The mandatory continuing legal education requirements are different for barristers and solicitors in Tasmania. Click on the links below to find out more about the rules for:
Tasmanian solicitors can earn 1 CPD point per hour and up to 5 CPD units each year by completing LawCPD’s online CPD courses.
The Law Society of Tasmania introduced a mandatory continuing legal education scheme for Tasmanian practitioners which commenced on 1 April 2012. Complying with the requirements of the continuing legal education scheme is a mandatory condition for the renewal of a practicing certificate pursuant to section 56 of the Legal Profession Act 2007 (TAS).
Under the Law Society of Tasmania’s Continuing Professional Development Scheme (Practice Guideline No. 4), a legal CPD activity is defined in clause 2.4 and includes:
attending or preparing material for a seminar, workshop or conference;
completing a course at a tertiary institution relevant to law or legal practice;
viewing or listening to, or preparing material for, a multi-media or web-based program or recorded material;
publishing or editing an article in a legal or non-legal publication; or
attending or preparing material for a seminar, workshop, conference or discussion group conducted within a legal practice.
LawCPD’s online CPD courses meet the requirements set out in clause 2.4(c) of the Law Society of Tasmania legal CPD Scheme, as a multi-media or web-based program. This means that Tasmanian practitioners can earn 1 legal CPD unit per hour and up to 5 legal CPD units annually by completing LawCPD’s online CPD courses.
In March 2020, the Tasmanian Law Society announced that it would lift the cap on online activities, including multimedia or web-based programs. This means that Tasmanian practitioners can claim an unlimited number of CPD units for completing LawCPD’s online courses for the 2019/2020 CPD year.
Annual CPD Requirements
According to the Law Society of Tasmania legal CPD scheme, practitioners must earn 10 CPD units in a CPD year. Prior to March 2020, the CPD year ran from 1 April to 31 March annually. In March 2020 the Law Society of Tasmania amended the CPD scheme to change the CPD year to 1 May to 30 April each year.
Tasmanian practitioners must earn a minimum of 1 legal CPD unit from each of the following four mandatory competency areas:
LawCPD has classified all of its online CPD courses into the different mandatory competency areas to assist with compliance.
Due to the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the Law Society of Tasmania extended the 2019/2020 CPD deadline to 30 April 2020. As noted above, the CPD year now runs from 1 May to 30 April annually.
Record Keeping and Auditing
Under the Law Society of Tasmania's continuing legal education scheme, the Law Society may conduct an annual random audit of practitioners’ legal CPD records to monitor compliance with the continuing legal education scheme (see clause 5.2). This means it is important for practitioners to keep a record of their completed legal CPD for audit purposes.
LawCPD provides practitioners 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. Practitioners can print a copy of this page and provide it to the Law Society of Tasmania in the event that they are audited for compliance with the continuing legal education scheme.
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 CPD scheme if the practitioner is audited by the Law Society of Tasmania.
For full details of the Law Society of Tasmania’s continuing legal education scheme and the CLE requirements for Tasmanian practitioners, visit the TAS Law Society website.