CPD Requirements for ACT Lawyers
ACT solicitors can earn 1 CPD unit per hour and up to 10 CPD units each year by completing LawCPD’s online CPD courses.
The current ACT Law Society continuing professional development (CPD) Guidelines for ACT practitioners were updated on 6 November 2018. Complying with the requirements of the legal CPD Guidelines is a mandatory condition for the renewal of a practicing certificate pursuant to section 47 of the Legal Profession Act 2006 (ACT).
Under the legal CPD Guidelines introduced by the ACT Law Society, a legal CPD activity must:
- be of significant intellectual or practical content and must deal primarily with matters related to the practice of law;
- be conducted by persons who are qualified by practical or academic experience in the subject covered;
- seek to extend a practitioner’s knowledge and skills in areas that are relevant to the practitioner’s practice needs.
A legal CPD activity must consist of one of the activities set out in Guideline 5 of the ACT Law Society CPD Guidelines.
LawCPD's online CPD courses are classified as an online presentation or other educational activity under the ACT Law Society CPD Guidelines. This means that ACT practitioners can earn 1 legal CPD unit per hour and all 10 legal CPD units annually by completing LawCPD’s online CPD courses.
Annual CPD Requirements
According to the ACT Law Society CPD Guidelines, ACT lawyers must earn 10 legal CPD units in every CPD year (1 April – 31 March annually). Up to 3 legal CPD units accrued by a practitioner in the period 1 January – 31 March in any CPD year may be carried over into the following CPD year, if the practitioner has completed more than 10 legal CPD units in the current year.
ACT lawyers must earn a minimum of 1 legal CPD unit from each of the following four core CPD areas:
- Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility;
- Practice Management and Business Skills;
- Professional Skills; and
- Substantive Law and Procedural Law.
Lawyers may determine which core area a legal CPD activity fits according to the context and content of the activity. LawCPD has allocated mandatory core areas to all of the online CPD courses on the LawCPD site to assist lawyers with this task.
For the CPD year ending on 31 March 2020, ACT lawyers had the option of applying for an extension of time to complete their CPD requirements until 30 September 2020. This was a special measure introduced by the ACT Law Society in response to the COVID-19 situation.
Record Keeping and Auditing
Under the ACT Law Society CPD Guidelines, lawyers must maintain their own legal CPD records. Records may take any form but must establish to the satisfaction of the ACT Law Society that the legal CPD was undertaken. Lawyers will need to retain sufficient supporting evidence of their legal CPD activities to verify completion. This may include online records, certificates, and receipts.
ACT lawyers must be in a position to confirm they have fulfilled their CPD obligations for the previous CPD year when they renew their practising certificate each year.
The ACT Law Society may conduct random audits of practitioners’ legal CPD records to monitor compliance with the legal CPD Guidelines. ACT lawyers who are selected for an audit will be required to submit their legal CPD records and supporting documentation.
LawCPD provides ACT lawyers with a personalised page (MyCPD) which tracks all their learning in real time and provides a record of all legal CPD units earned through LawCPD. Lawyers can print a copy of this page and provide it to the ACT Law Society in the event that they are audited for compliance with the legal CPD Guidelines.
LawCPD also provides printable certificates for each online CPD course completed which can be downloaded from the MyCPD page. These certificates may also be provided to prove compliance with the legal CPD Guidelines if the lawyer is audited by the ACT Law Society.
For full details of the ACT Law Society CPD Guidelines and the legal CPD requirements for ACT practitioners, visit the ACT Law Society website.
ACT barristers can earn 1 CPD point per hour and up to 6 CPD points each year by completing LawCPD’s online CPD courses.
ACT Barristers are also required to comply with the ACT Law Society continuing professional development (CPD) Guidelines for ACT practitioners. Complying with the requirements of the legal CPD Guidelines is a mandatory condition for the renewal of a practicing certificate pursuant to section 47 of the Legal Profession Act 2006 (ACT).
- of significant intellectual or practical content; and
- be relevant to the practice of law as a barrister; and
- fall under one of the types of activities set out in Guideline 5.
Annual CPD Requirements
- Ethics and Regulation of the Profession;
- Substantive Law, Practice and Procedure, and Evidence; and
- Advocacy, Mediation and other Barristers’ Skills.
Record Keeping and Auditing
Under the ACT Barristers' CPD Rules, barristers must maintain a record of their own legal CPD activities. Barristers are required to complete the CPD Record Form provided by the ACT Bar Association, and to return this form with their practising certificate renewal each year.
LawCPD provides barristers with a personalised page (MyCPD) which tracks all their learning in real time and provides a record of all legal CPD points earned through LawCPD. Barristers can use this to update their CPD Record Form and ensure this is accurate before submitting their information to the ACT Bar Association.
For full details of the Bar Association of ACT CPD scheme and the CPD requirements for ACT barristers, visit the ACT Bar Association website.