Apply for a practising certificate
Step by step guide
Updated 1 December 2023
Who can apply
You must have been admitted to the roll.
You will be practising as a solicitor if you are involved in legal practice and:
- your involvement in the firm or the work depends on your being a solicitor
- you are held out explicitly or implicitly as a practising solicitor
- you are employed explicitly or implicitly as a solicitor or
- you are deemed by section 1A of the Solicitors Act 1974 to be acting as a Solicitor.
To help you understand the circumstances in which you might need a practising certificate, see our practising certificate guidance.
How to apply
The application form can be found under 'Start a new application' and in 'Available applications'. It is called 'Apply for a practising certificate' and will be at the top of the list.
First practising certificate
You can apply for your first practising certificate once you are admitted as a solicitor.
You will then need to renew your certificate each year before it expires on 31 October.
If you are a qualified lawyer with an SQE2 assessment exemption, you will need to demonstrate your English or Welsh language competence before applying.
Returning after a career break
If you are returning to the profession, please apply at least 30 days before you wish to start practising.
Renewing your practising certificate
For solicitors already practising, you use the same form to renew your certificate each year.
When applying, you will be asked whether you are eligible for reduced fees and if you have met our continuing competence requirements. Find out more.
Character and suitability issues
You must tell us if anything relevant to your suitability to be a solicitor has happened since you were admitted or last renewed your certificate. This includes anything that would adversely affect your ability to meet your regulatory obligations as a solicitor or to be subject to regulatory investigations or proceedings if required.
As set out in our Assessment of Character and Suitability Rules, such information may relate to issues including (but not limited to):
- criminal conduct
- behaviour which has a bearing on your integrity and independence
- education assessment offences
- financial conduct and events (see Table 2 in the Rules)
- regulatory or disciplinary findings
- health conditions.
Our rules provide more detail about the information that you must disclose to us.
Telling us about health conditions
If you have a health condition and are not sure whether you need to report it to us see our approach to health issues and medical evidence. It explains when health issues can be a regulatory concern and should be reported to us and how we deal with those that arise during investigations.
You do not need to tell us about a health condition if you are satisfied that you, and where relevant, your employer are taking appropriate steps to address the condition. And any risks it may pose to your practice as a solicitor or your ability to meet your regulatory obligations. This includes taking part in an investigation or disciplinary process.
If you are not certain that you can safely manage any risk that a health condition may pose you should let us know via email.
How to pay
You need to pay online by credit or debit card at the end of your application. We do not accept cheques, bank transfer or card payment by telephone.
Find out what fees you will pay.
We aim to process 95% of applications within 30 days. We will send you an email confirmation once your application has been processed.
You will then be able to download your certificates from mySRA. We do not issue hard copy certificates.
Log in to apply
When you are ready to apply, the link below will take you to mySRA login page. You will need your SRA number to apply.
Application for Individual Practising Certificate
Log in to mySRA to apply, go to start a new application