Have You Got A Fake Suit?
We often see newspaper reports and media reporting on fake lawyers and this is concerning to us. But what can you do to make sure your lawyer is legit? We wish to remind the community that if someone is concerned and wishes to ensure that their solicitor is properly registered as a solicitor they can […]
Have You Got A Fake Suit?
We often see newspaper reports and media reporting on fake lawyers and this is concerning to us. But what can you do to make sure your lawyer is legit?
We wish to remind the community that if someone is concerned and wishes to ensure that their solicitor is properly registered as a solicitor they can check with the Queensland Law Society, either by phone or online.
It’s a criminal offense to pretend to be a lawyer when you are not, but in truth prosecutions are rare.
Practising law is a regulated profession and only certified lawyers are allowed to do certain things, (such as appear on behalf of someone else in Court or be paid to undertake litigation).
How to become a (real) lawyer:
To practise as a solicitor in Queensland involves four steps:
- Completion of an approved law degree
- Completion of an approved practical legal training course or a supervised traineeship
- Application for admission to Roll of Lawyers
- Application for a practising certificate
A practising certificate is required to practise law in Queensland. Certificates are issued pursuant to s.49 of the Legal Profession Act 2007, and must be renewed annually.
For details on how to proceed if you have qualified overseas, access the below links:
- Application for assessment of overseas qualifications
- Information kit to apply for skills assessment
- FAQ for assessment of overseas qualifications
- Guideline for assessing overseas applications issued under Rule 9AA(1)(c)
Practitioners who intend to practise as principals are also required to successfully complete the QLS practice management course. This course expands practitioners’ managerial skills and helps them to easily transition to the role of principal.
To become an Accredited Specialist in law:
In summary, Accredited Specialists undertake more training. For example, you have to be admitted as a lawyer for a minimum of 5 years, with 3 years (before the application for accreditation) being almost exclusively in the area of specialism. You also have to undertake additional exams, however, it varies between the specialist areas what exactly is required.
To remain as Accredited Specialists, you even have to do additional hours of CPD every year which must be in the area of specialisation. It’s very intensive. You can always check to ensure you are dealing with an Accredited Specialist by asking for the lawyer’s credentials.
What are Lawyers Allowed To Do?
To answer the question of what are lawyers allowed to do those other people can’t, the Legal Profession Act (QLD) says only people who are admitted as lawyers are permitted to engage in legal practice.
Are you dealing with a genuine suit? It pays to be sure.
Here’s ACA’s recent story on a fake lawyer that got busted.