Implementation of the new Law Practitioner (LP) Classification Standard - Conversion

Date:

To: Heads of Human Resources

cc: Chiefs of Classification; Chiefs of Staffing; Chiefs of Labour Relations; Chiefs of Compensation

This bulletin is directed to departments and agencies with positions allocated to the Law (LA) Occupational Group including articling students.

It provides information and direction for the implementation of the new Law Practitioner (LP) Classification Standard effective as of .

Given the short timeframe between the publication of this bulletin and the implementation date, this bulletin includes critical information for classification, staffing, compensation, labour relations and systems updates.

1. Background

In 2010, the Treasury Board of Canada (TB) approved the restructuring of the Law (LA) Occupational Group in two distinct groups to be implemented in two phases. Phase one was restricted to lawyers with managerial responsibilities, and phase two for the practitioners. The first phase was completed in July 2011 with the conversion of LA positions to Law Management (LC) Group.

2. What’s New

The Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS) is now engaging departments and agencies in the conversion of the remaining LA positions to the new Law Practitioner (LP) Classification Standard.

In order to complete the restructuring of the Law Group, the following changes have been approved.

a) Classification

A new classification standard for Law Practitioners (LP) to be effective on the date of the conversion .

The elimination of the LA Classification Standard effective the date of conversion. There should be no LA positions in any HR related systems after the conversion is completed.

b) Renaming the LA Group

The LA Group Definition and Qualification Standard are renamed “Law Practitioner (LP)”.

The group definition for lawyers has not changed. Consequently the bargaining affiliation with the Association of Justice Council (AJC) remains valid.

c) Collective Agreement

The current LA collective agreement will apply to all LP positions until a new contract is signed. However, Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) has provided new Bargaining Unit Designation (BUD) codes for the LP group.

The Salary administration policy - Law Group - Department of Justice and other excluded legal officers is rescinded effective .

3. Departmental and HR Systems Readiness

Over the last six months, in preparation for the conversion, TBS provided all impacted departments and agencies, with the following:

  • information sessions in the application of the new LP Classification Standard;
  • a customized set of position information data in a tool (data cube) to report the results of departmental classification committees; and
  • draft “LP Application Guidelines” to assist departmental classification committees.

By now all departments and agencies should have completed the review of their LA positions, updated work descriptions where required, reclassified positions if needed, and classified all LA positions against the new LP Classification Standard.

TBS has completed the monitoring of departmental classification results and contacted departments to discuss unusual classification ratings.

TBS has provided PeopleSoft and other government HR systems with the required information to integrate the new LP Classification Standard in all HR systems.

4. Conversion Direction and Timelines

The following steps and timelines should guide departments and agencies in their conversion activities.

The date of the classification conversion from LA to LP is .

a) Reclassifications

Any position being reclassified as a result of the re-writing of a work description must be evaluated within the LA Classification Standard no later than . Subsequently, these reclassified LA positions must be converted to the new LP structure effective .

Articling student positions classified in groups other than LA should be reviewed and reclassified as LA before conversion to LP.

Law work meeting the LA/LP group definition classified in groups other than LA, should also be reviewed and reclassified before conversion. For these exceptional cases, please contact Angela Mutesi with the details.

b) Conversion

No later than the week of , departments and agencies will provide all employees occupying an LA position, with a letter informing them of the new group and level of their position. This letter is referred to as an Official Personal Notification (OPN). A template letter is available in Appendix A of this bulletin.

Please note that employees acting in an LA position should also receive an OPN informing them of the new group and level of their acting position.

c) Types of positions to be converted

All LA positions must be converted. This includes term positions, the positions of employees on special assignments, leave without pay, long term disability, etc.

Given the LA Classification Standard will cease to exist as of , all LA pay files along with managerial or confidential positions must be updated as well.

d) Excluded Positions

Departments and agencies are reminded that they are responsible for amending their LA positions in the Position Exclusions System.

The Association of Justice Council (AJC) has agreed to transfer the exclusions of existing LA positions to the new LP Group as long as the position number does not change. TBS has provided the AJC with the list of excluded LA positions.

e) Communications

TBS has prepared a suite of communication products to inform managers and employees of this initiative. Departments and agencies may adapt the products to better reflect their operational needs. See Appendix B for speaking points for managers and frequently asked questions for employees.

A crosswalk table demonstrating the change from the LA to LP classification structure is also provided in Appendix C.

5. Technical Information

a) Official Designation

The selected abbreviation for the Law Practitioner Group, “LP”, satisfies federal bilingual requirements and emphasizes the practitioner responsibilities inherent in the work.

The LP designation is to be used in all HR systems including those for the Public Service Employment Surveys, Job.gc.ca, Publiservice Public Service Staffing - Advertisements & Notifications, registration for courses at the Canada School of Public Service, management of priorities, etc.

b) Bargaining Unit Designation Code

The PWGSC has provided the following two BUD codes for compensation purposes:

  • BUD code for LP rates of pay is 24400.
  • BUD code for the LP rates of pay in the Toronto region is 24401.

c) Classification

The new LP Classification Standard includes a level description for articling work, LP-00 which aligns with the LA-DEV pay level provided for in the collective agreement.

Please note that the classification evaluation results for each sub-element under element 5 (Physical and Sensory Effort) and element 6 (Work Environment) should be entered separately as follows: 5a, 5b, 5c, 6a and 6b in all HR systems.

d) Compensation

PWGSC will provide departments with information and instructions on the conversion to the new classification structure in the Regional Pay System.

Please note the old LA BUD Code 21402 is no longer valid. Pay files currently using these BUD codes should be immediately converted to the code 21400.

e) Systems freeze

Departments are asked not to enter any new classification or staffing actions in HRIS or PeopleSoft during conversion. This will allow PWGSC to convert pay files.

6. Conversion Authority and Coding

The conversion date is .

In accordance with the Policy on Classification System and Delegation of Authority, a conversion is a one-time event that must be declared by TBS. This bulletin provides departments and agencies with the authority to convert LA positions to LP.

The reason code for conversion is “E”.

The National Occupational Classification (NOC) code for lawyers is 4112.

7. Information and Support

Additional information supporting the conversion can be found on the TBS Web Site.

a) Website

The LP Classification Standard, the qualification standards and occupational group definition are available on the Publiservice Conversion site.

b) Contacts

Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact members of the classification conversion team at TBS listed below:

  • Sylvie Cavanagh, Manager Classification Program Support
  • Angela Mutesi, Senior Analyst, Classification
  • Adelaide Correia, Senior Analyst, Classification
  • Mary Rowat, Senior Analyst, Qualification Standards
  • John Park, Negotiator, Compensation and Labour Relations

Thank you for your continuing support in this important initiative.

Original signed by:

Carl Trottier

A/Assistant Deputy Minister
Compensation and Labour Relations
Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer

Appendix A: Official Personal Notification Template

Employee Name
Employee PRI

Subject: Official Personal Notification of the result of the classification conversion from Law to Law Practitioner.

Dear employee name,

The purpose of this letter is to officially inform you of the group and level of your position resulting from the implementation of the new Law Practitioner (LP) Classification Standard. Such a process is commonly referred to as a classification conversion.

Your substantive / acting position number xxxx-xxx, currently classified at the LA-xx level, will be converted to the LP-xx level effective .

The current Law (LA) collective agreement and salary levels will continue to apply to all LP positions until the agreement expires and a new agreement is signed in accordance with the regular negotiation cycle.

Pursuant to the Classification Grievances Policy, if you are not in agreement with the classification conversion result, you have 35 calendar days from the date of this notice to file a formal grievance related to the classification decision or you may wish to consider using the informal conflict resolution process available. For additional information on classification recourse, please refer to the Classification Grievance Procedure.

Yours sincerely,

Assistant Deputy Minister
Organization Name

I acknowledge that I have read this notification:

Employee’s Signature  

cc: Chief of Classification
Chief of Compensation
Chief of Staffing

 

Date

Appendix B: Communications

For Managers to Use with Employees
New Law Practitioner Group

  • In 2006, a review was conducted of the work and responsibilities of the Law (LA) Group. These types of classification reviews are conducted periodically by the Treasury Board Secretariat as part of its mandate.
  • The review was conducted in close collaboration with senior managers from the Department of Justice and those of the Public Prosecution Services of Canada, and validated with management of other government organizations.
  • This review identified two distinct streams of work: one for management and the other for practitioners.
  • As a result, Treasury Board Secretariat designed two new classification standards—a Law Management (LC) Standard for positions with managerial responsibilities and a Law Practitioner (LP) Standard for positions performing legal work without having managerial responsibilities.
  • In 2011, LA positions with management responsibilities were converted to Law Management (LC).
  • All remaining LA positions, those without managerial responsibilities, i.e. without financial or staffing delegation, are now being converted to LP using the new LP Classification Standard.
  • The Law Practitioner (LP) Classification Standard comes into effect on .
  • Employees will be provided with a letter informing them of the new group and level of their position, and of their classification grievance rights.
  • What is important for employees to know is that:
    • The bargaining agent remains the same.
    • The current LA collective agreement will apply to all LP positions.
    • The new LP classification structure is aligned with the LA pay structure, which means that an employee’s salary remains the same unless his or her duties have changed.
  • By restructuring the LA Group, the Government is improving the way it organizes and values legal work.

New Law Practitioner Group

Issue: The restructure of the Law (LA) Group resulted in two new classification standards, one for managers and another for practitioners. The new Law Practitioner (LP) Classification Standard comes into effect .

Questions and Answers

1. Why was the new Classification Standard for the Law Practitioner Group implemented?

In 2006, a review was conducted of the work and responsibilities of the Law (LA) Group. These types of classification reviews are conducted periodically by the Treasury Board Secretariat as part of its mandate.

2. When does the Law Practitioner Classification come into effect?

The Law Practitioner (LP) Classification Standard comes into effect on .

3. To whom will the introduction of the new LP standard apply?

The new LP standard will apply to employees currently occupying LA positions in the core public administration.

4. Will the LA Group still exist after ?

No. The LA Group has been changed into two new separate groups; a Law Management (LC) Group for positions with managerial responsibilities and a Law Practitioner (LP) Group for positions performing legal work without having managerial responsibilities.

This change will facilitate the ability to evaluate work, facilitate career progression, and provide consistency in evaluating legal work.

By restructuring the LA Group, the Government is improving the way it organizes and values legal work.

5. How will I be informed of the new group and level of my position?

A letter will be sent to all employees, occupying an LA position, to inform them of the new group and level of their position and of their classification grievance rights.

6. I am in an acting position. Will I receive a letter?

Yes. Furthermore, if your substantive position is an LA and you are acting in another LA position, you will receive two letters, one informing you of the new classification of your substantive position and another for the new classification of your acting position.

7. Will the introduction of the new LP Group result in promotions or salary increases for employees?

The new LP classification structure is aligned with the existing LA pay structure which means that your salary remains the same unless your duties have changed.

8. Where can I obtain a copy of my work description?

Your manager will provide you with a copy of your work description.

9. Where can I find out more about the LP standard?

More information on the new LP standard is available on the TBS website.

Appendix C: Crosswalk Table from LA to LP

Law (LA)
Group and Level
New Law Practitioner (LP)
Group and Level
Conversion Date
Rates of PayFootnote 1
All Regions except Toronto
Collective Agreement
Effective
Rates of PayFootnote 1
Toronto Region
Collective Agreement
Effective
LA-3B LP-05 $158,057 to $193,377 $158,057 to $193,377
LA-3A LP-04 $136,332 to $173,177 $144,335 to $188,168
LA-2B LP-03 $121,156 to $152,433 $127,197 to $175,431
LA-2A LP-02 $99,976 to $137,886 $100,283 to $158,743
LA-01 LP-01 $71,734 to $98,936 $71,734 to $98,936
LA-00
Articling Students
LP-00
Articling Students
LP-DEV
$36,172 to $78,970
LP-DEV
$36,172 to $78,970
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