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OLQE Applications-Electronic Certificates of Good Standing

(This Post assumes that you are a foreign or overseas lawyer who is applying to sit or be exempt from sitting Hong Kong’s Overseas Lawyers Qualification Examination – “OLQE”).

You must provide an Original Certificate of Good Standing (“the Certificate”) from your professional body or Home Court.

The Certificate must be dated no more than 4 months from the date on which the Certificate was issued or from the date on which the Law Society of Hong Kong received your Form A (whichever is later).

The Certificate must confirm your date of admission, that you are of good character and repute, that no misconduct proceedings are pending against you, that you are still entitled to practise in your home jurisdiction, and that your name is still on the law list (i.e. the list of persons entitled to practise law in that jurisdiction).

You must also supply a certificate in relation to each jurisdiction in which you have been admitted. If there is more than on branch of the legal profession in your jurisdiction, you must supply a Certificate from each branch if you have been admitted in both branches (e.g. solicitor and barrister, as in England and Wales).

Electronic copies

The Certificate must be a physical copy, unless the Law Society of Hong Kong is satisfied that it is the policy of the issuing authority no longer to issue physical copies and there are no issues on authenticity and validity.

You should find out whether your issuing authority (Law Society, Bar etc) has resolved on a permanent basis not to issue original physical copies. If so, you should ask them to email the electronic copy of the Certificate of Good Standing directly to the Law Society at adrg1@hklawsoc.org.hk and OLQEAppin@hklawsoc.org.hk. If their policy is not to email the Certificate directly to a third party, but they sent the Certificate via email to you, then you should forward that email to the Law Society at the addresses above.

If the issuing authority cannot issue the original physical copy temporarily, you should ask the authority to provide an email directly to the Law Society at the above addresses confirming that they are unable to provide the physical copy and attaching the electronic copy of the Certificate of Good Standing to the email.

You should provide the original physical Certificate of Good Standing when it is available.

(Source: OLQE 2022 InfoPack, page 36:https://www.hklawsoc.org.hk/en/Maintain-Standards/Admission-Standards)

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