The Solicitors Regulation Authority has today issued a statement informing solicitors that they will be able to renew their registration, recognition or practising certificate from 21 November.

Solicitors are asked to visit the SRA site on 18 November, when the regulator will confirm whether or not this will be an online process, amid ongoing problems with implementation of the new system. The SRA may have to revert to a paper-based process.

'We are working hard to introduce the new online renewals process, but will not do so until we are confident that it is reliable,’ the statement said.

The deadline for the renewals process is being extended to Friday, 23 December. Practising certificates, registrations for RELs and RFLs, firm recognitions, and sole practitioner authorisations will remain valid during any interim period caused by the late start of the process.

The deadline for activating mySRA accounts is now 30 November; some 70,000 accounts have been activated so far.

SRA chief executive Antony Townsend said: 'We are very sorry for the inconvenience which the delay may cause.

'However, our priority must be to ensure that the new online system is running smoothly and has been thoroughly tested, before we launch it, so that teething problems are minimised.

'We are grateful to the profession for bearing with us as we complete this work - it will pay major dividends, both in streamlining the processes for law firms, and in reducing the SRA’s costs.'

For the latest information, visit the website.