The SRA Handbook is no longer in effect. It was replaced by the SRA Standards and Regulations on 25 November 2019.

SRA Handbook

Introduction to Authorisation and Practising Requirements

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Version 17 of the Handbook was published on 12/08/2016. For more information, please click 'History' Above

Introduction to Authorisation and Practising Requirements

This section of the Handbook contains the following sets of rules:

  • SRA Practice Framework Rules;
  • SRA Authorisation Rules;
  • SRA Practising Regulations;
  • Solicitors Keeping of the Roll Regulations;
  • SRA Training Regulations 2014 - Qualification and Training Provider Regulations;
  • SRA Training Regulations 2011 Part 3 - CPD Regulations;
  • SRA Admission Regulations;
  • SRA Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme Regulations;
  • SRA Higher Rights of Audience Regulations;
  • SRA Quality Assurance Scheme for Advocates (Crime) Regulations; and
  • SRA Suitability Test.

These rules must be read in conjunction with the Principles. The Principles underpin all aspects of practice, including applications for authorisation or approval by firms and individuals and achievement of training requirements.

The desired outcomes that apply to authorisation and training are that:

  • clients and the general public remain confident that legal services provided by our regulated community will be delivered to the required standard and in a principled manner;
  • firms and individuals provide the SRA with sufficient information to enable the SRA to make appropriate judgements concerning whether to authorise, or continue to authorise, any firm or person;
  • only those individuals and firms who/that meet the SRA's criteria for authorisation (including the requirements to be suitable and capable of providing legal services to the required standard) are authorised;
  • firms are managed in such a way, and with appropriate systems and controls, so as to protect the public and safeguard the reputation of the legal profession;
  • solicitors, regardless of the route by which they qualify, have been educated and trained to a standard that clients, the public, the profession and the judiciary properly expect;
  • providers of training are authorised and monitored to an appropriate standard;
  • solicitors have demonstrated their competence to exercise rights of audience in the higher courts;
  • solicitors have achieved the standard of competence required of advocates conducting criminal advocacy;
  • solicitors demonstrate this competence through independent assessment;
  • solicitors act so that clients, the judiciary and the wider public, have confidence that this has been demonstrated.