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Statistics for the attorneys' profession

About the attorneys’ profession

There are currently 25 195 practising attorneys and 5 746 candidate attorneys in South Africa. Attorneys are officers of the court and are registered on the roll of attorneys of the High Court and with the provincial law society where their firms are based.

An overview of the attorneys' profession
(As at May 2017)

Attorneys

Total attorneys 25 195  
White attorneys 14 936 59%
Black attorneys (includes African, coloured and Indian) 10 259 41%
White male attorneys 9 038 36%
Black male attorneys 6 354 25%
White female attorneys 5 898 24%
Black female attorneys 3 905 15%
Total female attorneys 9 803 39%

Candidate attorneys

Total candidate attorneys 5 746  
White candidate attorneys 2 136 37%
Black candidate attorneys 3 610 63%
White male candidate attorneys    840 15%
Black male candidate attorneys 1 609 28%
White female candidate attorneys 1 296 22%
Black female candidate attorneys 2 001 35%
Total female candidate attorneys 3 297 57%

Attorneys' firms
(2016)

Total firms 12 373
 
 
Sole practitioners 10 182
2 to 9 attorneys   2 084
10 to 19 attorneys       75
20 to 49 attorneys       15
More than 50 attorneys       17
The above data is supplied by the statutory, provincial law societies.
 

View the LSSA LEAD statistics on the profession, July 2015 (PDF - 1161KB)