Law Society Act, 1996 - Amendments (2023)

Law Society Act, 1996 - Amendments (2023)

The Law Society Act, 1996 (“Act”) came into force on January 1, 1997. At that time, this constituted a completely new Act which replaced the Law Society Act of 1973. In 2008, the Law Society of New Brunswick worked on the first set of amendments to the Act. These amendments came into force on July 1, 2009. 

In 2019, we began the process of reviewing the Act for possible amendments in view of the fact that it had been 10 years since the last amendments to the Act came into force. Between September 13, 2019, and June 23, 2023, Council reviewed eight (8) reports dealing with possible amendments to the Act.

We are pleased to submit this report which contains proposed amendments to fifty-seven (57) sections of the Act. Some of the amendments are only of a housekeeping nature.  However, there are other proposed amendments that required policy decisions from Council. In addition, the report contains proposed amendments to the Act in order for the Law Society to fulfill its role pertaining to increasing access to justice following the receipt of the Access to Justice Task Force report.

A copy of the report can also be found at the following link: Law Society Act, 1996 Amendments (2023)

In the December newsletter, we provided our members with an update with respect to the proposed amendments to the Law Society Act, 1996.

We indicated that a list of additional proposed amendments from the present Act since the release of the September 8, 2023, report, and the comments that we received from members can be found in a Memorandum to Council dated November 16, 2023.

We also indicated that on November 24, 2023, Council approved the additional proposed amendments to the Act.

In addition, we indicated in the December newsletter that since November 24, 2023, we have made the following additional minor amendments to the amending Act:

• correction to paragraph 17(2)(z);
• minor corrections/amendments to the French version of section 30, subsection 42(5), paragraphs 48(8)(a) and 98(9)(c);
• minor amendments to paragraph 17(2)(r), subsection 17(5), section 34, paragraph 34(b) and section 38 (by striking out “professional corporation” and substituting “law firm” because “professional corporation” is now part of the definition of “law firm”.

We provided a link to an updated version of the Act to Amend an Act Respecting the Law Society of New Brunswick that the Law Society intends to file with the Legislative Assembly. However, the document that was found at that link was not the correct version.  A copy of the correct updated version of the Act to Amend an Act Respecting the Law Society of New Brunswick can be found here.