The Law Society of Hong Kong is proposing the introduction of a new entrance examination, which would ensure that newly admitted solicitors studying different postgraduate law courses have all met the same academic standards on admission.
Reform of legal education in Hong Kong was reported here in the ICLR newsletter in 2017, in comments by Hong Kong Law Society Chief Executive Heidi Chu.
The current regime requires a solicitor candidate to complete the Postgraduate Certificate in Laws (PCLL), after a qualifying law degree, and to undertake a formal training contract in order to qualify. Under the current qualification system PCLL providers (of which there are only 3 universities) currently enjoy self-accreditation status and are empowered to set their own admission criteria and conduct and mark their own examinations, subject to the PCLL benchmarks issued by the Law Society. The new examination would add a further stage onto the qualification after the PCLL and would allow the Law Society to impose a common standard across all new entrants to the profession.
The target date for implementation of the new examination is be the 2024/25 academic year.