In November 2018 the Law Society of South Africa undertook a survey of its constituent young lawyers – those age 35 and younger and those over 35, but who have been in practice for fewer than 5 years. The link to an online survey was sent to all the lawyers on the LSSA database with the request that lawyers who meet the young lawyer criteria should complete the questionnaire. A total of 1 555 responses were received although not all the respondents answered all the questions.
The survey covered five broad areas and the findings are reported in this order:
- the demographic profile of the respondents,
- young lawyers’ work life,
- their work-life balance,
- their legal careers and,
- their expectations of the LSSA as professional body.
It aimed to gain a thorough understanding of the experiences, perceptions and needs of young lawyers in South Africa and their expectations of the LSSA, especially in view of the changes in function brought about by the Legal Practice Act (LPA).