Re-accreditation is a way of assuring consumers and key stakeholders that accredited practices meet the requirements of the CQS protocol. The CQS accreditation is awarded for 12 months. To renew your CQS membership you must complete the re-accreditation process.
How to apply for re-accreditation
The CQS re-accreditation process is changing. The process will now follow a three year assessment cycle.
Practices will be asked to submit a full application in year one. Upon re-accreditation for year two and three, firms will be asked to complete an annual maintenance assessment.
The annual maintenance assessment application form will focus on the key aspects of probity and assurance.
In year four, firms will be asked to complete the full re-accreditation application form. The process will then continue on a rolling basis with firms entering year five or six being asked to complete the annual maintenance assessment and year seven asked to complete the full re-accreditation application form.
This rolling process will reduce the burden placed upon firms when seeking re-accreditation, while at the same time ensuring that the scheme is able to balance the reputational risk for all member firms.
As part of the re-accreditation process, you will be sent the relevant form and guidance notes. However you can download the forms here.
The table below sets out the assessment cycle:
|Year applied for||Type of application|
|Year 1||Full application form|
|Year 2||Annual maintenance|
|Year 3||Annual maintenance|
|Year 4||Full re-accreditation form|
|Year 5||Annual maintenance|
|Year 6||Annual maintenance|
|Year 7||Full re-accreditation form|
Step 1: Complete the relevant re-accreditation application form
Complete the relevant re-accreditation form and send it to us at least six weeks before the date your accreditation is due to expire. Please refer to the relevant guidance notes to help you complete the form.
If you wish to change your SRO or head of conveyancing or to add new relevant persons at re-accreditation or at any time during your accreditation, please complete a separate application form:
Step 2: Select your payment method and return your application to us
An annual membership fee is payable, based on the number of partners. See the CQS fees page for full details.
Assessment and award of re-accreditation
Your re-accreditation application will be validated and assessed by the Law Society. If your application is unsuccessful, you may appeal.
Merger notification form
If your practice has CQS and you are considering, or you are in the process of, merging with another practice please complete the merger notification form (Word 432kb).
Once re-accredited, all relevant persons must complete mandatory training within six months from the date on which the practice receives confirmation of re-accreditation.
Find out more about the mandatory training for CQS