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Regulated population statistics

Population of practising solicitors

The SRA regulates solicitors and their firms, as well as other lawyers and non-lawyer managers working in law firms across England and Wales. We also regulate those working as registered European lawyers or registered foreign lawyers. Our purpose is to protect the public by ensuring that solicitors meet high standards, and by acting when risks are identified.

The chart below shows the trend in the number of practising solicitors (those holding practising certificates) in England and Wales. There are currently 128,425 practising solicitors.

Population of practising solicitors: July 2009 to  March 2014

Each year we carry out a practising certificate bulk termination exercise where we terminate those practising certificates which have not been renewed. The results of this exercise can be seen by the falls in the numbers of solicitors holding practising certificates on the chart above in December 2009, January 2011, August 2012, March 2013, February 2014.

We also carry out an annual keeping of the roll exercise. The results of this exercise can be seen by a fall in the number of all solicitors on the roll in November 2012 and August 2013.

Snapshot of solicitors

As well as practising solicitors, we also regulate registered European lawyers, registered foreign lawyers, and exempt European lawyers and the current numbers of these three groups can be seen in the table below.

The total number of solicitors on the roll at the end of January was 165,242

Date range               All solicitors on the roll Practising solicitors* Registered European lawyers Registered foreign lawyers

Exempt European lawyers

March 2014

165242
128425
383
2003
2464

February 2014

164365
127423
374
1994
2452

January 2014

163898
130612
405
2140
2433

December 2013

163514
131134
397
2130
2420

November 2013

163015
130812
384
2106
2414

October 2013

162367
130643
383
2095
2340

September 2013

161323
129794
380
2076
2343

August 2013

158872
127874
375
1914
2342

July 2013

167790
127575
376
1898
2338

June 2013

167457
127068
370
1889
2308

May 2013

167146
126624
364
1870
2301

April 2013

166522
126064
354
1851
2269

March 2013

165956
125192
371
1825
2239

February 2013

164998
128169
409
2018
2226

January 2013

164793
128379
401
2000
2174

December 2012

164181
128419
393
1978
2078

November 2012

163031
127890
388
1967
2077

October 2012

169338
127353
384
1955
2077

September 2012

168713
127109
368
1929
2047

August 2012

166385
124968
367
1744
2046

July 2012

166007
128710
385
1852
2042

June 2012

165748
128860
366
1835
2023

May 2012

165519
128569
360
1812
2025

April 2012

165227
128240
343
1784
2018

March 2012

164841
127884
338
1780
2016

February 2012

163978
126858
328
1768
2001

January 2012

163229
126008
327
1765
1997

December 2011

163259
125718
317
1742
1996

November 2011

163108
125473
304
1728
1997

October 2011

162818
125011
305
1722
1994

September 2011

161815
124306
300
1707
1989

August 2011

159798
122343
294
1680
1966

 

 

 

*Practising solicitors are also counted in the numbers of solicitors on the roll.

Data for population of practising solicitors

Percentages and figures in this report may include rounding differences.

Date(s) Number
March 2014128425
February 2014127423
January 2014130612
December 2013131134
November 2013130812
October 2013130643
September 2013129794
August 2013127874
July 2013127575
June 2013127068
May 2013126624
April 2013126064
March 2013125192
February 2013128169
January 2013128379
December 2012128419
November 2012127890
October 2012127353
September 2012127109
August 2012124968
July 2012128710
June 2012128860
May 2012128569
April 2012128240
March 2012127884
February 2012126858
January 2012126008
December 2011125718
November 2011125473
October 2011125011
September 2011124306
August 2011122343
July 2011121859
June 2011121315
May 2011120905
April 2011120416
March 2011119641
February 2011118579
January 2011117802
December 2010120847
November 2010120786
October 2010121630
September 2010120917
August 2010118457
July 2010117869
June 2010117225
May 2010116574
April 2010116076
March 2010115200
February 2010114197
January 2010113405
December 2009112589
November 2009118349
October 2009119305
September 2009118562
August 2009116206
July 2009115487