Community legal services - Victorian Legal Services Board + Commissioner

Community legal services

This page contains information for community legal services about requirements under the Legal Profession Uniform Law. See also Community legal service employees and volunteers.

Core requirements

A community legal service (CLS) must employ one or more supervising lawyers to be responsible for the legal services provided. The supervising lawyer must be an Australian legal practitioner who holds a practising certificate as a principal of a law practice.

Notification requirements

A CLS should notify the Board of any change to information recorded on the Register of Legal Practitioners and Law Practices, including:

  • name
  • address for service; and
  • name of each supervising legal practitioner for the service.

Changes should be made using the Notification of change of information – law practice form.

Professional indemnity insurance (PII)

The Uniform Law requires that the CLS be insured for any legal services provided. Where the CLS is a corporation, it must hold an approved insurance policy and that policy must cover the CLS itself and each of the Australian legal practitioners carrying out work at the CLS. Where the CLS is not a corporation, it must hold a policy that covers each of the Australian legal practitioners carrying out work at the CLS. For further information, see Professional Indemnity Insurance requirements for community legal services.

The insurance must be obtained before the service commences to engage in legal practice in this jurisdiction.

A CLS may be exempted from the requirements to hold an approved insurance policy. [R 82, General Rules]

Trust Money and Trust Accounts

The Act regulates the receipt, handling of and accounting for clients’ money by law practices including community legal services.

For further information see Trust money and Trust accounts.

Last modified December 21, 2016.