Applications for practising certificates and registration

Version 9 of the Handbook was published on 1 April 2014. For more information, please click "History" above.

Regulation 2: Applications for practising certificates and registration

2.1

The following applications may be made under regulation 2:

(a)

unless regulation 3 applies, initial applications for practising certificates and applications for replacement of practising certificates under section 9 of the SA;

(b)

unless regulation 3 applies, initial applications for registration in the register of European lawyers and applications for renewal of registration in the register of European lawyers under regulation 17 of the European Communities (Lawyer's Practice) Regulations 2000; and

(c)

initial applications for registration in the register of foreign lawyers and applications for renewal of registration in the register of foreign lawyers under section 89 of the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990.

2.2

Where application is made under regulation 2 for a practising certificate or for replacement of a practising certificate the SRA must grant the application if:

(a)

the applicant's name is on the roll of solicitors;

(b)

the applicant is not suspended from practice as a solicitor;

(c)

the applicant has supplied satisfactory evidence that he or she will comply with or be exempt from the SRA Indemnity Insurance Rules; and

(d)

the application is made in accordance with these regulations,

and the SRA must not grant the application unless conditions (a) to (c) are met.

2.3

Applications for initial registration or for renewal of registration in the register of European lawyers

(a)

Where application is made under regulation 2 for initial registration or for renewal of registration in the register of European lawyers the SRA must grant the application if:

(i)

the applicant is not (subject to (c) below) a solicitor, barrister or advocate of any of the UK jurisdictions, a barrister of the Irish Republic, or registered under the Establishment Directive with the BSB, the Faculty of Advocates or the Bar Council of Northern Ireland;

(ii)

the applicant is a member, and entitled to practise as such, of an Establishment Directive profession;

(iii)

the applicant is a national of an Establishment Directive state;

(iv)

the applicant applies with the intention of practising on a permanent basis in the UK and is legally entitled to do so;

(v)

the applicant is not struck off the register, suspended from the register, or subject to a direction of the Tribunal prohibiting his or her restoration to the register;

(vi)

the applicant has supplied satisfactory evidence that he or she will comply with or be exempt from the SRA Indemnity Insurance Rules; and

(vii)

the application is made in accordance with these regulations,

except that if the SRA has reasonable cause to believe that the applicant is not a fit and proper person to practise in the UK it may refuse an application for initial registration.

(b)

The SRA must not grant the application unless the conditions in (a)(i) to (vi) are met.

(c)

The provisions of (a)(i) above will not apply to prevent the renewal of the registration of a European lawyer who has become a solicitor of Scotland or Northern Ireland at a time when he or she was registered both with the SRA and with the Law Society of Scotland and/or the Law Society of Northern Ireland.

2.4

Where application is made under regulation 2 for initial registration or for renewal of registration in the register of foreign lawyers, the following provisions apply.

(a)

The SRA may grant the application (subject to such conditions as it may think fit) if:

(i)

the applicant is not a solicitor, REL or barrister;

(ii)

the applicant is a member, and entitled to practise as such, of a legal profession which is regulated within a jurisdiction outside England and Wales and is approved by the SRA in accordance with paragraph 2(2) of Schedule 14 to the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990;

(iii)

the applicant is not struck off the register, subject to an order of the Tribunal suspending his or her registration or subject to a direction of the Tribunal prohibiting his or her restoration to the register; and

(iv)

the application is made in accordance with these regulations.

(b)

The SRA may (without prejudice to its general discretion under paragraph 2 of Schedule 14 to the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990) reject the application if:

(i)

the SRA is not satisfied that the applicant is eligible for registration;

(ii)

the applicant is prohibited by the rules of his or her profession from practising as a manager of a recognised body;

(iii)

the SRA is not satisfied that the applicant will be in compliance with the SRA Indemnity Insurance Rules;

(iv)

the SRA is not satisfied that the applicant intends to practise in the capacity of an RFL in accordance with Rule 3 of the SRA Practice Framework Rules; or

(v)

the SRA is not satisfied that the applicant is a fit and proper person to practise as an RFL.

(c)

A person who has been reinstated to the register under paragraph 12 of Schedule 14 to the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990 is to be treated as entitled to practise as a member of his or her home legal profession.

2.5

The granting of a practising certificate or registration free of conditions under regulation 2 does not prevent the SRA subsequently imposing a condition in accordance with regulation 7.