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Issued: Wednesday, 1 July 2015
NSW Attorney General Gabrielle Upton today welcomed the start of reform which harmonise regulation and create a seamless legal services market across NSW and Victoria. Ms Upton said the start of the Legal Profession Uniform Law and Rules was a significant achievement more than two decades in the making. “The days of lawyers, businesses and consumers wading through rivers of red tape to access or deliver legal services are over. From today, there is a seamless legal services market stretching from the Bass Strait to Byron Bay. This will deliver benefits to lawyers, law firms, businesses and most importantly consumers,” Ms Upton said. The Legal Services Council and Commissioner for Uniform Legal Services Regulation will together oversee the scheme’s operation. The Chair of the Legal Services Council the Hon. Michael Black AC QC said the scheme is based on sound principles, high ethical and professional standards.“I think it is particularly important to note existing regulatory and professional bodies in Victoria and NSW will continue to be responsible for the day-to-day regulation of the legal profession,” Mr Black said. The Commissioner for Uniform Legal Services Regulation and the CEO of the Legal Services Council Dale Boucher said the scheme brings arrangements for the legal profession in line with contemporary expectations. “Anyone who is paying for a service, whether it’s a global business or someone walking off the street into a local law firm, expects the same professional obligations to be applied no matter where they live,” Mr Boucher said. Ms Upton added the new scheme paves the way for a common Australian legal market. “NSW and Victoria have done the hard yards. I would urge the other States and Territories to stop sitting on their hands and embrace reform. Only when there is a national legal market, will all the benefits of this reform be realised,” Ms Upton said. For more information go to: www.legalservicescouncil.org.au