How to Apply for a Practitioner of Foreign Law Permit

To apply to practise foreign law in BC, submit to the Law Society:

  • a completed Practitioner of Foreign Law Permit Application;
  • two Certificates of Character (Practitioner of Foreign Law Permit). The certificates must be completed by members of the Law Society of BC or of the legal profession in a jurisdiction in which you are qualified to practise law;
  • documentary evidence that you are a member of the legal profession in one or more foreign jurisdictions, are not suspended or disbarred and have not otherwise ceased, for disciplinary reasons, to be a member of a governing body or of the legal profession in any foreign jurisdiction (Law Society Rule 2-18(2)). In most cases, an official certificate of good standing issued from the law society or governing legal body of which you are a member will be adequate. The certificate should detail your professional standing history, including any disciplinary proceedings, outstanding complaints or bankruptcy proceedings;
  • documentary evidence that you carry professional liability insurance or a bond, indemnity or other security that is comparable in form and amount to that required of BC lawyers Rule 3-39(1), and that specifically extends to services rendered by you while acting as a practitioner of foreign law in BC; and
  • a non-refundable permit application fee.

Original documented evidence in a language other than English must be submitted with an English translation authenticated by a qualified translator.

In the permit application, you must undertake that, if permitted to act as a practitioner of foreign law in BC, you will submit to the jurisdiction of the Law Society of BC and will comply with the Legal Profession Act, Law Society Rules and Code of Professional Conduct for BC.

The permit application includes a "declaration of applicant." The declaration must be made before a person described in s. 63 of the BC Evidence Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 124.

Permit validity

A permit issued to a practitioner of foreign law is valid for one year from the issue date (Rule 2-18(5).

A permit will be invalid if you:

  • are suspended under Part 4 of the Legal Profession Act and Part 4 of the Law Society Rules (as a result of disciplinary proceedings or a failure to meet standards of financial responsibility or upon conviction for an indictable offence); or
  • cease to comply with any of the requirements imposed under Part 2 of the Law Society Rules.

Renewing your permit

You must apply to the Law Society for a renewal of your practitioner of foreign law permit before the permit expires (Rule 2-22). The renewal application must include:

  • a completed permit renewal application form, including a written consent for release of relevant information to the Society;
  • evidence that you continue to comply with the requirements of Rule 18(2); and
  • the permit renewal fee.