The Legal Services Board has shied away from recommending a single solution which all the legal regulators should follow on indemnity insurance. The LSB instead called on the regulators to work more closely together on the issue.
The Law Society and Council for Licensed Conveyancers have clashed plans by the Solicitors Regulation Authority to make it easier for law firms to switch regulator. The society warned that clients could be left without proper cover.
The Council of Licensed Conveyancers has announced its intention to apply to the Legal Services Board to approve the introduction of a solicitor-style open market indemnity scheme. The move has triggered warnings that law firms may switch regulator from the Solicitors Regulation Authority to the CLC for the wrong reasons.
The Council for Licensed Conveyancers (CLC) is planning to introduce solicitor-style indemnity insurance arrangements, in a bid to make it easier for law firms to switch regulator. Embracing an open market scheme instead of a master policy would help “make a reality” of the “theoretical” freedom of law firms to change.
More than one in five law firms have been targeted by scammers in the past year, Law Society research has revealed. Money was successfully stolen from client account in 8% of these cases. However the society’s annual indemnity survey found that average premiums paid by firms with up to 25 partners were down by 8%.
A sole practitioner who refused to close his firm after failing to find indemnity insurance has been struck off and ordered to pay £20,000 costs. The Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal described Anthony Alabi as having a “cavalier attitude to regulation”.
Elite Insurance, one of only three unrated indemnity insurers of law firms and the only one based in Britain, announced yesterday that it is leaving the market. Elite cited increased risks of client account fraud and the government’s planned increase to the small claims limit as reasons for the move.
SDT unhappy with SRA again after finding that “misguided” partner did not act dishonestly over insurance
The Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal has again criticised the way the Solicitors Regulation Authority prosecuted a case against a solicitor, after deciding that a partner who had a “genuine but misguided” belief about the status of one of his employees had not acted dishonestly in what he told his insurer.
Personal injury, commercial and family work will all fuel negligence claims against lawyers, insurance specialist BLM has warned in a white paper. It also predicted that a new source of claims could come from the “rapid pace of reform” in legal services, testing new systems and processes “to their limit”.
Law firms that switch regulator should not be forced to buy six years of run-off insurance cover, CILEx Regulation has argued in a report for the Legal Services Board. It said that only firms which were actually closing should have to buy run-off cover.