COVID-19 support package FAQs

Question

Answer

Can or is QLS delaying the renewals processing period?

No. QLS is bound by the Legal Profession Act 2007 (LPA) and the rules made under the LPA and cannot change the dates.

Can or is QLS extending the end of year trust accounting compliance

No. QLS is bound by the LPA and cannot change trust account compliance requirements.

Will QLS offer free CPD with Membership?

Yes, our members will be able to access free CPD offerings during FY2020-21.

Can Lexon base my PI levy on forecasted revenues for FY21, rather than in arrears?

No, Lexon bases levies on the past years’ gross fee income (GFI) and the subsidy of the FY2020-21 levy is assisting in that regard.

If your GFI in calendar year 2020 falls, this will be reflected in the calculation of the FY2021-22 levy.

Has QLS arranged for premium funding though the banks?

 

Yes, via Westpac for loans $5,000 and over. The interest rate is 2.95% (reduced from 4% last year) and now payable over 12 equal monthly instalments (was 10 last year).

Will QLS guarantee the premium funded loans?

No. Premium funding is an individual liability.

Can QLS accept lump sum payments for membership?

Yes, but the lump sum must be the correct amount for all items being purchased.

How has QLS funded the support package to the profession?

QLS, is a not for profit organisation, but has accumulated cash reserves primarily from membership renewals, events and practicing certificates. QLS has released all available cash reserves to support the profession via the full membership fee and PC subsidy, and following actuarial advice and with the support of the Lexon Board, has released capital from the QLS law claims levy fund to subsidise insurance premiums.

Can QLS or Lexon delay the PI insurance period?

No, QLS and Lexon are bound by the Legal Profession Act and the Rules made under the LPA and cannot change the dates.

If I am made redundant during the course of the year can I have my membership refunded?

Refunds during the course of the year are not available, but if you are made redundant prior to the annual renewals period ending – 30 June, you can receive a free membership. However, if you are suffering financial hardship you may make an application for a further reduction in the membership fee.

How has the subsidy to the insurance levies been achieved?

 

We are providing a $5M subsidy towards the levies payable by practitioners for the upcoming FY2020-21 insurance year through the law claims levy fund.  The effect of this subsidy will be to reduce, on a one off basis, the levy rates to 20% below what was payable in FY2019-20 for the compulsory part of your insurance.   

Whilst this does not mean each practice will necessarily pay 20% less than in FY2019-20 (due to movements in GFI, EMR participation or claims loadings) it does mean we can expect the amount your practice will be levied will be approximately 20% lower than it would otherwise have been.

Will the annual Accredited Specialist fee be reduced?

No. It remains unchanged.

Is the PMC fee being reduced?

No. It remains unchanged.

Will the Associate Membership fee be reduced?

Yes. It will reduce to the same amount as the subsidised full membership fee.

What is the QLS credit card limit for renewals payment?

It is $15,000, double the amount of last year.

Is QLS able to extend the FY2019-2020 CPD year?

Yes, and has done so until 30 June 2020.

Can I get employment law advice regarding the impacts of COVID-19?

Yes, call our Ethics and Practice Centre on (07) 3842 5843 to see if you are eligible.

Why was QLS membership reduced by 50%?

We have offered a support package to the whole of the profession to assist in keeping the doors of law firms open and keep Queenslanders in jobs. QLS has a membership, licensing and regulatory function. We have focused on reducing the direct costs of practice for the profession. In total, the combined savings of membership fee, PC fee and insurance levy subsidy are significant. QLS has used all available reserve funds able to be allocated to each of membership and practising certificate fees for this year to support the whole profession.

Can I access financial support from the Queensland Law Foundation?

Yes, to see if you are eligible for financial support via an interest free loan, contact the Foundation via their website: http://www.qlf.com.au/



Can I pay my QLS membership in instalments?

No. The Society Rule 2005 does not allow payment in instalments. However, if you are suffering financial hardship you may make an application for a further reduction in the membership fee.

Can I pay my PC fee in instalments?

No. The QLS Administration Rule 2005 does not allow payment in instalments. However, if you are suffering financial hardship you may make an application for a further reduction in the PC fee.