Queensland Law Society

Limitation of Liability Scheme

The Limitation of Liability Scheme (Scheme) is a statutory scheme, enforced by the courts, that caps the amount of damages that can be awarded against your practice. Professional Indemnity Insurance pays the claim while the Scheme caps the amount of damages that can be awarded.

To participate in the Scheme you must be a full member of QLS, hold a current Australian practising certificate, and have the benefit of the applicable insurance. Further, to gain the full benefit of the cap, all solicitors within a firm would have to be members of both the QLS and the Scheme.

Liability Caps

The Scheme provides a liability cap which is exclusive of defence costs, but aims to cap damages as follows:

  • $1.5 million - for participating members are in a law practice consisting of up to and including 20 principals where the law practice generates an income for the financial year of up to and including $10 million
  • $10 million - for
    • participating members who are in a law practice consisting of greater than 20 principals; or
    • participating members are in a law practice where the law practice generates an income for the financial year greater than $10 million
  • higher cap - subject to approval from QLS for
    • all cases; or
    • in any specified class or case

Members of the Scheme are strongly encouraged to consider their need for top up insurance to ensure that defence costs are met.

Exclusions

There are a few exclusions to which the Scheme does not apply, being:

  • ILP’s as corporate entities
  • Personal injury claims
  • Fraud, dishonesty, breach of trust
  • Part 9, division 2, subdivision C of the Land Title Act 1994 (claims under the Queensland State Government Fidelity Fund for title fraud)

Members are strongly encouraged to read the Guide to the Queensland Law Society Limitation of Liability Scheme to gain further understanding of the Scheme.

For members of the Scheme

Forms

If you wish to discuss further or require more information, please contact the Limitation of Liability Scheme Co-Ordinator on 07 3842 5908 or email capscheme@qls.com.au.