Queensland Law Society

QLS referral service

How to apply to be on the referral list

Placement on the referral list in a particular area of law does not represent that a practitioner specialises in that area of law. Rather, it is an indication that the practitioner has a substantial involvement in that area of law.

To be eligible for inclusion on the referral list a practitioner must be a member of the Queensland Law Society (QLS) and have practised as a legal practitioner for at least five (5) consecutive years. If a practitioner has practised interstate for part of the five (5) consecutive year period the practitioner will be eligible for inclusion on the referral list for federal areas of law (such as family law, immigration/citizenship law and taxation law) but will not be eligible for inclusion for other areas of law unless the practitioner has practised as a legal practitioner for a period of six (6) consecutive years, at least three (3) of which must have been in Queensland.

Application form

To be included on the referral list, a practitioner must complete the application form. Applicants are required to:

1. nominate no more than three (3) areas of law

2. agree not to advertise that their name appears on the QLS referral list.

Criteria for inclusion on the referral list

Applications will, in the first instance, be considered by QLS staff. The following criteria formulated by the Council of the Queensland Law Society (“the Council”) will be applied by staff to determine whether an application is successful:

1. A practitioner who has been found guilty of professional misconduct, or unsatisfactory professional conduct, by a disciplinary body can not be on the Referral List until a period of ten (10) years has elapsed from the date of the finding.

2. Unless the PCC resolves otherwise, a practitioner in respect of whom the PCC has resolved to recommend to the Legal Services Commissioner (“LSC) that the LSC take disciplinary action, can not be on the Referral List, until the LSC determines not to take disciplinary action, or until the disciplinary action is finalised. If disciplinary action is taken and results in a finding that the practitioner has been guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct, or professional misconduct, the practitioner can not be on the Referral List until a period of ten (10) years has elapsed from the date of the finding.

3. Unless the PCC, or the Council, resolves otherwise, a practitioner, in respect of whom the LSC has determined to take disciplinary action, can not be on the Referral List, until the LSC determines not to proceed with the disciplinary action, or until the disciplinary action is finalised. If disciplinary action is taken and results in a finding that the practitioner has been guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct, or professional misconduct, the practitioner can not be on the Referral List until a period of ten (10) years has elapsed from the date of the finding.

4. Unless the PCC, or the Council, resolves otherwise, a practitioner who is the subject of any disciplinary action in another jurisdiction can not be on the Referral List, until the disciplinary action is abandoned by the relevant regulatory authority, or until the disciplinary action is finalised. If disciplinary action is taken and results in a finding that the practitioner has been guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct, or professional misconduct, the practitioner can not be on the Referral List until a period of ten (10) years has elapsed from the date of the finding.

QLS reserves the right, in its absolute discretion, to:

  • refuse any application
  • remove any practitioner from the referral list for good cause
  • take into account matters such as complaints history and any other matters of concern when considering applications, or determining whether a practitioner should remain on the list
  • ask a practitioner to provide further information in support of the practitioner’s application
  • contact the referees nominated by the practitioner to obtain relevant information.

QLS acknowledges that it is a practitioner’s right to determine whether he/she will enter into a retainer with any person referred by the Society.

Enquiries should be directed to Vicki Moore at info@qls.com.au or telephone no 1300 367 757.