SRA begins final consultation on qualified lawyers transfer scheme

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has launched a final consultation into the new ‘qualified lawyers transfer scheme’ (QLTS).

The SRA caused controversy earlier this year when it sought to put in place interim qualified lawyers transfer test measures while the initiative was finalised (The Lawyer, 11 February).

At the time the College of Law and others from the legal profession claimed that the SRA’s measures opposed diversity and restricted foreign lawyers’ ability to work in the UK.

Dr Jonathan Spencer, SRA education and training committee chair, said an overhaul of the QLTS was overdue. “The proposed new scheme would be based
on the same standards of knowledge, skills and ­intellect, and the same test of character and suitability, that now underpin the domestic route to qualification,” he said. “This would be fairer than the present system.”

The new consultation, which will close on 6 ­February 2009, proposes the introduction of three assessment schemes: one for UK-qualified lawyers, one for overseas lawyers and an aptitude test for those from Europe.