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COLP and COFA Nomination Update

20 March 2012

The SRA have announced that they are extending the deadline for nominating COLPs and COFAs from 31 March 2012.

In a statement on their website, the SRA say that this is, “in order to give firms more time to finalise their nominations to the SRA, and to allow for further checks on the application process.”

The SRA suggest that an online nomination form is expected to go live in the next six weeks but once the date is finalised, they will write to all firms providing further advice and information, including timescales for nominations and details of the data required for the online process. They do, however, remain confident that there will be no slippage of the deadline for completing the approval process and it is their intention to have this finished by the original date of 31 October 2012, when COLPs and COFAs must start fulfilling their duties.

The SRA have published the following guidance which provides a useful indication of what they will be looking for in nominations.

Details of the firm making the Nomination

  • Firm Name
  • Registered/Head Office address
  • A copy of the firm's organisation structure
  • A copy of the firm's governance structure showing the position of the compliance officers
  • Information about the numbers of legally qualified personnel, fee earners and the types of legal services offered by the firm
  • Detail of the Compliance Officer role within the firm (this may be supported by a job description/role profile document) eg whether they are part-time or full-time employee, other employers they have if this is applicable, whether the role is a full-time or part-time role within the firm or if they carry out other roles within the firm

Personal details of the Compliance Officer candidates

  • Candidate's name
  • Address history for five years
  • Work history for five years
  • Professional details
  • Professional interests eg other business links or separate businesses
  • Role within the firm
  • SRA Suitability Test 2011 - download here SRA Suitability Test 2011

If you would like to know more about what is involved in the being a COFA our CPD training course, which is entitled COFA - The Role and Responsibilities Explained, has been carefully compiled to provide practical advice and guidance on key topics such as the SRA Accounts Rules, common compliance problems, appropriate accounting systems and controls, identifying high risk areas and fulfilling your obligation to record and report breaches of the SRA Accounts Rules to the SRA.

If you would like us to keep you updated on the latest legal regulatory and compliance news, including the latest developments relating to roles of COLP and COFA, sign up for our FREE newsletter.

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