Local govt to lose Law Soc seat to trainee

LOCAL government lawyers are being pitted against trainees following a recommendation to change Law Society council membership.
The membership committee has recommended to council that the number of local government representatives be cut from two to one, to make way for a young solicitor with less than two years' experience.
Local Government Group chair Bethan Evans says employed lawyers are once again being treated as sec ond-class citizens. “We are extremely angry about it really.
“It's just ad hoc and inappropriate, particularly as there's huge growth in the employee solicitor sector.”
Susannah Haan, chair of the Trainee Solicitor Group (TSG), comments: “It's a pity that it looks like we are being pitted against each other. We still want a seat – ideally without having to take it away from anybody else.”
The Law Society charter's rule that only trained solicitors can sit on the council has frustrated the TSG's hopes of a seat, so it is lobbying for a newly qualified representative instead.
Membership committee chair Margaret Anstey says employed lawyers are “appreciated”, but the number of seats is capped at 75.
Only the insurance, commerce and industry, and European Union seats are up for review.
Although commerce and industry also has two seats, it represents a larger sector – 6.2 per cent – of practising certificate holders than local government – 3.8 per cent.