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South Africa
NATIONAL LEGISLATION OVERVIEWS
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Legal Practice Act, No. 28 of 2014

Long title


To provide a legislative framework for the transformation and restructuring of the legal profession in line with constitutional imperatives so as to facilitate and enhance an independent legal profession that broadly reflects the diversity and demographics of the Republic; to provide for the establishment, powers and functions of a single South African Legal Practice Council and Provincial Councils in order to regulate the affairs of legal practitioners and to set norms and standards; to provide for the admission and enrolment of legal practitioners; to regulate the professional conduct of legal practitioners so as to ensure accountable conduct; to provide for the establishment of an Office of a Legal Services Ombud and for the appointment, powers and functions of a Legal Services Ombud; to provide for a Legal Practitioners’ Fidelity Fund and a Board of Control for the Fidelity Fund; to provide for the establishment, powers and functions of a National Forum on the Legal Profession; and to provide for matters connected therewith.

Table of contents

SECTION TITLE

PREAMBLE
TABLE OF CONTENTS
CHAPTER 1. DEFINITIONS, APPLICATION AND PURPOSE OF ACT
1. Definitions
2. Application of Act
3. Purpose of Act
CHAPTER 2. SOUTH AFRICAN LEGAL PRACTICE COUNCIL
Part 1. Establishment, powers and functions of South African Legal Practice Council
4. Establishment of Council
5. Objects of Council
6. Powers and functions of Council
7. Composition of Council
8. Membership of Council
9. Chairperson and deputy chairperson of Council
10. Term of office of members of Council
11. Termination of office
12. Removal from office
13. Vacancies in Council and filling thereof
14. Dissolution of Council
Part 2. Operation of Council
15. Meetings of Council
16. Quorum and procedure at meetings of Council
17. Decisions of Council
18. Committees of Council
19. Executive officer and employees of Council
20. Executive committee of Council
21. Delegation of powers and assignment of functions of Council
22. Finances, expenditure and accountability of Council
23. Establishment of Provincial Councils
CHAPTER 3. REGULATION OF LEGAL PRACTITIONERS AND CANDIDATE LEGAL PRACTITIONERS
24. Admission and enrolment
25. Right of appearance of legal practitioners and candidate legal practitioners
26. Minimum qualifications and practical vocational training
27. Practical vocational training
28. Assessment of practical vocational training
29. Community service
30. Enrolment with Council
31. Cancellation and suspension of enrolment
32. Conversion of enrolment
33. Authority to render legal services
34. Forms of legal practice
35. Fees in respect legal services
CHAPTER 4. PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT AND ESTABLISHMENT OF DISCIPLINARY BODIES
36. Code of conduct
37. Establishment of disciplinary bodies
38. Procedure for dealing with complaints of misconduct and procedure to be followed in disciplinary hearing
39. Disciplinary hearing
40. Proceedings after disciplinary hearing and sanctions
41. Appeal against conduct or finding of disciplinary committee
42. Monitoring by Legal Services Ombud
43. Urgent legal proceedings
44. Powers of High Court
CHAPTER 5. LEGAL SERVICES OMBUD
45. Establishment of Office of Legal Services Ombud
46. Objects of Ombud
47. Appointment and independence of Legal Services Ombud
48. Powers and functions of Ombud
49. Term of office of Ombud
50. Acting Ombud and filling of vacancies
51. Staff, finances and accountability of Office of Ombud
52. Annual report
CHAPTER 6. LEGAL PRACTITIONERS’ FIDELITY FUND
Part 1. Establishment of Fund and founding provisions
53. Continued existence of Attorneys Fidelity Fund
54. Revenue of Fund
55. Liability of Fund
56. Limitation of liability of Fund
57. Purpose and application of Fund
58. Legal Practitioners’ Fidelity Fund Account
59. Financial year of Fund
60. Fund exempt from certain tax and insurance laws
Part 2. Operation of Fund
61. Establishment of Board
62. Composition of Board
63. Powers and functions of Board
64. Membership of Board
65. Chairperson and deputy chairperson of Board
66. Vacancies in Board and filling thereof
67. Term of office of members of Board
68. Termination of office
69. Removal from office
70. Meetings and resolutions of Board
71. Committees of Board
72. Certificate in respect of liabilities of Fund and investment of money in Fund
73. Annual review by actuary
74. Contributions to Fund by legal practitioners
75. Audit
76. Re-insurance
77. Provision of insurance cover and suretyships
Part 3. Claims against Fund
78. Procedure for instituting claims against Fund
79. Actions against Fund
80. Subrogation
81. Claims against future revenue of Fund
82. Indemnification in respect of certain acts
83. Preservation and disposal of records and documents in possession of Board
CHAPTER 7. HANDLING OF TRUST MONIES
84. Obligations of legal practitioner relating to handling of trust monies
85. Application for and issue of Fidelity Fund certificates
86. Trust accounts
87. Accounting
88. Trust money and trust property of trust account practice
89. Court may prohibit operation of trust account
90. Appointment of curator bonis in respect of trust account
91. Rights of banks in respect of trust accounts
CHAPTER 8. GENERAL PROVISIONS
92. Recovery of costs by legal practitioners rendering free legal services
93. Offences and penalties
CHAPTER 9. REGULATIONS AND RULES
94. Regulations
95. Rules
CHAPTER 10. NATIONAL FORUM AND TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS
Part 1.
96. National Forum on Legal Profession
97. Terms of reference of National Forum
98. Powers and functions of National Forum
99. Membership of National Forum
100. Chairperson and deputy chairperson National Forum

101. Term of office
102. Termination of office
103. Removal from office
104. Vacancies in National Forum and filling thereof
105. Meetings of National Forum
106. Quorum and procedure at meetings of National Forum
107. Decisions of National Forum
108. Finances, expenditure and accountability of National Forum
Part 2.
109. Rules and regulations
Part 3. Abolition of Fidelity Funds of former TBVC States and transfer of assets, rights,
110. liabilities and obligations to Legal Practitioners’ Fidelity Fund
111. Transitional provisions in relation to existing Attorneys Fidelity Fund Board of Control
112. Transitional provisions in relation to qualifications
113. Transitional provisions relating to Fidelity Fund certificates
114. Existing advocates, attorneys, conveyancers and notaries
115. Persons entitled to be admitted and enrolled as advocates, attorneys, conveyancers or notaries
116. Pending proceedings
117. Transitional provisions relating to existing law societies
118. Interpretation of certain references in laws
Part 4.
119. Repeal and amendment of laws, and savings
120. Short title and commencement
Sch.  SCHEDULE (LAWS REPEALED OR AMENDED BY SECTION 119) [s19]

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