- Become a Lawyer
- Application & Admission
- Bar Admission Program
- Bar Call & Enrolment
- General Process
- Become a Principal
- Visiting Lawyers
- Membership Services
- Billing Cycles, Filing Deadlines and Other Key Dates
- How to Become a Member in Alberta
- Status Options & Contact Information Changes
- Making a Payment to the Law Society
- Membership & Indemnity Program Renewals
- Member & Indemnity Certificates
- Indemnity & Indemnity Exemptions
- Professional Corporations (PCs)
- Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs)
- Alberta Lawyers Indemnity Association (ALIA)
- About ALIA
- Report a Claim
- Group Policy
- Indemnity Levy
- Enhanced Surcharge Protocol
- Civil Litigation Filing Levy Pilot
- Universal Cyber Coverage Program
- ALIA Board
- Financial Reports
- Indemnity Forms
- Making a Payment to ALIA
- Continuing Professional Development
- Practice Advisors
- Trust Accounting & Safety
- Practice Management Consultations
- Equity Ombudsperson
- Fraud & Loss Prevention
- Approved Legal Services Providers
- Forms & Certificates
To become a member of the legal profession in Alberta, you must:
- Be of good character and reputation,
- Meet the academic qualifications,
- Have obtained a Canadian common law degree or an equivalent qualification. If you have a foreign law degree, visit our Internationally Trained Lawyers page for more information.
- Successfully complete the Practice Readiness Education Program (PREP),
- Serve a term of articles.
- Until January 1, 2023, a complete term of articles is 8 – 12 months (see this article for April 2020 changes to articling term). Starting January 1, 2023, a complete term of articles returns to 12 months (see this article for details on the changes to the articling term, including how PREP integrates). While many students will complete their articling year at a single firm or organization, there are other options such as composite articles and secondments that students and employers can pursue.
More details on becoming a student-at-law are available in the Legal Profession Act, sections 37(1) and 40(1).
- Application for Admission as a Student-at-Law
- Articling Agreement Application
Please complete your application online in the Lawyer Portal as we are no longer accepting student-at-law applications in paper form.
Due Date: Your complete application must be received by the Law Society at least 30 days prior to the proposed start date for your articles.
Principal Requirements: Your principal will be notified of your application by email. They must complete the Articling Agreement Application found on the portal and must meet the requirements of Rule 55. After the articling term has finished, your principal must also certify that you have met the requirements in the Lawyer Portal.
Fees: Please note that there is a fee for both application and admission for articling. Students will be required to pay when they apply to complete the application process. Payment arrangements are between students and principals. Acceptable payment options are Online Bill Payment (OBP) and Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT). For admission fees and more information, please visit our Making a Payment page.
Additional Submission Requirements
If you are not able to upload any of the below documents at the time of your application, please scan your documents and email them to Membership.
Proof of Identification: Provide a copy of government-issued photo ID such as a passport or driver’s licence on which your full legal name appears. Please submit this document through the Lawyer Portal.
Police Check/Criminal Record Check: Applicants must obtain an official criminal record check from their local police department or the RCMP prior to submitting their application for admission as a student-at-law. This should come from the applicant’s home province, if other than Alberta, to ensure useful information is provided. This document should be included with the application to become a student-at-law and must be dated within 90 days from the date of submission. Alternatively, applicants can submit an online criminal record check obtained from a company such as Sterling Back Check or Commissionaires. Please submit this document through the Lawyer Portal.
An Original Transcript: If you are a holder of a Canadian common law degree, you must request the original transcript indicating that your law degree has been conferred. Your transcript must be sent directly to the Law Society from the university electronically or by mail. We will accept written confirmation from the dean of your law school that you have met all requirements of the degree (dean’s letter) in the interim while we wait for your official transcript.
Digital Transcripts: We will accept transcripts from a recognized digital service provider such as MyCreds or the National Student Clearing House. If your institution is using a provider not listed above, please contact us prior to requesting the transcript.
MyCreds.ca: Once your official transcript has been issued to your digital wallet in MyCreds, you must share it with the Law Society. You will see the document listed in the documents section on your MyCreds account, where you will see a share option. You must share to an organization and choose Law Society of Alberta rather than emailing a copy.
For assistance submitting your digital transcripts, please reach out to the issuing institution directly.
For holders of a civil law or foreign law degree, an NCA certificate of qualification must be provided to the Law Society directly from the NCA.
Please complete your application online in the Lawyer Portal. Please note that an application is not considered complete and will not be reviewed for approval until the above documentation and any other requested documentation has been received. A completed application also includes acceptance from your principal, completion of the Education Plan and all applicable fees paid in full.
If you have successfully completed your articling term and the PREP program, visit the Bar Call & Enrolment page for next steps.
Student Process Flowchart
To apply to become a student-at-law, you must complete two applications on the Lawyer Portal:
- Application for Admission as a Student-at-Law
- Articling Agreement Application
For a step-by-step guide, please refer to the User Guide.
You must submit four documents:
- Proof of government issued identification (driver’s licence, passport, or birth certificate)
- Police check
- Original transcript internationally trained lawyers must also submit their National Committee on Accreditation certificate
- Certificate of Standing (from each governing body of which you are or have been a member inside or outside of Canada)
Your application will not be approved without all required documents.
I completed my application for admission, but I didn’t receive an email with instructions. What do I do?
The payment options are Online Bill Payment (OBP) or Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT).
Processing times vary. Your complete application must be received by the Law Society at least 30 days prior to your proposed start date of articling.
While a typical application takes approximately 30 days to review, if an enhanced consideration of good character is required or the suitability of your proposed principal requires additional analysis, this will impact the time it takes to review your application. An enhanced review of good character may include an investigation and/or a good character hearing.
You may begin your articles once you have received an approval letter from the Law Society, which will state your approved commencement date.
Principals will be required to sign in to the Lawyer Portal and confirm acceptance of the Articling Agreement. At the end of the agreed term, principals are required to log in to the Lawyer Portal and certify requirements were met.
If you are clerking with a court, your principal does not need to submit an Articling Agreement. Once your articles have ended, your principal will be required to complete and submit a Certificate of Principal (Form 2-12/2-13).
- If you have paid the application fee of $210, please log in and continue with your application with the password that you were emailed. If you are having trouble logging in to your Lawyer Portal, please email Membership.
- If you have not paid the application fee of $210, please contact the Law Society within 24 hours for help logging in. If it has been more than 24 hours since your initial application and you did not pay the application fee, please restart your application.
If you are unable to provide a Certificate of Standing within the timeline requested by the Law Society, there may be an alternative solution to providing the document or you may request an extension. Please contact Membership directly for more information.
You must log in to the Lawyer Portal and complete the Articling Agreement Application. After the articling term has finished, you must certify that your student met the requirements in the Lawyer Portal.
You must receive confirmation from the Law Society that your application and your student’s application have been approved before your student can begin to article. Both applications must be submitted 30 days prior to your student’s proposed articling start date.
Please visit the Lawyer Portal and click Forgot your Password under the Login button. You will be prompted to enter your Law Society Login ID (member ID) and email. You will be emailed a reset password link. If you need assistance, please call Customer Service at 1.800.661.9003.
No, there is no associated fee.
You must receive confirmation from the Law Society that your student’s application has been approved before your student can begin to article. A complete application must be submitted 30 days prior to your student’s clerkship.
Students Already Admitted
If you have already submitted your application in paper form, you do not need to re-apply electronically. We have received your application and it is under review.