Join our Council or committees
Do you have a passion for supporting your profession? Do you want to speak up on behalf of your colleagues across England and Wales?
There are lots of opportunities for you to get involved with our work. You could:
- stand for election or vote for Council
- be elected or appointed to the Council Membership Committee (CMC)
- be appointed to one of our policy advisory committees
- be appointed to serve on an external body through one of our external appointments
Council members are elected officials who:
- attend Council meetings and take part in forming our strategy and policy
- represent solicitors in discussions with the government and public bodies like the Legal Aid Agency
- review and debate our business plans and budgets
- represent the views of their constituency (geographical or special interest) at Council meetings
- liaise with members of the profession, including local law societies, sections and special interest groups, to explain our activities and report back to the Council
- liaise with external organisations about our work
- keep up to date with our work through policy papers and other documents
- approve appointments to Council committees
- approve the appointment of the chief executive
Council meetings take place on average five times a year and last all day.
One of these meetings is a strategic planning event. It gives Council members the chance to help create our strategy for supporting the profession and the public in the year ahead.
Want to know what it's like to be a Council member?
Find out what inspired them to stand, the issues they’re proud to have contributed to, and the things they’ve learnt.
Council members serve terms of office of four years and can currently stand again when their term of office expires. This is subject to a limit of service of 12 years in aggregate.
Elections take place each year as current Council members’ terms expire.
On average, a quarter of the geographical seats come up each year. The majority of the special interest seats come up together once every four years.
Council member terms are aligned with the Law Society’s annual general meeting (AGM), which is currently held in October.
We encourage all eligible solicitors, regardless of gender, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation or disability, to consider standing for election.
Read about your eligibility to stand or nominate in the nomination form (Word 117 KB).
Read more information for candidates including about canvassing and withdrawal of nominations in the preliminary notice of Council elections 2021 (PDF 671 KB).
We conduct the elections in accordance with the Law Society bye-laws (PDF 454 KB).
If you’d like to apply for a Council role, you’ll need to:
- complete the nomination form (Word 117 KB)
- ask two eligible Law Society members to sign the form as your nominators
- write a candidate statement (up to 1,000 words)
- supply a head and shoulders photograph of yourself
It will not affect your application, but it's very helpful for monitoring purposes if you're able to fill in the optional equal opportunity form (Word 775 KB).
Send the nomination form, statement and photo to firstname.lastname@example.org, along with the equal opportunity form if you chose to fill it in.
The nomination form and equal opportunity form have been updated since they were originally published. If you submitted your application using the original forms, this will still be accepted.
2021 Council elections timetable
Tuesday 22 June – preliminary notice of Council elections posted on our website/nominations open
Friday 30 July (midday) – last day for receipt of nominations
Thursday 14 October – successful candidates take office at the conclusion of the AGM
If you’re elected
We’ll provide a full induction and discuss any other training you feel you need to be fully effective in your role.
You’ll also need to undertake online equality and diversity training within six months of being elected.
Code of Conduct
You’ll need to comply with our Code of Conduct (PDF 244 KB) for council members. The code includes guidance on:
- conflicts of interest
- dignity at work
- member and staff relations
You’ll also be asked to register relevant interests on our published register of Council members’ interests (PDF 480 KB).
An online ballot is held to decide who will represent constituencies with contested seats.
In constituencies with either one or zero confirmed candidates, there will be no vote.
Have your say
Council helps to drive the strategic direction of the Law Society’s work, oversees changes to policy, and agrees our annual business plan and budget. This election is your opportunity to help decide who should represent you and your views on the issues that matter to you most.
Election are your opportunity to help decide who should represent you and your views on the issues that matter to you most.
Completing the ballot paper
If you’re eligible to vote in contested constituencies, you should receive a ballot from Civica via email.
You can then follow the instructions in the email to cast your vote.
If you’re not eligible to vote, you will not receive a ballot as there will not be an election you are eligible to participate in.
If you’re eligible and have not received an email inviting you to vote, first check your junk mail, then please contact email@example.com.
The Council Membership Committee (CMC) is made up of elected and appointed members of the profession.
It advises Council on matters to do with its composition and representativeness.
If you want to nominate for an elected vacancy, email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
When applications open, we’ll update this page to let you know which vacancies are elected and which are appointed.
Do you want to make a difference? We are looking for exceptional solicitors to join our policy advisory committees to share legal practice expertise.
You will join a talented team of volunteers to help shape Law Society policy on the issues affecting our profession.
Committee members are appointed for three-year terms, with the potential to renew their terms.
We’re seeking people to join the following committees:
- Access to Justice
- Children Law
- Civil Justice
- Company Law
- Criminal Law
- Education and Training
- Employment Law
- European Union
- Family Law
- Housing Law
- Human Rights
- Immigration Law
- Intellectual Property Law
- Mental Health and Disability
- Money Laundering Task Force
- Planning and Environmental Law
- Professional Indemnity Insurance
- Professional Standards and Ethics
- Regulatory Processes
- Tax Law
- Technology and Law
- Wills and Equity
Why should you become a committee member?
Get involved with shaping the issues affecting the profession, access to justice and the rule of law as they develop; gain insights into policy-making; and act as a voice for the profession in England and Wales.
As volunteers, our committee members are reimbursed for reasonable expenses. We also provide an annual incidental expenses allowance.
Our committees seek a diverse range of voices in their membership. To help this happen, meetings take place face to face, virtually and in hybrid settings.
How to apply
Our 2022 new member appointments programme is now closed.
If you'd like to submit a speculative application, please review the role for the committee you want to join in our alphabetical list of committee member roles and terms (Word 673 KB).
To apply, email email@example.com, attaching your:
- completed application form (Word 669 KB)
- (optional) equal opportunity form (Word 767 KB), and
- CV in Word format
Make sure you read the application form carefully and follow all the instructions.
After you apply
If a vacancy opens up in the calendar year, we'll forward your application to the appropriate committee chair for shortlisting. We'll contact you if you've been shortlisted.
We look forward to hearing from you.
At various times throughout the year, we appoint or nominate members of Council as representatives to serve on external bodies.
Appointments to external organisations are referred to and advertised as 'external appointments'.
There are currently no vacancies for external appointments.