The New Zealand Law Society | Te Kāhui Ture o Aotearoa is calling for feedback on new draft guidance designed to support the legal profession to comply with new rules governing the behaviour of lawyers.
The amended rules clarify the standards of behaviour expected of lawyers when engaging with clients, colleagues and others, with an emphasis on tackling bullying and harassment. Consultation on the guidance document is open from the 1st of June until the 16th of July. With the new rules coming into place on the 1st July.
The guidance is split into five sections:
- reporting misconduct and unsatisfactory conduct
- the clear expectations on law practices to have policies and systems to prevent and protect employees and other people that it engages with from bullying, discrimination, harassment or violence, and a designated lawyer to report to the Law Society about this conduct
- support for people affected by bullying, discrimination, harassment or violence
- what to do if you are the subject of a report or complaint
- terminating instructions in the event of bullying, discrimination, harassment or violence by a client
New Zealand Law Society | Te Kāhui Ture o Aotearoa President Tiana Epati has said “This guidance is intended to be a practical tool to help law practices understand their new obligations under the rules. Bullying, discrimination, racial or sexual harassment and other prohibited behaviour have no place in any profession. Everyone has an individual part to play in securing the well-being of our legal community. We also need to ensure the public can have trust and confidence in the legal profession.”
Read more about the consultation and respond here.