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New LPA a year away

Briefs

Cite as: (2004) 78(4) LIJ, p.18

The new Legal Practice Act (LPA), which will alter the current structure of the regulation of the legal profession, will come into effect on 1 July 2005.

A spokesman for state Attorney-General Rob Hulls said that the legislation would be introduced into Parliament in the spring 2004 session and would begin on the first day of the 2005/06 financial year.

A 1 July 2005 start would mean that the new LPA would come into effect almost five years after Mr Hulls called for a review of the current LPA in October 2000.

Under the new Act, the Legal Practice Board and Legal Ombudsman position will be abolished and a Legal Services Commissioner established under the state government’s reforms for regulation of the legal profession.

The commissioner will become the single point of entry for complaints against lawyers.

The commissioner will have the power to investigate and prosecute lawyers for misconduct and mediate disputes between lawyers and clients, and will also be able to delegate some investigations to the Law Institute and Victorian Bar.

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