Becoming a Student-at-Law

If you wish to become a member of the legal profession in Alberta, you must be of good character and reputation, meet the academic qualifications, successfully complete a bar admission course and serve a term of articles.

See sections 37(1) and 40(1) of the Legal Profession Act.

You must have obtained a Canadian common law degree or an equivalent qualification, after which you may then apply for student-at-law status. If you have a foreign law degree, visit our Internationally Trained Lawyers and Graduates page for more information.

Students who intend to practice law in Alberta must first complete a 12-month articling term (15 months where part of the articling term is with a court). 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 should be aware of. 


Deadlines to Submit Documentation: 30-Day Rule

The required documents listed below must be received by the Law Society at least 30 days prior to the proposed articling commencement date.

The Law Society’s Executive Director may abridge the 30-day rule. To request abridgment, you must apply in writing, explaining the exceptional circumstances for not being able to comply with the 30-day rule.

This letter must be signed by the student and potential principal. For further information, consult Rule 51 of the Rules of the Law Society of Alberta.

Complete and submit the following:

*Please note on June 1, 2015 the Law Society made a number of changes to the articling student application forms. View this brief webinar for more information.

For application and admission fees, please consult the Schedule of Fees.

Form #
Form Name
2-1 Application for Admission
Completed by student
Education Plan
Completed by student and principal
Articles of Clerkship
Completed by student and principal
Additional Submission Requirements

Proof of Identification: provide an original notarized copy of a birth certificate, passport or driver license on which your full legal name appears. Original notarized documents must be mailed, couriered or hand-delivered to the Calgary office. Official law school transcripts must also be mailed to the Calgary office.

Police Check/Criminal Record Check: a police check should come from the applicant's home province, if other than Alberta, to ensure useful information is provided.

Certificate of Standing from each governing body of which you are or have been a member, inside and/or outside of Canada.

For holders of a Canadian common law degree, an original transcript must be provided by the University showing law degree conferred.

For holders of a civil law or foreign law degree, an NCA certificate must be provided by the Federation of Law Societies.

Please send the information by mail or email to Membership Services.

Additional Information

Receipt of Transcripts

For holders of a Canadian common law degree, if you are unable to provide an official transcript confirming your law degree has been granted, the Law Society will accept written confirmation from the Dean of your law school that you have met all requirements of the degree.

For holders of a civil law or foreign law degree, if you are unable to provide an NCA certificate, the Law Society will accept written confirmation from the NCA.

Admission Disclosure

If you have responded "yes" to any of the questions listed on your application for admission, you must provide full disclosure and include all official documentation. This may include court documents, bankruptcy discharge documentation, academic misconduct information and medical reports.

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