The Court of Appeal has overturned a ruling which excused from liability a law firm which was duped into releasing £150,000 of mortgage funds. It found that the failings of the firm involved in departing from usual conveyancing practice were unreasonable.
Countrywide Conveyancing Services – an alternative business structure (ABS) that is one of the country’s largest conveyancing outfits – has issued a statement of its intent to grow by buying another leading property law firm.
A privately run portal that will centralise conveyancing panel member firms’ information on behalf of participating mortgage lenders, is gearing up for launch amid controversy fuelled by Law Society reservations about the scheme.
The In-Deed conveyancing brand has been acquired by the owner of an online property panel – the final step in the dissolution of the country’s first alternative business structure (ABS) failure.
Scottish conveyancers have voted against the introduction of separate representation for borrowers and lenders – having initially called for it. At an SGM of the Law Society of Scotland yesterday, 847 were against a rule change to the conflict of interest rules while 671 were in favour.
Scotland’s largest law firm conveyancer has entered the separate representation debate, critiquing the move as “politically motivated, opportunistic, regressive” and “anti-competitive”, and a “calamity” for solicitors and consumers.
The country’s first alternative business structure and largest conveyancing business revealed strong annual results yesterday. Premier Property Lawyers – which became an ABS on 6 October 2011 – is part of My Home Move, which also has a panel management operation.
The Law Society’s conveyancing quality scheme and lender-specific requirements amount to double regulation of lawyers and there needs to be a sector-wide effort to resolve the problem, the Council for Licensed Conveyancers has urged.
Countrywide plc has reported a “promising first half trading performance” for its conveyancing division, with income up 4% and earnings 12%. Countrywide Property Lawyers is an alternative business structure regulated by the Council for Licensed Conveyancers.
Lender panels, rather than alternative business structures (ABSs), are the main threat to conveyancing businesses, new research has found. Interest among conveyancers in becoming an ABS also appears to be falling.