News release

SRA consults on potential regulation of CILEX students and paralegals

We have launched a consultation on rule changes needed to allow the potential regulation of non-authorised Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEX) members.

The suggested arrangements explain the rules that would apply to CILEX paralegals and students should CILEX's proposal to re-delegate regulation to us go ahead.

CILEX published a consultation on its re-delegation proposals during 2023, with our own consultation on the changes we would need to make to take on regulation of authorised CILEX members launching shortly after. Details of feedback from our first consultation exercise have now been published.

The newly launched consultation does not revisit issues already covered by our earlier exercise. Instead it focusses on non-authorised CILEX members, an issue CILEX raised following the conclusion of our first consultation.

CILEX approached us about the potential re-delegation in 2022. Our Board agreed that taking on the regulation of authorised CILEX members has potential to deliver tangible benefits to consumers of legal services and the wider public.
Paul Philip. Chief Executive of the SRA, said: 'We remain open to the idea of regulating CILEX members due to the benefits such a move would potentially bring to the legal landscape, especially in terms of making it easier for the public to understand and navigate. As we did with our earlier consultation regarding authorised CILEX members, these proposals outline an approach which would allow for the continued regulation of CILEX paralegals and students, something CILEX asked us to specifically consider.'

Our previous consultation outlined how all CILEX members would be governed by a separate Code of Conduct, which is aligned with the standards and regulations for solicitors, but is also mindful of differences in role and context.

A distinct CILEX route to authorisation would also be retained, while the cost of regulating authorised CILEX lawyers would be fully recovered from the practising certificate fees of CILEX members.

The consultation on potential arrangements for non-authorised CILEX members runs until 15 May 2024, with all stakeholders invited to have their say. Feedback will be considered by the SRA Board in June.

If we and CILEX agree to proceed with re-delegation, an application would need to be made to the Legal Services Board, which would need to agree to the relevant changes to both organisations' regulatory arrangements.

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