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Purchasing legal services

From 1 July 2018, Legal Services Multi-Use List (LSMUL) requirements no longer apply to external legal services. The replacement procurement arrangement for government legal services is anticipated to start in the second quarter of 2019.

Legal service providers

In consultation with the Attorney-General's Department, the Department of Finance will undertake all procurement related activities to establish the Australian Government Legal Services Panel.

Potential tenderers are encouraged to register with AusTender to receive future notifications relating to the Legal Services Panel approach to market. When creating an AusTender profile, please ensure that you complete all fields and that you select the following notification settings:

  • to receive email notification of new open business opportunities and/or planned procurements, check the corresponding box located next to the 'Notify me about' option
  • enter 'legal' as a keyword
  • select 'Management and Business Professionals and Administrative Services' as a Category.

Once registered, you can also download approach to market related documents associated with AusTender notifications.

If you require assistance with setting up your profile, visit the AusTender Help page.

Questions about the Australian Government Legal Services Panel must be directed to the Department of Finance at legalservicespanel@finance.gov.au.

Interim arrangements for entities

Entities needing to procure legal services must do so in accordance with the Commonwealth procurement framework (including the Commonwealth Procurement Rules and guidance issued by the Department of Finance). Each agency ordinarily has a central procurement area as part of their Chief Financial Officer or corporate services area, which can advise agencies on standard procurement processes.

Accessing legal services through other agency parcelling arrangements

A number of agencies have parcelling arrangements in place with legal service providers that will extend over the transition period. Agencies that do not have such arrangements in place may wish to 'piggyback' off these arrangements. For the purposes of facilitating piggybacking, OLSC has prepared the document below that provides an indicative list of the current parcelling arrangements across a number of Commonwealth agencies. Smaller agencies are encouraged to consider piggyback arrangements over the transition period.

For information regarding piggybacking arrangements, visit Department of Finance website.

Commonwealth Contracting Suite

From 1 January 2016, the Commonwealth Contracting Suite (CCS) applies to all non-corporate Commonwealth entities (NCEs). Corporate Commonwealth entities are encouraged to apply this policy.

For the engagement of counsel, Resource Management Guideline 420 provides that use of the CCS is optional when industry practice uses different terms and conditions.​​​​​​