8.0 Transitional Period
8.1 A Transitional Period, as regards the issuing of Interim Practising Certificates and operation, will apply. The transitional period will last for a minimum period of three years. The transitional period will terminate after the three year period provided the number of registered Members with ‘Practicing Certificates’ reaches 50 in number. At this stage the scheme will be reviewed by the Lord President and the Scottish Ministers. At this review, the Lord President and the Scottish Ministers may:-
(a) withdraw approval of the scheme:
(b) terminate the transition period;
(c) extend the transition period. In this situation, the extension will terminate at the new review date or at the date when the number of registered members with practicing certificates reaches 50 in number, whichever is the sooner.
8.2 Interim Practising Certificate
8.2.1 On completion of the Entrance Requirements (noted at section 5.0 above) to the satisfaction of the Admissions Board the applicant will be issued with an Interim Practising Certificate and allowed to use the title ‘Member’. The Interim Practising Certificate will be issued for a period of one year.
8.2.2 While in possession of an Interim Practising Certificate the Attorney must not carry out the following:-
Ordinary Cause Actions
- Lodging any document at a court without Counsel/Solicitor having reviewed it and confirmed in writing that he is content.
- attend Court, in respect of undefended cases, without Counsel/Solicitor being present, unless instructed by Counsel/Solicitor that this requirement is not necessary.
8.2.3 Prior to expiry of the Interim Certificate the Member may apply to the Admissions Board for a Practising Certificate. If the Member applies for a Practicing Certificate the Applications Board will extend the period of the Interim Certificate until a decision has been made on the application. The applicant is to provide documentary evidence substantiating experience gained in drafting and preparing a writ and appearing in Court. If the Admissions Board is satisfied that the member has gained relevant experience it will prepare and submit a report to the Lord President seeking his approval that it issues a Practising Certificate as described at paragraph 7.0 above. If the Admissions Board is not satisfied that the Member has gained relevant experience a further Interim Practising Certificate may be issued with the restrictions noted at paragraph 8.2.2 above.
8.2.4 Only two interim certificates will be issued to each applicant. Thereafter, the applicant must wait for a period of two years before re-applying for an Interim Certificate.
8.3 Admissions Board
8.3.1 The Admissions Board during the Transitional Period shall comprise of six persons, of whom two will be Associates/Members of the Association and a minimum of four of whom will be non-affiliated members of the Association. During the Transitional Period one of the non-affiliated members will be a Patent Agent with Litigator Rights in England the other will be Solicitor or an Advocate. All appointments to the Admissions Board will require the approval of the Lord President.
8.3.2 A maximum of 10 Interim Practising Certificates will be issued by the Admissions Board during the first year of the Transitional Period.
8.4 Disciplinary Board
8.4.1 The Disciplinary Board during the Transitional Period shall comprise seven persons, of whom five will be Associates/Members of the Association and two of whom will be non-affiliated members of the Association. During the Transitional Period one of
the non-affiliated members will be a Patent Agent with Litigator Rights in England the other will be Solicitor or an Advocate. If a complaint is about an Attorney that is a member of the Complaints or Appeals panel that person must not sit on the panel. If the complaint is about the Head of the Complaints Board the Chairman or Vice Chairman of the Association of Commercial Attorneys must assume the role of Head of the Complaints Board.
8.5.1 During the Transitional Period a Member can apply to become a Fellow having been in the possession of a Practicing Certificate for a period of two years. During the Transitional Period no Fellow can undertake supervision of a Member with an Interim Practising Certificate.