Effective March 31, 2020, as a temporary response to the evolving COVID-19 situation, the Law Society is reducing the 12-month articling requirement to a minimum of 8 months for those students-at-law who have commenced their articling term. The Law Society will still require articling principals to complete Form A-9 confirming that their articling student is suitable to be admitted as a lawyer, as well as successful completion of the CPLED Bar Admissions Program. We anticipate that final marks for the CPLED program will be available by early May, as is consistent with past years.
For those students who commenced their articling term August 2019 or later and have concerns that they may be unable to complete their articling term even with this reduction to 8 months, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your options.
For those students articled to a court who still have an outstanding secondment that they are unable to complete, the Law Society is waiving the requirement in Law Society Rule 707(2) which requires all students articled to a court to serve not less than two months to a practising lawyer who has been approved as a principal.
If the COVID-19 situation continues to develop in such a way that it appears that a failure to reduce the articling requirement for future articling students will disadvantage firms and students, we will extend this reduction in articles to that incoming group as well. We will make a decision in this regard in the near future, and in any event, by April 15, 2020. In the meantime, if you have committed to taking on an articling student for the upcoming year, please reach out to us before making a decision to terminate the articling position. We are seeking feedback to learn about issues impacting firms in order to explore options so we can provide the flexibility firms need to get through this crisis and keep an articling student for the upcoming year.