How do I know when during the year exams will take place?
Visit the Exam schedule page of the website. The exam schedule also indicates when you can register for your exams.
How will I know MY exam start time?
When you register for your exam, you will select the exam date that works for you. About two weeks before the exam session starts, you will be able to find your scheduled exam start time in the NCA portal under the “Exam History” tab. If you do not see it there one week before the exam, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
How will I know when my exam is scheduled?
NCA will send you an email to let you know the date and time of your exam.
If I want to take a break during my exam, what do I do?
Notify the Proctor that you wish to take a break and do not take it until the Proctor tells you it is okay to do so. The exam clock will continue to run during your break.
What response time can I expect when I contact the NCA?
Response times will depend on the nature of the request or the transaction. Refer to our Service Standards on the NCA Policies page to learn about response times for various services.
Will the age of my law degree affect the results of the assessment?
In order for your legal qualifications to be considered current, in three of the last five years, you must have been attending a Qualifying Law Degree Program, pursuing additional legal studies and acquiring legal experience satisfactory to the Executive Director, or engaged in some combination of legal studies and legal experience.
If your legal qualifications are stale, you will be required to complete additional subjects as follows:
- For each 5-year period without current qualifications and up to 15 years – 1 of Contracts, Torts, or Property
If some, or all, of these subjects have already been assigned, Additional Legal Subjects will be assigned from the following list:
- Business Organizations
- Civil Procedure
- Commercial Law
- Family Law
- If you have more than 15 years without current qualifications – a minimum of four subjects will be assigned, with the final number determined by the Executive Director
Once more than 10 subjects have been assigned by the Executive Director, the courses, or acceptable alternatives, must be completed through In-person Instruction at an Approved Canadian Common Law Program or Approved Law Program.
- For complete details related to the age of your degree, refer to subsection 9.2 of the NCA Policies.
What is the NCA?
The National Committee on Accreditation (NCA) is a standing committee of the Federation of Law Societies of Canada. Committee members include administrators of provincial and territorial law societies and of the practising bar, and representatives of the Council of Canadian Law Deans.
We help Canada’s law societies protect the public interest by making sure that anyone who earned their legal education and training outside Canada has the knowledge they need to practise law in Canada. We tell people how to improve their knowledge of Canadian law so it compares to the knowledge they would get from an approved Canadian common law degree program.
The NCA does this using a process that assesses your academic training and professional experience. Then the NCA uses a single standard to determine what exams or studies you need to complete to either fill gaps in your knowledge or show that you have the knowledge you need.
What is the purpose of the NCA assessment?
During the assessment, the NCA reviews your academic and professional experience. We find gaps between your education and training on one hand, and the knowledge you would get from an approved Canadian law school program on the other hand. Then we assign exams or studies to make sure you meet our standard, called the National Requirement.
Canadian law school graduates, as well as NCA candidates, must meet this standard to qualify for bar admissions in a common law jurisdiction in Canada.
Who can apply for assessment?
The NCA evaluates the qualifications of anyone with a law degree, whether you are:
- a Canadian citizen who got your legal education abroad
- a Canadian civil law graduate
- a newcomer to Canada with an overseas legal education
- someone considering immigrating to Canada.
Can I become licensed to practise law in the common law provinces or territories of Canada without getting a Certificate of Qualification?
If you have studied law abroad, you must have an NCA Certificate of Qualification to qualify for law society bar admissions in all common law provinces and territories in Canada.
What is the purpose of the Certificate of Qualification?
A Certificate of Qualification proves you have shown the NCA that your knowledge of Canadian law is similar to the knowledge of someone who got their law degree through an approved Canadian common law program. The NCA gives you a certificate once you finish the process.