Statement concerning the Ideal Number of Legal Professionals drafted by the Office for the Promotion of Systemic Reform in the Fostering of Legal Professionals
The Office for the Promotion of Systemic Reform in the Fostering of Legal Professionals in the Cabinet Secretariat (the “Office for Promotion”) compiled the outcome of the review concerning the ideal number of legal professionals and submitted it to the Advisory Board for Systemic Reform in the Fostering of Legal Professionals on May 21, 2015.
The new system for fostering legal professionals centered around law schools started in 2004. Contrary to initial forecasts, however, under the new system, the pass rate for the bar examination has remained low, and also newly-registered legal professionals have been facing very difficult situations in finding jobs. In addition, due mainly to the financial and time burdens in the process of becoming legal professionals, there has been a sharp year-on-year decrease in the number of applicants seeking to become legal professionals. With reference to the number of students enrolling in law schools, such number reached a peak of 5,784 in 2006, but has seen decreases each year thereafter, with this year marking 2,201 students, the lowest number in recent years.
Amid such ongoing situation, the JFBA positively evaluates the fact that the Office for Promotion has set a limit for the appropriate number of successful candidates passing the bar examination as being approximately “1,500” for the time being.
In order to maintain the quality of legal professionals and the significance and functions of the system for fostering legal professionals, as well as ensuring the public’s trust and faith in such system, the JFBA strongly calls on the related institutions to promptly set the number of successful bar examinees as “1,500” per year.
May 21, 2015
Japan Federation of Bar Associations