The New Zealand Law Society has commissioned an independent review of the regulatory framework governing legal services to examine the regulation and representation of legal services in Aotearoa New Zealand, including the structure and functions of the Law Society. This review has been described as a ‘once in a generation’ review.
The Independent Review will allow the Law Society to scrutinise its structure, to analyse the legislation and rules covering all lawyers and determine whether they’re fit-for-purpose.
This review was launched with two key ideas in mind:
- The ability of the Law Society to be more effective with its complaints system and to deal with a range of unacceptable behaviour, including complaints of sexual harassment and bullying.
- To ensure the statutory framework is still fit for purpose given the changes that have occurred in the legal profession and in regulatory good practice since the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act 2006 came into force.
The independent review panel is currently working on a discussion paper to be released in June, which will be followed by a series of virtual and in-person events to engage with key stakeholders.