News releases

Online renewal process picks up the pace

The drive for online practising certificate renewals carried out by firms and individuals is gathering pace as more members of the legal profession get to grips with their mySRA account, now the system is fully operational.

Everyone seeking to renew their PC should be accessing the online system on the mySRA pages of this website, which has done away with sending in forms and cheques and uses web-based processes for both applications and payment. Three quarters of individuals on the roll have activated their mySRA accounts, 42 per cent of applications are in progress, 25 per cent of applications have been submitted and 7.5 per cent have been completed already.

The new system speeds up the process by using a significant amount of automation. This means 90 per cent of applications for an individual practising certificate can be assessed by the system and granted automatically, with no manual intervention. And around 90 per cent of online applications are now being turned round and despatched back to the individual by email in 48 hours, compared to a 28-day turnaround in previous years.

The implementation of the new system has caused difficulties. Chief Executive, Antony Townsend, said: "We appreciate and apologise for the frustrations which the introduction of the system has caused. The new system is transforming the way in which we deliver services to the profession and regulated individuals, leading to a system which will be cheaper and quicker than the old manual system, which was expensive to operate and slow.

"We are grateful for the patience of the profession in enabling us to reach our objective, which will benefit everyone."

Feedback on the process from those undertaking renewals has included that from leading UK law firm Burges Salmon LLP. Burges Salmon took part in the pilot for mySRA Practising Certificate and Recognised Body Renewal.

Emma Palmer, Risk and Practice Manager at Burges Salmon, said: "We like mySRA. As with any IT system, there were areas that could be improved, but the SRA listened to our feedback and implemented changes. We particularly like the simplicity with which we can move backwards and forwards in the form, save changes on every page and review a printed summary before submitting the final form."

Firms and individuals who are renewing their own certificate or registrations, with a first-occurring letter for their full name of A to D have until 13 February to renew, while those in band E-Z have until Tuesday 21 February to do so. It is essential that renewals are completed to these deadlines. Those who fail to meet the renewal deadlines will trigger the revocation process – this means they will receive 28 days' notice that the authority will revoke their permission to practise. This is the same procedure as that in operation when renewals were paper based. The SRA is working hard to address issues arising from the new process. This includes outsourcing some of the calls currently received by the Contact Centre and extending its opening hours up until the third week of February. The extended Contact Centre opening hours are:

  •  Monday and Friday 8.30 – 17.00 
  •  Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 8.30 – 19.00 
  •  Saturday 9.00 – 14.00 

Those with queries about this process can call the .

A troubleshooting page can be found at

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