Chapter 2 of Legal Practice Act in Effect

Department of Justice and Constitutional Development

Chapter 2 of the Legal Practice Act, with the exclusion of section 14, comes into effect on 31 October 2018.

The proclamation was published in Government Gazette 42003.

The Legal Practice Act, signed in 2014, aims to put a framework in place that facilitates the transformation and restructuring of the legal profession.

Other provisions of the act include:

•    Make the legal profession representative of the South African population;
•    Ensure that constitutional values are reflected in the profession;
•    Promote the rule of law;
•    Set up a transitional structure to oversee transformation of the legal sector;
•    Increase access to justice;
•    Cap fees that attorneys and advocates can charge;
•    Instruct lawyers to undertake compulsory community service for free; and
•    Establish the South African Legal Practice Council.

1 November 2018 is also proclaimed as the date on which Chapter 1; Chapter 3, with the exclusion of section 35(1), (2), (3) and (7) up to and including (12); Chapter 4 with the exclusion of sections 37(5)(e)(ii), 40(1)(b)(ii) and (7)(b), 41 and 42; Chapters 6 and 7; Chapter 8, with the exclusion of section 93(5); Chapter 9, with the exclusion of section 95(2); and Parts 3 and 4 of Chapter 10, of the act shall come into operation.

Meanwhile, the justice and constitutional development department has, in Gazette 42002, published Legal Practice Act regulations.

The regulations focus on the manner in which teachers of law are designated for purposes of Council, certificate to be issued by the registrar of a Division of High Court, appropriate relevant experience, manner in which application is made to court for order to pay compensation, government and other securities in which Board can invest surplus funds and matters to be included in annual report of the Legal Practitioners' Fidelity Fund Board.

The regulations are now in effect.

Sabinet Cape Town Office

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