Queensland Law Society

FAQs

How long is the Council election term?

Members are elected to Council for a period of two years beginning 1 January of an even-numbered year and concluding 31 December of an odd-numbered year.

 

When does Council meet?

Council is scheduled to meet seven times a year, approximately every six weeks. Council usually meets for half a day at a time (1pm – 5pm) and usually on a Thursday. The meeting schedule for the year is set the preceding December.

In addition, Council often holds a strategy workshop during the year and there can be ad hoc telephone meetings called at short notice to manage urgent business.

 

How much time does a councillor spend on QLS business?

The workload of councillors can fluctuate significantly from week to week, depending on meetings, events and the business of Council. It is not uncommon for a councillor to spend between two and five days per month on their duties.

While the President undertakes the majority of representative and public speaking duties on behalf of QLS, from time to time other councillors are asked to represent and/or speak for the Society at member, district law association and other profession-related events. Councillors receive many invitations to QLS and profession-related events during the year – although attendance at most is not compulsory.

Councillors tend to also sit on at least one other QLS committee, and sometimes two or three. The President, Deputy President, Vice President, Immediate Past President and two other councillors appointed by Council constitute the Executive Committee. Councillors also comprise the Finance and Risk Committee, and Governance Committee, and at least one councillor is required to sit on each of the following:

  • Committee of Management
  • Professional Conduct Committee
  • Practice Management Course Committee
  • Continuing Professional Development Committee
  • Specialist Accreditation Board.

Councillors who, before election, were appointed members of other QLS committees such as policy committees, the Ethics Committee or the Proctor Editorial Committee, often continue to sit on those committees as well.

See the role descriptions for more information.

 

Who can nominate or vote?

Only those who are full members on the Roll of Electors as of 9am AEST Monday 4 September 2017 can nominate and vote. To ensure you are on the Roll and that your details are up to date, please contact 1300 367 757 or email records.

You will be ineligible to nominate if you:

  1. are of impaired capacity as defined in the Powers of Attorney Act 1998;
  2. are an insolvent under administration;
  3. have been convicted of a serious offence, as defined in schedule 2 to the Legal Profession Act 2007;
  4. in the five years prior to the election, have been convicted of two offences under the Legal Profession Act 2007 or any regulation made under that Act; or
  5. in the five years prior to the election, have been found to have committed an act of unsatisfactory professional conduct or professional misconduct.

See rule 29 of the Legal Profession (Society) Rules 2007.

 

How do I vote?

Email – you will receive an email which will invite you to click on a link to vote online.

The 2017 QLS Election will be hosted by BigPulse, a web-based online service provider.

BigPulse will send members on the Roll of Electors a link via their nominated email address to vote electronically. Emails will be sent from the domain name mail1.bigpulse.com which currently uses IP addresses: 209.15.228.130 and 5.44.17.248.

If you have not received your email invitation to vote please:

  • ensure your system has not routed the email to another location such as a junk folder;
  • consult with your IT support provider to add BigPulse to your Safe Senders List or to check quarantined emails;
  • contact elections@qls.com.au for further assistance. 

Voting form – for full members who do not have an email address registered with us, we will send a voting form by post.

 

Can I nominate for more than one position?

Yes. If you are eligible to nominate you may nominate for one or more of the available positions:

  1. President
  2. Deputy President
  3. Vice President
  4. Councillor

 

What skills and experience do nominees need for presidential roles?

The President is effectively the ‘chair of the Board’. In line with best practice corporate governance, the role of the chair is one of leading, facilitating and encouraging, rather than directing. A good chair will ensure the Council is providing leadership and vision, and working in a constructive partnership with the CEO and executive team. Nominees for presidential roles are expected to have some understanding or experience of the operation of boards and the role of the chair, although additional training and support are provided by QLS.

The President elect and Deputy President elect are strongly encouraged to attend the AICD Company Directors’ Course prior to commencing their terms, and to complete the assessment during their terms. QLS will fund the President-elect and Deputy President elect’s completion of the course.

The President’s role includes significant public speaking opportunities, including speeches at judicial inaugurations and QLS conferences and events, presentations to parliamentary committees and media interviews and statements. QLS provides support to the President and Deputy President, including media and public speaking training, but nominees should be equipped for the scope of public speaking responsibilities associated with the role.

 

As a regional practitioner, can I nominate?

QLS encourages practitioners from outside Brisbane to consider nominating for councillor and presidential roles. We support regional councillors by funding travel and accommodation to enable councillors to attend Council meetings and major events in person wherever possible, and conducting committee and other meetings by phone and web links.

Councillors from regional areas often have significant leadership roles in their communities and may be requested by the president to represent QLS at local events.

 

How do you suggest I go about winning votes?

Each candidate is to provide to QLS their photo and a statement of no more than 150 words setting out:

  1. their service to the legal profession or service to the community (or both);
  2. the area of law in which they practise; and
  3. any special interests that the candidate has, whether inside or outside the legal profession.

Each candidate’s photo and profile will be displayed on the QLS website from 20 September 2017 in the order drawn by the returning officer in accordance with r35(2) of the Rules and members will be directed to these profiles when considering voting. Outside this, please see our QLS election media protocol for rules and ideas for campaigning.

 

Can I obtain member details from QLS so I can contact members?

No. In keeping with privacy legislation, we are unable to release member data.

 

When do I start and stop campaigning?

You can start campaigning as soon as you receive confirmation from QLS that your application for candidacy is accepted and can continue until the close of voting at 4pm AEST Monday 16 October 2017.

Please note that nominations close 4pm AEST Tuesday 19 September 2017.

What are the differences between the “election period”, “nomination period” and the “publication period?”
The election period includes the entire election process starting from the open of nominations on 4 September 2017 and concluding at the end of voting at 4pm AEST 16 October 2017.

The nomination period is the period in which an eligible candidate submits their nomination to stand for Council. During this time the Society will assess each candidate’s nomination, advise the candidate whether their application for candidacy has been accepted and, within two business days of receipt of an accepted nomination, the Society will publish the names of eligible candidates on the QLS website in the order of nomination receipt. The nomination period begins 4 September 2017 and finishes at 4pm AEST on 19 September 2017.

The publication period is the period in which QLS will publish the names, biographies and photos submitted by eligible candidates on the QLS website in the order drawn by the returning officer in accordance with r35(2) of the Rules . QLS election communications will invite members to view these profiles. The publication period begins 20 September 2017 and finishes at 4pm AEST on 16 October 2017.

 

When are election results determined?

The day voting closes – soon after 4pm AEST on Monday 16 October 2017.

 

When will the election results be announced?

From Tuesday 17 October 2017.

 

What is the best way to find out more about the 2017 QLS Council Election?

To allow all members across Queensland to participate, an information session will be livestreamed via Facebook Live at 11:30am on 14 August 2017. A video of the session will be uploaded to the website from 18 August 2017.