jurisdictions
Western Australia is on track to join the Legal Profession Uniform Law scheme, following the passage of enabling legislation through State Parliament.
It is anticipated the scheme will become operational from July 1, 2022 following further consultation with stakeholders - helping to make WA's legal system, including the legal profession, more accessible, efficient and cost effective.
The scheme came into operation in Victoria and New South Wales in July 2015. In February 2019, WA signed a landmark agreement with those two jurisdictions to join the scheme. The passage of the Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Bill 2021 (WA) will allow new uniform laws for the legal profession to commence in WA as required under the agreement.
The scheme reduces compliance costs for firms operating across participating jurisdictions by simplifying and standardising regulatory obligations, cutting red tape and creating a common market for legal services across participating jurisdictions.
Consumers of legal services will not only be afforded greater protection under the scheme and benefit from greater consistency of experience across jurisdictions, but they will also be empowered to make informed choices about their legal options, with a single framework governing legal practice which is administered by local bodies across participating jurisdictions.
When WA officially joins Victoria and NSW in the Legal Profession Uniform Law scheme, the scheme will operate in respect of 75 per cent of the legal profession in Australia.
For more information about the Legal Profession Uniform Law, visit https://www.legalservicescouncil.org.au
Comments attributed to Attorney General John Quigley:
"I am pleased that this Government has been able to deliver what is a significant step forward in creating a simpler and more efficient system of regulating legal practice in Western Australia.
"Not only will the scheme cut red tape for both lawyers and their clients, it will also enable WA lawyers to practise seamlessly across jurisdictions under uniform legislation and regulatory standards.
"Sixty eight per cent of Australia's practising lawyers are regulated by uniform law, and that will increase to 75 per cent when the scheme comes into operation.
"I would again like to acknowledge the support of the legal profession, the Legal Practice Board, the Legal Profession Complaints Committee, the Law Society of Western Australia and the Western Australian Bar Association, together with many other stakeholders who have contributed to the development of this legislation."
Attorney General's office - 6552 6800