Supporting Lawyers

Supporting Lawyers

Supporting Lawyers

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Working in the legal profession can be rewarding and challenging at the same time. It is important that we find balance in our lives as we juggle careers, family, friends and hobbies.

The Law Society has developed a number of personal support services to assist members with:

  • health and wellbeing
  • ethical advice
  • assistance with complaints to the Legal Profession Complaints Committee
  • career advice
  • mentoring
  • flexible work practices

Case Studies

See how these leading legal professionals have balanced career, family and life.

* More case studies coming soon, please check back

LawCare WA

LawCare WA

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LawCare WA offers support for the health and wellbeing of members. The initiative provides professional, confidential and free counselling and information services for members. As part of the service, members can access up to three free counselling sessions and a range of online information resources. 

LawCare WA is provided by Optum, an international organisation with their main focus on employment wellbeing and Employee Assistance Programmes. As a member of the Law Society you have complimentary access to a comprehensive range of online resources and information.

The Law Society will cover up to three sessions of counselling support. These can be delivered as face-to-face, telephone or online sessions. Additional counselling sessions and some other services are provided by LawCare WA at a cost to members.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I access LawCare WA?
Simply call 1300 361 008 reference LawCare WA. You will then be asked to provide some basic membership details if necessary.

Are my sessions confidential?
Yes, confidentiality is guaranteed. Optum is completely independent to the Law Society of Western Australia and no identifying information will be passed on.

Where does the counselling take place?
There are eight locations in the Perth metro area and more than 30 locations in regional Western Australia. LawCare WA will work with you to find the best location for counselling. After hours and Saturday appointments are available in select locations. Telephone and online counselling sessions can also be arranged.

If you need to cancel your session please provide at least 24 hours notice. Less than 24 hours notice of the cancellation results in the Law Society being charged a cancellation fee.

Are the counsellors qualified?
All counsellors are qualified psychologists or social workers with peak industry accreditation and substantial experience.

Does LawCare WA offer other services?
Yes. In addition to telephone, online and counselling services, members have access to the following:

  • Email@ssist
  • Exec@ssist
  • Finance@ssist
  • Mortgage@ssist
  • Ask the Psychologist
  • Health Steps Online
  • Managers Hotline
  • Skype counselling

To access LawCare WA services please login to your member’s dashboard.

Disclaimer: The Law Society does not warrant or guarantee the LawCare WA services provided by the third party provider and are not liable in relation to any aspect of the services they may provide to you. The Law Society shall not be liable for any damages or costs of any type arising out of or in any way connected with your use of these services.
Information is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or healthcare provider. Please consult your doctor or healthcare provider for advice about a medical condition.

Employee Relations Advice Line

Free help for you when you need it on serious employment issues

Available from 3 January 2017

The Law Society is trialling a six month arrangement with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Western Australia whereby members can access a team of industry experts within the CCIWA Employee Relations Advice Centre, free of charge, for telephone advice on a range of human resources and employee relations issues relating to:

  • Wage rates
  • Award and agreement interpretation
  • Performance management and termination
  • Equal opportunity, bullying and harassment
  • Employee minimum entitlements
  • Unfair dismissals

The telephone advisory service is available to Law Society members from 8am to 5pm, Monday to Thursday and 8am to 4pm on Friday. The phone service is closed on weekends and public holidays.

Contact (08) 9365 7660
Employee Relations Advice Line flyer

Where assistance beyond the telephone advice is required, the CCIWA Employee Relations Consultancy team can offer support and representation at your cost. This service is not included as part of the Law Society’s LawCare WA programme. Service provided by CCIWA.

WA Bar Association Referral Service

WA Bar Association Referral Service

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Assistance with Complaints to Legal Profession Complaints Committee

The Western Australian Bar Association Referral Service was established by the Bar Association to provide advice to practitioners who are the subject of complaint to the Legal Profession Complaints Committee and the State Administrative Tribunal.

A register of silks and senior juniors who are prepared not to charge to advise practitioners is maintained by the Bar Association.

The scope of the assistance provided without charge under the Referral Service is usually limited to consideration of the relevant papers  and the provision of advice in conference as to the practitioner’s problem.

In some circumstances, the barrister advising the practitioner may also be prepared to provide additional assistance such as assisting the  practitioner with correspondence with the Legal Profession Complaints Committee, representation for the purposes of conferral with the Legal Profession Complaints Committee and representation in proceedings before the State Administrative Tribunal.

Where additional assistance is provided, what, if any, fee arrangements are to be put in place is a matter for the practitioner and the barrister to discuss and agree.  In some circumstances the barrister may be prepared to act without charge or to agree a reduced fee for the provision of the additional services.

In recent times the calls on the resources of the Referral Service have been extensive.

While any practitioner facing a complaint from the Legal Profession Complaints Committee is encouraged to contact the Referral Service and all appropriate efforts will be made to provide assistance, practitioners facing a complaint from the Legal Profession Complaints Committee should also give consideration to alternatives to the use of the Referral Service, such as seeking advice directly from a barrister or other senior practitioner with whom the practitioner has an existing relationship or, particularly in a serious case, engaging appropriate legal representation in the conventional way.

The Referral Service is administered by the Vice President of the WA Bar Association, who may be contacted through the Executive Officer, Debbie Cole, at Francis Burt Chambers on (08) 9220 0477.

It is not necessary to be a member of the Law Society of WA to use the Referral Service.  The Referral Service is available to all members the profession.

Disclaimer: The Law Society does not warrant or guarantee the work undertaken by any firm or individual listed or provided and is not liable in relation to any aspect of legal services they may provide to you.

Senior Advisors Panel

Senior Advisors Panel

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The Senior Advisors Panel provides practitioners with access to experienced colleagues. Members of the Panel have indicated their willingness to be available to discuss professional conduct and ethical issues. All discussions are conducted on a confidential basis.

Guidance given by members of the Senior Advisors Panel does not constitute legal advice. There is no lawyer/client relationship unless specifically agreed between the practitioner seeking assistance and the member of the Senior Advisors Panel.

Members of the Senior Advisors Panel can be contacted direct. Alternatively, practitioners seeking assistance can telephone the Law Society on (08) 9324 8600 for a referral to a panel member with relevant expertise.

Disclaimer: The Law Society does not warrant or guarantee the work undertaken by any firm or individual listed or provided and is not liable in relation to any aspect of legal services they may provide to you.

Find a panel member

Health and Wellbeing

Health and Wellbeing

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To make the most of life it is important to maintain a healthy body and mind. Being resilient in the face of life’s inevitable changes and setbacks will help greatly in your relationships with friends and family, as well as in a working environment.

Looking after your health and wellbeing

Many legal practitioners have jobs that involve significant levels of stress, with long hours or a highly competitive workplace that impact on their health and wellbeing. Psychological distress is a legitimate health problem that has disproportionately affected the legal profession in the past, but there are a range of clinical and professional services that can provide assistance.

Through LawCare WA members of the Law Society can access online resources to assist with life, family and relationships; living healthy; financial wellbeing; work and career.

For emergency psychiatric assistance, contact the Department of Health’s Mental Health Emergency Response Line.

Reciprocal Services

Reciprocal Services

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The Law Society has joined with the Law Society of the ACT, Law Institute of Victoria, Law Society of South Australia, Law Society of Tasmania, Law Society of NSW and Queensland Law Society in offering reciprocal services to members. Below are the full details of the Reciprocal Services Arrangement together with the specific services available under each law society arrangement.

Reciprocal Services Arrangement

1. Definitions

  • ‘home law society’ means the law society to which the visiting member has full membership;
  • ‘host law society’ means the law society in the jurisdiction in which the visiting member is staying;
  • ‘listed services’ are those services listed under clause 3;
  • ‘visiting member’ means a person who has full membership to an Australian law society and is staying in the jurisdiction of another law society for one month or less between 1 January and 31 December of that year.

2. Terms of the arrangement

  • This arrangement applies where the home law society and the host law society have both agreed to the arrangement. Law societies that have agreed to the arrangement are listed under clause 4;
  • On request, the host law society will provide to a visiting member any listed service that it ordinarily and currently provides to its own members;
  • Listed services are to be provided to visiting members on the same basis as they are provided to full members. For instance, if a member is entitled to the service for free, a visiting member will also be entitled to that service for free. If a member must pay a fee for the service, a visiting member must pay the same fee;
  • Law societies will provide the identification details of members and visiting members to other law societies and / or to the Project Officer of the Conference of Law Societies as arranged by Chief Executive Officers / Executive Directors for the purposes of administering this agreement;
  • Exemptions:
  • Any law society may exempt a specific service from the operation of this agreement at any time
  • An exemption becomes effective on notification to the Chief Executive Officer or Executive Director of all other Australian law societies
  • Notification may take place via email.

3. Listed Services

  • The following direct advice:
  • advice given during the complaints process
  • ethics advice
  • legal advice
  • practice management advice
  • advice on trust accounts
  • information technology advice
  • legal costs advice
  • counselling, including access to LawCare
  • Access to law society library facilities and research assistance.
  • Continuing legal education and continuing professional development:
  • offered to members only
  • offered to members at a discount.
  • Specialist Accreditation programme.
  • Legal Secretarial training programme.
  • Mediation services.
  • The following employment services:
  • locum service
  • Employment Award advice
  • solicitor referral service
  • Access to members-only sections of the law society’s website if temporary access can be easily granted.
  • Use of meeting rooms, visiting solicitor offices and dining and lounge facilities.

4. Law societies that have agreed to this arrangement

  • Law Institute of Victoria (notified 1 July 2005)
  • Law Society of the Australian Capital Territory (notified 28 July 2005)
  • Law Society of South Australia (notified 21 September 2005)
  • Law Society of Western Australia (notified 21 July 2005 , confirmed 2 October 2005)
  • Law Society of Tasmania (notified 10 March 2006)
  • Law Society of New South Wales (notified 23 May 2006)
  • Queensland Law Society (notified 24 October 2006)

Services Available Under the Arrangement

1. Law Institute of Victoria Services Available Under This Arrangement

  • Advice given during the complaints process.
  • Ethics advice.
  • Practice management advice.
  • Legal costs advice.
  • Access to library facilities and researcher assistance.
  • Continuing legal education offered to members only and also members’ discount.
  • Locum service.
  • Employment advice.
  • Solicitor referral service.
  • Temporary access to members’ only website.
  • Temporary access to meeting rooms.

2. Law Society of the ACT Services Available Under This Arrangement

  • Access to the usual complaints advice and a Members’ Adviser should the visitor have a complaint lodged against them during their stay.
  • Ethics and trust accounting advice of the kind usually provided to members by the Professional Standards Director and Accountant.
  • Access to Senior Counsellors and Relationships Australia.
  • Members’ rate on CLE.
  • The opportunity to be listed as a practitioner for the purposes of public referrals.
  • Access to meeting and LAB rooms on an occasional basis (when available).

3. Law Society of South Australia Services Available Under This Arrangement

  • Advice services in the areas of ethics, legal costs, practice management and trust accounts.
  • LawCare services.
  • Counselling (Personal and Professional Advice Panel).
  • Continuing Professional Development.
  • Access to Law Society of South Australia library facilities.
  • Specialist Accreditation program.
  • Solicitor Referral Service.
  • Use of meeting facilities.

Law Society of South Australia reciprocal services are available only to current members of participating “home” Societies or Bars who:

  • will be in South Australia for less than three months accumulatively in the financial year
  • are willing to allow the Law Society of South Australia to verify their membership of the reciprocal home Society or Bar
  • will not transfer the Law Society of South Australia’s services and benefits to non-members.

4. Law Society of Western Australia Services Available Under This Arrangement

  • LawCare Service.
  • Senior Advisors Panel.
  • Continuing Legal Education.
  • Practice advice.
  • Use of meeting facilities.

Law Society of Western Australia reciprocal services are available only to current members of participating “home” Societies or Bars who:

  • will be in Western Australia for less than three months accumulatively in the financial year
  • are willing to allow the Law Society of Western Australia to verify their membership of the reciprocal home Society or Bar
  • will not transfer the Law Society of Western Australia’s services and benefits to non-members.

5. Law Society of Tasmania Services Available Under This Arrangement

  • Advice given during complaint process (Member Advisor Service).
  • Ethics advice.
  • Advice on trust accounts.
  • Access to a counselling service.
  • Access to law library facilities.
  • Continuing legal education at member rates.
  • Member access to website.
  • Use of meeting rooms, visiting offices and video conferencing facilities.

6. Law Society of New South Wales Services Available Under This Arrangement

  • Advice given during the complaints process.
  • Ethics advice.
  • Telephone advisory service.
  • Practice management advice.
  • Advice on trust accounts.
  • Legal costs advice.
  • Counselling (LawCare).
  • Access to Library facilities.
  • Continuing legal education offered to members only and also members’ discount.
  • Locum service.
  • Solicitor Referral Service.
  • Access to the visiting solicitors room, subject to availability.
  • Printroom, on a charged basis.
  • Dining room.

7. Queensland Law Society Services Available Under This Arrangement

  • Advice given during the complaints process.
  • Ethics advice.
  • Practice management advice.
  • Advice on trust accounts.
  • Legal costs advice.
  • Access to law society library facilities and research assistance.
  • Continuing legal education and continuing professional development offered to members only and offered to members at a discount.
  • Specialist Accreditation program.
  • Legal Secretarial training program.
  • Mediation services.
  • Locum service.
  • Employment award advice.
  • Solicitor referral service.
  • Access to members-only sections of the law society’s website if temporary access can be easily granted.
  • Use of meeting rooms, visiting solicitor offices and dining and lounge facilities.

Note: QLS will not release identification details for QLS members for the purposes of administering the agreement. Please contact the Project Officer if there are any administrative difficulties arising from this.