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 Purchasing legal services

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About the Whole of Australian Government Legal Services Panel

The Whole of Australian Government Legal Services Panel commenced on 15 August 2019. The Standing Offer Number for the Panel is SON3622041.

Legal services providers are appointed to the panel for one or a number of practice areas, each with associated schedules of rates.

Alongside the panel, Commonwealth agencies can use AGS for any legal work at any time.

Please note: Agencies will be able to purchase up to 10% of the value of their external legal services outside of the panel. This includes from legal services providers who did not tender or were not successful in being selected for the panel. Corporate Commonwealth entities can opt in to use the panel, but are not required to do so.

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Practice areas

The panel consists of five broad areas of law:

  • workplace, industrial relations and compensation
  • property and environment
  • public law
  • corporate and commercial
  • litigation specialisation.

Each area of law comprises a number of practice areas. For more information, refer to:

In addition, Legal Support Services is a separate service for the procurement of legal staff in labour-hire type arrangements.

Transitional arrangements

  • Participating agencies must use the panel for new legal services procurements from 15 August 2019, subject to some exemptions.
  • Agencies may continue to use pre-existing arrangements (such as parcelling arrangements created under the LSMUL) for new legal services procurements during a six-month transition period, ending on 14 February 2020.
  • Agencies that are establishing "bundling arrangements" with panel providers for volume services, can establish new arrangements before transitioning to the panel.
  • Legal services that are procured prior to the commencement of the panel are not affected by the panel arrangements. This is because the Commonwealth Procurement Rules, that require non-corporate Commonwealth entities to use coordinated procurements, apply at the time the procurement takes place.

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How to use the panel

Legal Services Panel Portal

We have established the Legal Services Panel Portal to enable participating Commonwealth agencies to access legal services from the panel or the Australian Government Solicitor (AGS).

Agencies can use the portal to search for the names and rates of legal services providers and AGS, for any practice area.

If you are a participating agency and you do not have a portal user account, please complete the Agency Profile Form [DOCX 19KB] and email it to lspanel@ag.gov.au.

Useful documents

Information about the panel

Information for agencies

Induction sessions

We held induction sessions for Commonwealth agencies and panel legal services providers in August 2019. Sessions covered:

  • how the panel will operate and what it means to use the panel
  • transitional arrangements
  • how AGD and AGS relate to the panel
  • panel guidance material and the flexibility framework
  • a demonstration of the Legal Services Panel (LSP) Portal.

Download a copy of the presentations:

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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.

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