In Queensland, a small number of expert lawyers have been recognised by the Queensland Law Society (“QLS”) as Accredited Specialists in their particular area of law. The QLS presently recognises 11 areas of specialty, namely personal injury law, workplace relations law, commercial litigation, family law, criminal law, property law, business law, immigration law, mediation, succession law and taxation law.
There are more than 13,000 lawyers in Queensland and yet there are only a little over 500 Accredited Specialists, which means that less than 4% of lawyers in Queensland have been approved as Accredited Specialists. This is because it is extremely difficult to become an Accredited Specialist and only those with a high level of competency and knowledge are recognised.
In order to become an Accredited Specialist, a Solicitor must have worked in that area of law for at least 5 years after having been admitted as a Solicitor. They must also achieve high marks in three (3) separate assessments, namely a written exam, a mock client interview (with an actor throwing all sorts of complicated questions at them) and a take home assignment.
Of those that have the courage to undertake the Accredited Specialist course, believing they have what it takes, many still fail to pass. It is a difficult and time consuming process but a very rewarding one in the end. If you have an Accredited Specialist representing you, you can rest assured that you are receiving nothing but the best advice from a true leader in their field.