Indemnity Insurance Scheme
Law Society operates the Legal Practitioners Professional Indemnity
Insurance Scheme pursuant to s 52 of the Legal
1981. A copy of the current Scheme document is
practising certificates are issued subject to the requirement to
satisfy the insurance obligations under section 19 of the Legal
1981. That section can be satisfied in two ways:
- by participating in the Legal Practitioners Professional
- either personally making a contribution (Low Income Sole Practitioners and Barristers); or
- being employed by a law practice that has made a contribution.
- by being exempt from contributing to the Scheme, exempt practitioners are currently those who:
- are employed by a government department and only provide
legal services to that employer; or
- are employed by an entity that is not a law practice as defined by the Legal Practitioners Act 1981 and not exercising a right of private practice.
exempt practitioner who practises outside of their corporate or
government role must first make a contribution to the professional
indemnity insurance scheme and receive a certificate of insurance. If
this is not done, the practitioner’s practising certificate is
automatically suspended by operation of law. The practitioner would
then be practising without insurance and without a valid practising
certificate and may be the subject of disciplinary proceedings.
are also required to participate in the Scheme. If a practitioner or
practice employs a conveyancer, that conveyancer may be eligible for
an exemption, depending on the nature of their ordinary work. You
can download a Form D
details the eligibility criteria.
practitioners are eligible to make a reduced contribution to the
Scheme. Those practitioners are required to lodge an application and
make certain undertakings about their practice. The undertakings are
designed to ensure that all practitioners are adequately insured at
all times. Each form contains the relevant eligibility criteria. The
relevant forms are:
may wish to take out ‘top-up’ insurance to increase the amount of
cover provided by the Scheme (currently $2,000,000). There is no
requirement to use any particular insurer for this purpose, however
you are welcome to contact the Society’s brokers, Arthur J Gallagher. They are able to provide advice on, and arrange, top-up
Professional Indemnity Insurance and hold an Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL 227017). Contact
Will Laundy at Gallagher on (08) 8172 8141 for further
you have any further queries, contact the Ethics and Practice Unit at
or (08) 8229 0200.