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The following steps are recommended in creating your CPD Plan in the Lawyer Portal.
Step 1: Create and Evaluate Your CPD Plan
Create your annual CPD Plan by:
- Evaluating your last year’s CPD activities and accomplishments.
- Identifying your Actions, Timelines and Resources to accomplish your CPD goals identified above.
- What activities did I undertake pursuant to last year’s CPD Plan?
- How did this activity improve my competence as a lawyer?
- How much time did I spend on these CPD activities last year?
- What will be carried forward to my current year’s CPD Plan?
Identify your CPD goals:
- What activities will be of benefit to my practice?
- What activities do I plan to undertake this year?
- How will these activities benefit my practice?
- What measurable goals do I want to set for myself for the current year?
Step 2: Develop Your Plan
Use the online CPD plan template on the Lawyer Portal to create your current year’s plan, ensuring you address the mandatory competencies.
There are 6 competencies in the CPD plan, as well as an “other” category for any items that do not fit into a specific competency. Each competency has its own page in the planning template.
You are required to consider each of the other competencies and to acknowledge that through the check box on each page before you can declare your plan.
You will not be able to declare your plan complete if you do not acknowledge consideration of each competency.
Save your work frequently.
Step 3: Declare your Plan
Prior to declaring your plan on page 8 of the template:
- Ensure you have checked off the acknowledgement on each of the other competency pages.
When you are ready to declare your plan, proceed through the following steps:
- Select Page 8 on the planning tool.
- Read and understand the information presented.
- Certify your plan by checking the certification box.
- Confirm that you declare your plan by clicking the “Submit” button.
Step 4: Keep a Copy of Your Plan
- Email yourself a copy and print a copy of your plan from the website.
- Keep a copy of your plan for five years.
- Present a copy of your plan to the Law Society of Alberta, if asked.
Step 5: Reflect on Your Plan Throughout the Year
- Return to your plan throughout the year to reflect on your progress.
- Once your plan is declared, the plan components will not be available for editing.
- The reflection components will be available for editing all year, until the beginning of the next CPD year, allowing you to reflect on your activities and their impact on your practice, as well as update your plans for the current year.
*Please note that the CPD Plan page does not auto-save your text as you type. Please save your information as you move through the plan.
Remember, all plans must comply with the Rules of the Law Society, according to Section 67.1:
(1) Continuing professional development is any learning activity that is:
(a) relevant to the professional needs of a lawyer;
(b) pertinent to long-term career interests as a lawyer;
(c) in the interests of the employer of a lawyer; or
(d) related to the professional ethics and responsibilities of lawyers.
(2) Continuing professional development must contain significant substantive, technical, practical or intellectual content.
(3) It is each lawyer’s responsibility to determine whether a learning activity meets these criteria and therefore qualifies as continuing professional development.