Free trial Sign-up

Please leave your name and email and we'll be in contact shortly.



Contact Number


Please complete the sum:        
19 + 9 =

A quick reference guide to the new CPD regime for solicitors

The implementation of the SRA’s new Continuing Competence regime came into effect from 1st April 2016. From 31st October 2016 the SRA will no longer require solicitors to undertake the mandatory 16 hours of Continuous Professional Development (CPD). The new regime requires solicitors to reflect on their own performance and identify training and development needs, encouraging them to plan a tailored solution relevant to their area of expertise.

The changes also remove the need to complete the Management Stage Course 1 requirement from 1st April 2015.

What does this mean in practice?

Until 31st October 2016 practitioners have 2 options;

  • follow existing CPD requirements
    • Undertake 16 hours CPD
    • Complete a declaration that CPD requirement has been met for years 14/15, 15/16
  • from 1st April onwards adopt the new approach
    • Meet current regulatory requirement to deliver proper standard of service
    • Reflect on quality of practice and address learning and development
    • Comply with competence statement
    • Complete annual declaration that they have considered their training needs and taken measures to maintain their competence

There is no requirement to advise when you move to the new regime and all solicitors will automatically transfer on 1st November 2016 if they haven’t already.

Competence Statement

The competence statement is made up of three parts:

Statement of solicitor competence: This defines the continuing competencies expected from all solicitors and the steps they need to take to maintain these standards. www.sra.org.uk/competence

Threshold standard: As the competence statement is generic, the threshold standard sets out the expected level of performance and ability in your area of practice. www.sra.org.uk/threshold

Statement of legal knowledge: This sets out 13 core competencies that solicitors are required demonstrate at the point of qualification. www.sra.org.uk/knowledge

Principle 5 of the SRA Handbook requires you to provide a proper standard of service to your client. The statement itself identifies a proper standard of service and defines effective performance broken down into 4 core competencies;

  • A Ethics, professionalism and judgement
  • B Technical legal practice
  • C Working with other people
  • D Managing themselves and their own work


Practitioners will need to:

Demonstrate reflection on their abilities with reference to the competence statement and record learning and development needs: https://www.sra.org.uk/solicitors/cpd/tool-kit/identify-learning-development.page

Plan and record how you will address these needs https://www.sra.org.uk/solicitors/cpd/tool-kit/planning-learning-development.page

Address and record your activity: https://www.sra.org.uk/solicitors/cpd/tool-kit/address-learning-development.page

  • what you did
  • how it was related to ensuring your competence
  • what you learnt
  • when the activity was completed

Complete the annual declaration: https://www.sra.org.uk/solicitors/cpd/tool-kit/resources/annual-declaration.page


The benefit to solicitors under the new regime is that training need not be prescriptive; indeed the competency statement encourages individuals, firms and training providers to look closely at the benefits their training provides and brings a focus to training that is relevant to your role.

The SRA outline a number of ways firms can use the competence statement in practice https://www.sra.org.uk/solicitors/cpd/tool-kit/resources/use-competence-statement.page

  • integrate Competence Statement into existing performance management systems;
  • introduce a performance management system
  • integrate into existing competence frameworks
  • develop a competence framework

Training can also include work shadowing, mentoring and case file discussions.

As a training provider ETSOS continues to provide innovative ways for you to undertake relevant training to your role across a range of subjects. Contact David Opie (davidopie@etsos.co.uk) today to enquire about our training options 01524 220001

  • In-house training
  • Regional seminars
  • Webinars
Visit our Training page to view our available courses Visit our Events page to view our upcoming courses


The most important thing to remember is to record ALL your activity, from reflection and planning, through to undertaking the training. See below templates provided by the SRA to support your efforts

Development plan template https://www.sra.org.uk/documents/solicitors/cpd/development-plan.doc

Development record template https://www.sra.org.uk/documents/solicitors/cpd/development-record.doc

There is a very good summary provided by the SRA here https://www.sra.org.uk/solicitors/cpd/tool-kit/resources/summary-guide.page

We greatly appreciate the efficient service ETSOS provides. We know that the time between placing an order and receiving the EPC and floor plans will be minimal, and that if there is any kind of query it will be dealt with usually within the hour. Keep up the good work.   Kyle Blue – PF&K

The client and experts view...

  • thumb1
Latest newsspeech Bubble

System Maintenance

Please be aware that we are performing some system maintenance this weekend. We don’t anticipate that this will result in any downtime of our services, but we apologise if it does cause any inconvenience

Government Confirms New Regulations and Qualifications for Estate Agents Will Happen

The government has accepted the proposals of the Regulation of Property Agents (RoPA) with wide-spread consequences for estate and letting agents.

The proposals reach right into the heart of the industry to affect regulation, training and licensing.



Fears of Tougher Regulations and Unjust Costs Mount Ahead of Government Announcement

Estate Agents are waiting for the big reveal on Monday after Lord Best has admitted some firms could close when the regulation of property agents (ROPA) makes its recommendations to the Government early next week.

Lord Best, the chair of ROPA, has already outlined the working group’s desire for more regulation.


[NEWSFLASH] Agent Charged DOUBLE Over AML Registration Mistake

Property Industry Eye (PIE) has highlighted the case of an estate agent who has fallen foul of HMRC and been charged double.

On 4th April, with plenty of time to spare, Hayman-Joyce renewed their annual HMRC registration. They paid the fee and thought they’d ticked all the boxes.


Compliance in a Box: The Natural Remedy for Your AML Headache

Estate agents around the country are realising that the new 5th AML Directive goes deep. There’s a lot of work involved in becoming compliant. And the penalties for non-compliance, either deliberately or through confusion, are severe. (more…)

newsletter sign-up

Sign up for our e-newsletter

Email Address

trial sign-up

Click the Apply button opposite to use our software on a trial basis...

  • etsosnews

  • etsosnews

  • Linkedin Twitter Facebook
    This site uses cookies. Find out more about this site’s cookies.