IMPACT Justice wants Continuing Professional Education for lawyers

Members of the legal fraternity could soon be required to undergo continuing professional education training after they have been admitted to the bar.

The matter was discussed here last week at a meeting of the Technical Advisory group on legal education and the profession of the IMPACT Justice Project.

Continuing Professional Education has long been a requirement for doctors who want their licenses renewed.

Currently, Jamaica is said to be the only Caribbean nation with such a requirement for lawyers.

Regional Director Velma Newton said IMPACT Justice wants all CARICOM countries to have continuing legal profession education for attorneys.

“It is important because some lawyers graduate and they don’t do any update courses to update their skills and knowledge going forward. It’s very important because the world is changing, the types of issues they have to deal with are changing, the whole environment in which they operate is changing and therefore they should keep themselves abreast of new developments in the law and new  ways of dealing with developments in the law,” Newton said.

Ms. Newton said the legislation is currently in the draft stage. She’s hopeful that the OECS sub-regional grouping could implement the legislation as a bloc.

The meeting also discussed the implementation of a disciplinary committee, to include lay persons, to hear cases against lawyers.

Improved Access to Justice in the Caribbean (IMPACT Justice) is a Canadian-government sponsored project aimed at improving access to justice in the Caribbean.