Annual Practising Certificate Fee consultation survey launched
The Law Society has launched its member survey on the Practising Certificate Fee (PC fee) for 2021/22.
The survey continues the consultation on the PC fee and business plan which began on 10 May and has already involved proactive discussions with groups of members to get their feedback.
As a response to the challenges solicitors and firms have been facing due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Law Society of England and Wales reduced the amount we collected in 2020/21 by £3m to £28.5m.
We propose to maintain our share of the overall PC fee collection at the same level of £28.5m for 2021/22.
“Representing the views of the profession has never been more important, given the ongoing implications of the pandemic and Brexit, and the unprecedented market transformation and regulatory change,”
said Law Society president I. Stephanie Boyce.
“We understand the pressure that our members remain under and that is why we will keep our cost to members flat next year – this follows a 10% fee reduction in the current year.
“As we all emerge from the pandemic, we want to support more members than ever before, make the voice of solicitors stronger than ever before and the role of solicitors and the difference they make more visible than ever before.”
The Law Society generally receives around 30% of the PC fee. The largest portion (around 70%) covers the total costs of the Solicitors Regulation Authority, part of the costs of the Legal Service Board and the Legal Ombudsman, the full cost of the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal, and certain levies under the Legal Services Act.
“We want to make this our biggest and widest consultation on the PC fee and business plan yet,”
added I. Stephanie Boyce.
“We have already been in discussions with our Council, committee members and staff over the last few months to help us plan our next steps and we want to hear what the wider membership thinks of those plans.
“In addition to the survey, we have been engaging members in focus groups over the last month, concentrating on reaching groups that we don’t tend to hear from as often.
“Ensuring that our consultation helps us hear from and understand the different needs of our diverse membership is our top priority.
“Where members tell us we need to adapt our plans, we will listen and be led by what the evidence is telling us we need to do.”