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Renewing your practising certificate

You must renew your practising certificate annually. The renewal process must be completed and all payments made no later than 30 June. Any practitioner who has not completed the renewal process by the close of 30 June will have their name removed from the public register.

To renew your practising certificate:

  • log into Registry using your lawyer login and password
  • complete the fit and proper declaration
  • pay fees and other charges (by credit card or by invoice to your firm/organisation or a third party)

Payment

You can print your own invoices through your lawyer login. You can choose your preferred payment method within your own organisation. Please note receipts are not issued by the Law Society; the invoice becomes a tax paid invoice upon payment.

If a firm/organisation has appointed a firm administrator, the Law Society will provide a list of all the lawyers in the organisation and the required payments once the renewal emails have been sent to the individual lawyers. If your organisation wishes to appoint a firm administrator please contact Registry.

Firm administrators are able to print off the invoices through the organisation login, by clicking on ‘Lawyer Invoices’. (Please note that only those invoices dated May in the practising year relate to the current practising certificate round.)

Processing applications

Practising certificates are being issued electronically for the first time this year.

Once you have made your declaration and payment has been received you will be able to download your practising certificate in PDF format. You are not required to print out your certificate however you should check it is available so you know the process has been completed.

Your name will appear on the public Register of Lawyers after 1 July 2017 only if the process has been completed.

If your practising certificate is not renewed

If payment is not made by 30 June you will not be able to renew your practising certificate or call yourself a lawyer. You will need to make an application for a new practising certificate. Please ensure that this is clearly communicated to whoever is attending to payment within your organisation.

New practising certificates are in force on July 1. Lawyers who have not renewed before this date are removed from the public register.

The Law Society Registry may advise the Legal Services Agency, Land Information New Zealand (LINZ), the courts and the profession of the names of lawyers known to have been in private practice and offering services directly to the public who have not renewed their certificates by the due date, and who have not advised the Law Society that they were ceasing practice.

Those who have not advised the Law Society will be in breach if they continue to practise without a valid practising certificate.

If these people subsequently apply for and are issued with a practising certificate, their names are restored to the public register. The practising certificate is effective only from the date of renewal and not from the date at which their previous certificate lapsed.

Law Society membership

Membership entitles holders to special benefits, membership of sections and member rates for NZLS CLE Ltd events. If you have previously elected to be a member this will continue (if you do not wish to be a member, please advise registry@lawsociety.org.nz). Membership is currently free and is voluntary.

Law Society sections membership

There are three specialist sections of the Law Society: Family Law Section, Property Law Section and the in-house lawyers section (ILANZ). Each section provides its members with resources and membership benefits.

If you are a current member of the Family Law Section or the Property Law Section, the renewal of your membership will be included in your practising certificate invoice. If you are not intending to renew your membership, please advise registry@lawsociety.org.nz.

There is no fee for the ordinary in-house lawyers section (ILANZ) membership. If you renewed your premium ILANZ membership at the ILANZ conference, you will not be invoiced for this. You can find information about premium memberships benefits on the ILANZ website.

If you are not currently a member of a Law Society section but wish to join or find out more, please visit the appropriate membership page:

Update the register

All lawyers should check their records on the register of lawyers and notify the Registry of any changes via an email to registry@lawsociety.org.nz.

Register display - practice options

The register of lawyers is required to show whether a holder of a practising certificate as a barrister and solicitor is:

  • in practice on own account as a sole practitioner, partner in a partnership or director of an incorporated law firm
  • an employed solicitor
  • an in-house lawyer.

There are no alternative options for the purposes of the public register.

Last updated on the 25th May 2017