Amongst what was described as a “raft of changes to cut red tape” the SRA, following a consultation on regulatory reform concluded earlier this year, recently announced new changes to the SRA Practising Regulations allowing the SRA to refuse or impose conditions on an application for renewal of a practising certificate following a partnership entering into administration, but the individual partners not themselves (at that point) being subject to any form of insolvency event. The SRA has long held such powers over solicitors who are subject to a formal insolvency event and already has the relevant powers in relation to LLPs and companies but, ironically there was a lacuna in relation to partnerships.
On a more positive note, given all the current discussions about entry into the profession, and in an effort to encourage diversity, the SRA have also approved apprenticeship as a means of admission as a solicitor, which it is hoped will be available from September 2016 (England) (earlier in Wales).
The proposed changes now need to be considered and approved by the Legal Services Board before amendments are made to the Practising Regulations and the SRA Handbook.This information is intended as a general discussion surrounding the topics covered and is for guidance purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. DWF is not responsible for any activity undertaken based on this information.