Government legal officers and practising certificates
24 May 2013
Do you think you are a government legal officer? Do you need a practising certificate?
The Legal Profession Act 2007 exempts practitioners from holding a local practising certificate if the person is “authorised to engage in legal practice under a law of the Commonwealth” or is “a government legal officer engaged in government work”. [s23(1)]
A “government legal officer” is defined to include a person “whose employment or appointment in any of the following includes or may include engaging in legal practice:
(a) a department of this jurisdiction, the commission or any agency prescribed under a regulation;
(b) a department of government of the Commonwealth”. [s12(1)]
The following are the only agencies prescribed:
- the Australian Government Solicitor
- the Board of Architects of Queensland
- the Board of Professional Engineers of Queensland
- the Building and Construction Industry (Portable Long Service Leave) Authority
- the Commission for Children and Young People and Child Guardian
- the Crime and Misconduct Commission
- each Hospital and Health Service under the Hospital and Health Boards Act 2011
- the Office of the Information Commissioner
- the Office of the Ombudsman
- the Office of the Queensland Parliamentary Counsel
- the parliamentary service
- the Queensland Building Services Authority
- the Queensland Treasury Corporation
- the Queensland Water Commission
- the Residential Tenancies Authority
- the Workers’ Compensation Regulatory Authority.
If you are a legal practitioner employed by an agency that is not listed and are not employed directly by a department or the Legal Services Commission, you are required to hold a practising certificate.
If you are unsure whether you require a practising certificate, please contact Records and Information Services, Queensland Law Society, 1300 FOR QLS (1300 367 757).