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Legal practitioners in Australia are regulated by a diversity of regulators including law societies, bar associations, statutory regulators and administering authorities. Each State and Territory has legislation regulating legal practitioners who practise within its jurisdiction. However, increasingly legal practitioners are practising across State and Territory boundaries.

Since 1996 a scheme has existed in Australia through mutual recognition which has allowed lawyers certified in one jurisdiction to have their certification recognised in other jurisdictions. Such cross-border practice has however raised concerns about the existence of different regulatory rules and standards for admission in each jurisdiction. Noting these problems work commenced on harmonising the legislation to allow for consistency in procedures. The aim has been to create a true National Legal Services Market in Australia.

The National Legal Profession Model Laws Project which commenced in 2002 has seen the development of model provisions as a basis for consistent laws and rules that apply to lawyers. The National Model Bill provides the basis for a nationally uniform and consistent legislative framework for the regulation of the legal profession. All States and Territories have committed to pass legislation based on the provisions of the National Model Bill. However, not all jurisdictions have yet done so.

Over the last few years, the adoption of the model laws and the creation of a national profession have been high on the Conference of Regulatory Officers (CORO) agenda. CORO members have played an important role in both administering the national model rules as well as harmonising regulatory practices. Agreements have been reached through CORO to address such national issues as harmonising the regulation of incorporated practices, the development of national continuing professional development guidelines, the development of a national disciplinary register and the development of national regulatory protocols.

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"Please save the date for CORO 2013 to be held in Darwin from 12-13 September 2013."  

CORO 2012 was held at the Brisbane Convention and Entertainment Centre, Brisbane, Queensland on 8-9 November 2012.

To access the presentations please click here.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 March 2013 06:00