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Notifications and requirements

Before a new practice can begin operation it must meet requirements of the Australian Tax Office (ATO), the Victorian Legal Services Board and Commissioner (VLSBC), and the Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Act 2014 (the LPUL Act):

Taxation

The practice will need to contact the ATO and register for:

  • An Australian Business Number (ABN) and a Tax File Number (TFN)
  • Goods and Services Tax (GST)
  • Collection of payroll tax, if necessary
  • Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT), if necessary

The practice

To meet its regulatory obligations, the practice will need to:

  • Apply to the VLSBC for registration of a new firm
  • Obtain a practising certificate for legal practitioners
  • Attend a mandatory LIV Trust Account seminar, if you intend to have a trust account.
  • Open a trust bank account, notify the VLSBC and appoint an external auditor, unless the practice will not have a trust account
  • Obtain client authorities for a new trust bank account if merging or changing business structure and trust accounts are involved
  • Take out professional indemnity insurance
  • Establish a procedure for annual VLSBC statutory deposit adjustments

Employees

An effective organisational structure requires the practice to:

  • Set up compulsory employer superannuation payments for employees
  • Obtain a workplace injury insurance policy
  • Establish a comprehensive occupational health and safety (OH&S) policy