Renewing a practising certificate - Victorian Legal Services Board + Commissioner

Renewing a practising certificate

Practising certificates are in force from the date of grant through to 30 June the following year. When an existing practising certificate is renewed, the new practising certificate will commence on 1 July of that year.

If you are an Australian legal practitioner (i.e. you hold an Australian practising certificate) at the time of making the application, you are eligible to apply for renewal of an Australian practising certificate if you reasonably intend that Victoria will be your principal place of practice in Australia.

The renewal application must be accompanied by –

(a) the prescribed fee for the certificate; and

(b) the required contribution to the Fidelity Fund (if any).

If you wish to renew your practising certificate for the year commencing 1 July, you must apply by 30 April of that year to avoid paying a late lodgement surcharge.

If you have a practising certificate on 30 April, an application for renewal that is made between 1 May and 31 May will incur a surcharge of 25% of the prescribed fee. If the application is made during June, the surcharge will be 50% of the prescribed fee.

If you have a practising certificate on 30 June, and you apply for a new practising certificate between 1 July and 30 September, you must pay a surcharge of 200% of the prescribed fee, unless your application is accompanied by a statutory declaration stating:

  • that you have not engaged in legal practice since the end of the previous financial year;
  • that as at the end of the previous financial year you did not intend to engage in legal practice for at least the first 3 months of the current financial year; and
  • the reasons why your intention has changed.

The Victorian Legal Services Board may refund all or part of a surcharge paid if it considers that there are special circumstances.

A fee or surcharge is not payable for an Australian practising certificate that authorises the holder to engage in legal practice only as a volunteer at a community legal service or otherwise on a pro bono basis.

Practising Certificate administration is now online

The Board’s LSB Online service now handles all practising certificate administrative matters.

Please visit LSB Online to:

  • apply for a new practising certificate
  • change your information or employment details
  • apply to renew your practising certificate
  • advise the Board that you will not be renewing your practising certificate.

If you are applying for your first practising certificate, you will need to register a new account with LSB Online. Your Practitioner Number is your user ID. If you do not know your Practitioner Number, please contact the Board via the details below.

The Board has produced two fact sheets to guide lawyers and their employers through the process of renewing practising certificates:

For assistance with using LSB Online, please contact the Board’s Practitioner Services Team on 03 9679 8000 or email registry@lsbc.vic.gov.au.

Last modified February 25, 2016.