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Who must contribute?

Certain types of lawyers must make an annual contribution to the Fidelity Fund.  This needs to be done when you apply for a new certificate, or when you apply to renew your existing certificate. Approved barristers’ clerks and some foreign lawyers are also required to make an annual contribution.

Contribution amounts are set based on a range of factors, including practising certificate type and trust money received in a 12-month period.

We may adjust contribution amounts each year based on the balance of the Fidelity Fund and the advice of actuaries who help us manage the Fidelity Fund.

Contributions for the 2020-21 year

There are different fee requirements for Victorian lawyers, foreign lawyers and approved barristers’ clerks. See below for the fee category that applies to you.

Please note: where we refer to the amount of trust money handled below, we do not include ‘controlled money’ or ‘transit money’ that your practice may handle.

Contributions for Victorian-registered lawyers

For lawyers authorised to receive trust money

  • If you or your law practice received more than $750,000 in trust money for the year ending on 31 October last year, your contribution is $564.
  • If you or your law practice received between $Nil - $750,000 in trust money for the year ending on 31 October last year, your contribution is $283.

For lawyers NOT authorised to receive trust money

  • If you hold a practising certificate that authorises you to engage in legal practice as a principal of a law practice, and your law practice received more than $750,000 in trust money for the year ending on 31 October last year, your contribution is $564.
  • If you hold a practising certificate that authorises you to engage in legal practice as a principal of a law practice, and your law practice received between $Nil - $750,000 in trust money for the year ending on 31 October last year, your contribution is $283.
  • If you hold a practising certificate that authorises you to engage in legal practice as an employee of a law practice, and are employed by a law practice that is authorised to receive trust money, your contribution is $137.

Exempt lawyers

  • You do not have to pay a contribution if you are a barrister, a government lawyer, a corporate lawyer, an interstate lawyer, an employee or volunteer of a community legal service, or a principal or employee of a law practice that is not authorised to receive trust money.

Contributions for foreign lawyers

  • If you hold a registration certificate that authorises you to receive trust money, and you or your law practice received more than $750,000 in trust money for the year ending on 31 October last year, your contribution is $564.
  • If you hold a registration certificate that authorises you to receive trust money, and you or your law practice received between $Nil - $750,000 in trust money for the year ending on 31 October last year, your contribution is $283.
  • If you hold a registration certificate that does not authorise you to receive trust money, but you work for a law practice that is authorised to receive trust money, your contribution is $137.

Exempt foreign lawyers

  • You do not have to pay a contribution if you hold a registration certificate that does not authorise you to receive trust money, and you work for a law practice that is not authorised to receive trust money.
  • You do not have to pay a contribution if you hold a registration certificate that does not authorise you to receive trust money and you are not, and reasonably expect not to be, an associate of a law practice.

Contributions for approved barristers’ clerks

  • If you are authorised to receive trust money and you received more than $750,000 in trust money for the year ending on 31 October last year, your contribution is $564.
  • If you are authorised to receive trust money and you received between $Nil - $750,000 in trust money for the year ending on 31 October last year, your contribution is $283.
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