Character and suitability

We treat your integrity to be a solicitor as seriously as your knowledge and skills. If you do not meet our requirements for character and suitability, we will not admit you as a solicitor.

On 25 November 2019, our Assessment of Character and Suitability Rules replaced the Suitability Test.

Under these rules, you no longer have to disclose character and suitability issues at the start of your training. You now only need to disclose them when you apply to be a solicitor.

However if you want to check any potential issues before then, you can complete this form at any time. We are not bound, in any subsequent application for admission, by any decision made at this stage.

Whenever you tell us about an issue, it is up to you to provide any evidence necessary so we can decide on your application. The nature of the issue will dictate what you need to give us.

You can check what information is needed by reading our rules.

You should not submit your application until you are able to give us all the required information.

Disclosure and Barring Service

Everyone applying for their character and suitability assessment will need to complete the screening process before submitting their application.

What you can expect from us

Once we have all the information we need, we will consider your application.

We will look at it carefully, requesting any missing information and then preparing a report with our decision. You will be given the opportunity to respond to the draft report, if we are considering refusing your application.

Timescales

We aim to decide on an application within six months.

We will usually decide within 30 days, once we have all the information we need.

Withdrawing an application

You can withdraw your application at any time before we decide.

Consequences of failing to submit information with your application

If you do not submit the relevant information within the time limits provided by us, your application is likely to be refused.

If it is refused, you will have 28 days to apply for a review of the decision.

Please note that, if your application is refused, you may only make another one where there has been a material change in your circumstances relevant to your application.

To find out what information you need to submit with your application, please read our rules relating to the issue you are disclosing.

Appeals

You can apply for a review of our decision within 28 days of the date we notify you of the decision.

Under section 41(3) of the Solicitors Act 1974, you can appeal to the High Court if you are not satisfied with any appeal decision we take.

Publication

We publish applications outcomes in line with our guidance on publishing regulatory and disciplinary decisions.