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LIV welcomes new structure for cost of Practising Certificate fees in Victoria

LIV welcomes new structure for cost of Practising Certificate fees in Victoria

By LIV Media

Practising Certificate Uniform Laws 

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The Law Institute of Victoria (LIV) has welcomed the proposed new pricing structure for the cost of practising certificates (PC) for lawyers in Victoria.

Following the LIV’s extensive submissions and campaigning, the Victorian Legal Services Board (VLSB) has published a draft Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) for new practising certificate fees (PC Fees) regulations. Under the draft RIS, the VLSB has significantly reduced its original proposed increases for PC Fees.

The VLSB is proposing:

  • 9 different classes of PC’s; and
  • a risk-based PC Fee structure in which classes with low risk enjoy lower PC Fees compared to those with higher risk.

This follows extensive consultations with the VLSB and the release of information following the RIS process.

LIV President Belinda Wilson said: “The initial proposed increases for practising certificates for lawyers in Victoria was going to be significant and would have hurt many legal practitioners, especially those in the community sector and regional areas.

“The LIV has been campaigning against the flagged steep increases and is pleased the Legal Services Board has moved to significantly reduce the magnitude of the fee increases.

“We’re pleased the Board has listened to the LIV and moved to significantly reduce the price increases,” Ms Wilson said.

Under the new structure, the proposed cost of a ‘Principal with Trust’ practising certificate will rise from $522 to $612, up 17 per cent. This cost increase is a significant reduction from the proposed increase of 219 per cent originally considered by the VLSB before the LIV stepped in and argued against the excessive rises.

The new fee structure is expected to apply for the 2018/19 PC year.

The proposed new PC classes and costs are:

PC class

A$ cost

% change

Employees

$399

+13%

Employees (community sector)

$220

-38%

Principal with trust

$612

+17%

Principal

$427

+21%

Principal (community sector)

$220

-38%

Corporate

$240

-32%

Volunteer

$0

0%

Government

$220

-38%

Barrister

$346

-2


The LIV continues to believe that the cost of regulation of lawyers in Victoria is too high, and is calling for a broad review of legal profession regulation in Victoria.

“The LIV has provided extensive evidence to the VLSB through its submissions that the cost of regulation in Victoria is unnecessarily high,” Ms Wilson said.

“The LIV believes there should be a broader review of the Victorian legal profession’s regulatory system.”

The LIV has made a submission in response to the draft RIS, which is available here (PDF).


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