The LSRA is currently undertaking two significant pieces of research at the request of the Minister for Justice.

Research on Barriers for Solicitors and Barristers and Increasing Diversity

In November 2020, the Minister for Justice asked the Authority to consider the economic and other barriers faced by young barristers and solicitors and to make recommendations. The Minister has stated that this research is part of her plan to increase diversity across the justice sector including the legal profession.

Minister McEntee has asked the LSRA to examine:

  • The remuneration of trainee barristers and solicitors
  • The other costs associated with joining each profession
  • The information available to a prospective trainee barristers and solicitors on available masters and solicitors firms
  • The information available on the terms and conditions available, and how they are selected
  • Any other barriers faced by young barristers and solicitors, including the ability to take maternity leave

The Minister asked that the LSRA pay particular attention to equity of access and entry into the legal professions, and the objective of achieving greater diversity within the professions.

She has also asked the LSRA to make recommendations for change.

Surveys of Trainee and Practising Solicitors and Barristers

The LSRA will shortly be conducting online anonymous surveys of trainee and practising solicitors and barristers with up to seven years post qualification experiences.

Public Consultation

Following this evidence gathering exercise, the LSRA will later this year commence a public consultation and will invite written submissions. The LSRA will also consult with the professional bodies for solicitors and barristers.

Further Information 

The Minister’s press release announcing the request is available here.

Research to Consider Creation of a New Profession of Conveyancer

In February 2021, the Minister for Justice asked the Authority to prepare and submit a report considering the creation of a new conveyancer profession to increase competition in legal services.

In her request, the Minister has asked the Authority to include consideration of the following matters by way of making any relevant findings and recommendations –

  • Background and context including 2006 Report of the Competition Authority on Solicitors and Barristers and stakeholder mapping.
  • An analysis of comparable international models and experience
  • An economic analysis of how Ireland compares to other jurisdictions in terms of the cost and the speed of conveyancing, particularly for domestic home purchases, including any particular barriers in Ireland.
  • Intervening developments of relevance including in policy, law, regulation and conveyancing technologies.
  • A full consideration of how digital technology, which is rapidly evolving, could transform the manner, the cost and the speed of carrying out a conveyance, and how digitalisation should inform a decision to establish a conveyancer profession.
  • Profile of the scale of provision and value to the economy of conveyancing services and activities in the State.
  • The path through which such services are currently provided and at what transactional cost.
  • Analysis of any barriers to new providers and to greater competition in this area.
  • Outcome of section 34 public consultations and views of key stakeholders including those who avail of conveyancing services.
  • The pros and cons of introducing a new profession of conveyancer and models for its regulation (including entry requirements) with protections for consumers.
  • Potential benefits, if any, to private consumers and enterprise and to national competitiveness of a new profession of conveyancer.
  • Any other matters that the Authority considers appropriate.

The Legal Services Regulatory Authority has undertaken to submit its report to the Minister within 18 months.

Forthcoming Public Consultation

The LSRA intends to conduct public consultations as part of this research, which will also involve international comparative analysis and economic analysis. Further updates will be made available on this website.

Further Information 

The Minister’s press release announcing the request is available here.