SRA Handbook

Appeals, and suitability

Version 20 of the Handbook was published on 1 October 2018. For more information, please click "History" above.

Part 3: Appeals, and suitability

Regulation 6: Review of decisions on eligibility

6.1

Subject to regulation 4.2, if you seek to establish eligibility under regulation 2.1(d) or 5.1(b) to (d) and we refuse your application you may, within one month of receiving notification from us of any decision under those regulations, ask for the application to be reviewed.

6.2

Where you are seeking to establish eligibility (other than pursuant to Directive 2005/36/EC or the Establishment Directive) and we have:

(a)

refused the initial application on the ground that you are not suitable to be admitted as a solicitor; and

(b)

determined not to reverse that refusal on review;

you have the right, within three months of receiving notification or deemed notification from us of our decision on the review, to appeal to the High Court under regulation 3 of the SRA Admission Regulations.

6.3

Where you are seeking to establish eligibility pursuant to Directive 2005/36/EC and we make a decision in respect of that application you have the right, within four months of receiving notification or deemed notification of our decision, to appeal to the High Court under regulation 36 of the European Communities (Recognition of Professional Qualifications) Regulations 2007.

6.4

Where you are seeking to establish eligibility pursuant to the Establishment Directive and we:

(a)

fail to take a decision on the initial application and notify it to you within four months of receipt of all the relevant documents;

(b)

refuse the initial application; or

(c)

have determined not to reverse that refusal on a review;

you have the right, within three months of receiving notification or deemed notification of our decision, to appeal to the High Court under regulation 35 of the European Communities (Lawyer's Practice) Regulations 2000.

Guidance note

(i)

Deemed notification in regulation 6 is:

(a)

the date on which the communication is delivered to or left at your last notified address or is sent electronically to your last notified email address or fax number;

(b)

for recipients in the EEA or Switzerland, seven days after the communication has been sent by post or document exchange to your last notified contact address; or

(c)

for recipients outside the EEA or Switzerland, 14 days after the communication has been sent by post or document exchange to your last notified contact address.

Regulation 7: Character and suitability of prospective solicitors

7.1

As required by regulation 2.1(d), you must satisfy us as to your character and suitability to be a solicitor before we admit you to the roll.

7.2

You must apply to us for admission in writing in the prescribed form and support your application with such evidence as we consider necessary.

7.3

You may ask us to assess any issue which may cause you not to meet the outcomes of the SRA Suitability Test before commencement of the QLTS assessments. Such determinations will not prejudice our ability to take all relevant factors into account when a subsequent admission decision is taken, including the facts giving rise to the earlier determination.

7.4

We may determine on the grounds of your character and suitability that you are not eligible for admission, and refuse your application. You may make up to three further applications for eligibility to be admitted where there has been a material changes in circumstances after intervals of not less than 12 months from the final determination of your previous application.

7.5

Regulation 6.1 of these regulations gives you the right to ask us to review a refusal under regulation 7.4. You also have the right to appeal to the High Court under regulation 3 of the SRA Admission Regulations against our decision to refuse to admit you as a solicitor on the ground of suitability.

Guidance note

(i)

For further information please consult the SRA Suitability Test.

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