The Institute of Professional Will Writers has appointed a solicitor to be its first chief executive, as part of a radical overhaul of the organisation that it hopes will involve licensing legal services businesses.
The Chartered Institute of Legal Executives and Council for Licensed Conveyancers have thrown their hats into the ring to regulate will-writers, amid further criticism of the Legal Services Board’s decision not to extend regulation to estate administration.
The Legal Services Board (LSB) will today formally recommend to the Lord Chancellor that will-writing – but not estate administration – should be regulated legal work. The LSB had initially intended to include estate administration.
Consumers, solicitors and will-writers have united to condemn the Legal Services Board’s decision not to recommend to the government that estate administration become a regulated activity. However, chartered accountants have welcomed it.
The reservation of will-writing and estate administration should boost the amount of work and allow existing providers such as solicitors to become more competitive, the Legal Services Board said today as it laid out how the regime will work.
A will-writing and probate services company in Birmingham has become the latest alternative business structure, and only the second licensed by the Council for Licensed Conveyancers.
A Buckinghamshire-based will-writing company has today become the latest recipient of an alternative business structure licence. Parchment Wills & Legal Services Ltd of Gerrards Cross is a founder member of the Institute of Professional Willwriters.
Four bodies have already put themselves forward to regulate will-writers following the Legal Services Board’s proposal that will-writing become a reserved legal activity, with all making their intentions clear at this week’s Legal Futures conference.
The Legal Ombudsman is to float the idea of extending its jurisdiction so as to handle complaints against will-writers, in a bid to ease the problems faced by consumers who think they are regulated, Legal Futures can report.
The Society of Will Writers is stepping up efforts to position itself as the regulator of the industry by introducing compliance checks against its new code of practice. The SWW is the largest will-writing body with 2,000 members.