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Lawyers with 2020 special permit exempt from bar exam

Mohamed Rehan
19 October 2022, MVT 11:11
Lawyers taking oath of profession--
Mohamed Rehan
19 October 2022, MVT 11:11

Lawyers who received special practicing license in 2020 will be exempted from taking the bar exam.

The decision was made by People's Majilis - the Maldives parliament.

The advocates with special practicing licenses have been made exempt following amendments to Legal Profession Act. Earlier, Vilimale' MP Ahmed Usham proposed the bill to Maldives parliament, reflecting changes to the act, which was approved during Tuesday's sitting, a total of 58 lawmakers voted in favor of the bill.

In a 2020 amendment to the act, local advocates received the special practicing license after academic completion or special training programs. However they were mandated to take the bar exam.

MP Usham proposed to retract the provision enforcing bar exam on advocates who received the special practicing license.

Aside from MP Usham, Holhudhoo MP Yunus Ali had proposed a second amendment to the Maldives Legal Profession Act. The bill was passed during Tuesday's sitting as well.

MP Yoonus proposed amendments to the provision mandating law academics to complete relevant training for not less than a one-year period, to become eligible for the bar exam. With Tuesday's approved changes to the Act, Bar Council has been enforced to formulate training programs specific to the Maldives after reviewing the practice internationally.

Additionally, the bill had proposed various revenue streams for the Bar Council, including renewal fees or accrediting new practicing licenses for advocates.

The council is mandated with creating annual budgets, inclusive of its projected revenue for the fiscal period, capital and recurrent expenses. Revenues are to be deposited into the bank account created for the council, which should be expend according to relevant regulations formed from Legal Profession Act.

The amendments had also expanded council's powers on investigating disciplinary cases against lawyers. Moreover, the council can now initiate such investigations, while any member of the public may come forward with their cases against advocates to the council.

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