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Practising on own account as a barrister and solicitor

Practice by a barrister and solicitor on own account is governed by s30 of the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act 2006 (“the Act”), regulations 12-15 of the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act (Lawyers: Practice Rules) Regulations 2008, (“the Practice Rules”)  and the Trust Account Regulations 2008, made under the Act.

You must be qualified to practise on own account as a barrister and solicitor if you:

  • wish to operate as a sole practitioner
  • wish to become a partner in a law firm
  • wish to become a director or voting shareholder of an incorporated law firm
  • are an in-house lawyer and wish to enter into a contract for services with a non-lawyer
  • are a consultant and wish to provide regulated services by way of a contract for services.

If you wish to practise on own account as a barrister and solicitor, the Law Society must be satisfied that you are a suitable person to do so, having regard to:

  • the nature and extent of your legal experience
  • how you intend to practise on own account (for instance, in sole practice, as a partner in a law firm, or otherwise)
  • the areas of law in which you intend to practise
  • any other matters that the Law Society considers relevant.

More information

A free webinar is available from NZLS CLE that provides information about practising on your own account. It covers topics such as:

  • practising alone
  • joining or setting up a partnership
  • joining or setting up an incorporated law firm
  • applications made under regulation 12A — special circumstances, which apply when returning to NZ after practising overseas or to work after a period of parental leave.

The webinar may be useful if you are considering your options but unsure of the process or if you meet the criteria. You can access the webinar on the NZLS CLE website.

Last updated on the 22nd August 2019