APEC economy: Canada; Jurisdiction: Nova Scotia

Temporary practice ('fly-in, fly-out' practice)

There is no express rule allowing temporary practice by foreign lawyers.

Limited licensing of foreign lawyers (foreign legal consultant rules)

A foreign lawyer can obtain a limited licence entitling them to offer advisory services in foreign and international law (ie become a foreign legal consultant).

The relevant legislation are regulations made under the Legal Profession Act and the Legal Profession Regulations.

Details of the requirements for qualifying for a limited licence and what a limited licence entitles a foreign lawyer to do are included in the database. The requirements that must be met include that the person be a member in good standing of the legal profession of their home jurisdiction, be of good character, have practised law for at least three years, and must submit to the jurisdiction of the Law Society. As to scope of practice, foreign legal consultants may only practise the law of their home jurisdiction, and are prohibited from handling trust moneys.

As at June 2009, no limited licences had been granted to foreign lawyers in this jurisdiction.

Full licensing

A foreign lawyer can obtain a full licence to practise law in this jurisdiction.

The relevant legislation are regulations made under the Legal Profession Act and the Legal Profession Regulations.

In order to obtain a full licence to practise law in this jurisdiction, foreign lawyers must apply to the National Committee on Accreditation for evaluation of their legal credentials and experience. These requirements are different from the rules applicable to a local applicant. They differ in that applicants with a Canadian common law degree may apply directly to the Law Society.

Commercial association between lawyers and law firms

In this jurisdiction:

Other regulatory issues

In this jurisdiction:

A lawyer or law firm may practise under the name of the lawyer present or former members of the firm or a business name so long as the name is in good taste, dignified and professional. The lawyer shall not be held out as a member of a firm which has part of the name the words 'and Company', 'and Associates', 'and Partners' or similar words if the only member or members of the firm are those indicated in the firm name. A lawyer or law firm which acquires a law practice may for a reasonable length of time add the following to the name of the firm: 'successor to' followed by the name of the lawyer or firm whose practice was acquired.

Foreign lawyers and firms are treated differently from local lawyers in the application of these rules in that foreign lawyers must use the term 'foreign legal consultant', state the foreign jurisdiction in respect of which he or she is qualified to practise law and the professional title used in that jurisdiction, and state that he or she is not a member of the Law Society.


Category Name Website or other contact details
Organisation(s) that controls licensing of lawyers Nova Scotia Barristers Society www.lawsociety-barreau.nb.ca
Peak professional association representing the legal profession Canadian Bar Association - Nova Scotia Branch www.cba.org/ns/home
Other associations playing a significant role in developing policy for the legal profession Federation of Law Societies of Canada www.flsc.ca

Other issues

In Canada, regulation of the legal profession is the exclusive responsibility of the Provincial and Territorial Law Societies. Law Societies are mandated by provincial law and territorial legislation to regulate the profession in the public interest. This includes setting rules governing admission to the profession. As such, the regulation of foreign lawyers who wish to practise in Canada is governed by the rules of the individual Law Societies. Law Societies are not representatives of, or advocates for, the profession. That role is fulfilled by organisations such as the Canadian Bar Association and its branches.