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Becoming a Principal

If you wish to take on an articling candidate and act as an articling principal, you must first apply and be approved by the Law Society.  To be eligible, you must meet the criteria set out below. You may also wish to review the experiential training competencies established by the Law Society to assess how your practice can provide an experience that supports these competencies.

Once approved as an articling principal, you no longer have to re-apply to maintain this status, so long as you continue to meet the eligibility requirements. To check on your status, you may contact the Law Society’s Articling office at or 416-947-3315 or 1-800-668-7380 ext.3315.​

As of May 2014, our requirements have changed. If you were approved prior to 2014, you may be required to re-apply.  

Eligibility Criteria

If you wish to serve as an articling principal, you must be:

  1. Actively engaged in practice of law for 3 of the 5 years immediately preceding the intended articling placement.
  2. An exemplar of the profession, having regard to all circumstances including but not limited to your experience, competence, ethical standards and professional conduct record.

All relevant information with respect to the lawyer, including all information and records in the possession of and maintained by the Law Society, including without limitation any claims, regulatory history, investigations, trustee services and other applicable matters, may be considered in the approval or removal of a lawyer as a Principal. 

Disqualifying Characteristics:

  • Suspension of the lawyer’s license;
  • An open regulatory proceeding being conducted by the Law Society or ensuing court proceedings related thereto;
  • An open investigation being conducted by the Law Society;
  • An open complaint to the Law Society containing allegations of harassment or discrimination.

Please note that a regulatory record may not necessarily preclude a lawyer from becoming a principal. All of the circumstances of the regulatory record, including but not limited to the finding, the date and nature of the lawyer’s conduct, the lawyer’s conduct since the finding was made, and the sanction, will be taken into consideration.

For more information, please refer to section 10 of the Lawyer Licensing Process Policies

Application Requirements

To apply to serve as an articling principal, you must provide:

  1. A completed Application to Serve as an Articling Principal;
  2. A recent Statement of Qualifications – this can be your CV, professional profile page, or firm biography.

Once the application is complete, scan and e-mail to

Review Process

You will receive a notice about the status of your application within approximately 10 business days, provided your application is complete. We may request further information, as required.

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