Spotlight on law societies’ AGMs – Uniform rules for the profession and Legal Practice Bill

February 1st, 2014

The four sets of separate rules of the provincial law societies have been combined into one uniform set of rules under the auspices of the Law Society of South Africa (LSSA). In order to be implemented, the uniform rules must be accepted by members of each provincial law society at an AGM.

A discussion on the rules took place at all the AGMs. Before the AGMs, a representative task team of the LSSA constituent members prioritised the finalisaton of a uniform set of rules for consideration at the various law society AGMs. If approved, the uniform rules would serve as a basis for both certainty about national uniformity and as a working document for the future Legal Practice Council. The following decisions regarding the rules were taken at the various annual general meetings:

  • Cape Law Society: Rejected the draft rules in toto and referred them to a subcommittee for reconsideration.
  • Free State and KwaZulu-Natal law societies: Adopted the uniform rules.
  • Law Society of the Northern Provinces: Adopted the rules except for some rules dealing mostly with accounting aspects.

A joint meeting of law societies’ representatives was due to be held at the end of January 2014 to deal with the outstanding issues.

Legal Practice Bill

A discussion on the Legal Practice Bill also took place at the various AGMs. In mid-November 2013 the Bill passed the second reading debate and was sent on to the National Council of Provinces (NCOP). There were 227 votes in favour of the Bill, 81 against and one abstention. Provincial public hearings on the Bill were due to be scheduled by the NCOP in February 2014.

This article was first published in De Rebus in 2014 (Jan/Feb) DR 19.



De Rebus