Law Society of Scotland consults on stronger partnership training
More robust training to become a partner in Scottish law firms could be introduced by the Law Society of Scotland.
The Society is launching a consultation today, Monday 19 May, asking existing partners, solicitors and new lawyers a range of questions about training requirements for would-be partners, following an independent review of the current compulsory practice management course.
Recommendations include the introduction of four short mandatory assessed modules in addition to the existing one-day training course for would-be partners. These would be delivered online.
Neil Stevenson, Director of Representation and Professional Support at the Law Society of Scotland, said: "We want to ensure that solicitors who are preparing for or thinking about partnership are well equipped for the role and have all the facts about what being a partner in a law firm in Scotland encompasses so they are making an informed choice.
"The idea behind the review and consultation is to support firms and individuals when they are taking the step from employee to owner by ensuring they know the responsibilities and liabilities which come with it.
"Earlier this year we employed an external consultant to undertake an initial review - speaking to people who had undergone the current course, tutors and a range of solicitors in practice, as well as looking at other jurisdictions and professions, and carrying out a small survey.
"The review suggested that as well as attending a mandatory course in the year after becoming a partner, solicitors should complete four short online modules before they are made partner, and that these modules should be assessed. There is also a recommendation of some additional requirements for those likely to immediately become cash-room partners, which is often the case if someone is setting up on their own, and a suggestion of an ongoing training requirement for that group.
"We would like to hear from a cross section of the profession on these recommendations, which aim to maintain the high standards partners in Scottish firms must work to - and which ultimately give clients good protection."
To respond to the consultation, please go to www.lawscot.org.uk/practicemanagement to complete the online survey by closing date of 28 August.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION: Please contact Suzy Powell on 0131 476 8115 or Val McEwan on 0131 226 8884