New Trust Account Regulations now in effect

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Please note, the Society’s new Trust Account Regulations came into effect on January 1, 2013. They are available for your reference in the Regulation area of the website, as Section 10 of the Society’s current Regulations under the Legal Profession Act

Council approved the new Trust Account Regulations on November 23, following a substantial period of work by the Trust Account Regulation Review Working Group, and consultation with the legal profession. In doing so, Council repealed the old Part 10 of the Regulations relating to trust accounts and replaced it with the new Regulations 10.1 to 10.7, which constitute the new Part 10. Council also amended Reg. 1.1.1(v), (bb), (cc) and (dd) and deleted Reg. 1.1.1(ff). 

The fundamental principles of the Trust Account Regulations remain the same. It is a privilege and significant responsibility for lawyers to be permitted to hold client funds and property, and lawyers are held strictly accountable by the Society for properly dealing with all client funds and property held in trust, as part of its mandate to protect the public.  

Most of the revisions were designed to simplify the Regulations and provide further clarity and additional definitions. For more detailed background and analysis, see the Working Group’s November 7, 2012 memo to Council, available on the Council materials webpage, in the “Documents” posted for the November 23 meeting.

Council also resolved that in 2013, lawyers and law firms with a fiscal year end for trust accounts other than December 31 may report to the Society on compliance with either the old or new Regulations, or a combination thereof.