The 1,300 law firms who have their professional indemnity insurance with Balva face the prospect of having four weeks to find new cover if the winding-up process the Latvian company started yesterday becomes an “insolvency event”, the Solicitors Regulation Authority has warned.
Eight members of Law Society committees have been kicked off for failing to undergo mandatory equality and diversity training, it has emerged. All members of boards and committees had a 30 April 2013 deadline to undergo the training.
The Co-operative Legal Services has disassociated itself from comments made by its sales and marketing director that putting consumers at the heart of what they do is “alien” to solicitors, after complaints by the Law Society.
The Solicitors Regulation Authority needs to consider alternatives to intervening in failing law firms, the Law Society has said, while accepting the “emergency” need for the regulator to dip into the Compensation Fund to pay for the unexpectedly high cost of interventions this year.
A Law Society survey finding that a growing number of senior solicitors think outcome-focused regulation places too heavy a burden on firms has drawn a rapid rebuttal from the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
The Law Society will launch a paralegal accreditation scheme later this year for non-qualified staff working in organisations regulated by the SRA, it has emerged. It will be for all staff from secretaries to those with an LLB or LLB/LPC and no training contract.
Family lawyers offering unbundled legal services should be wary of charging clients on an hourly basis, the Law Society has warned. It said “this could increase the risk of the retainer being more broadly interpreted”.
Rules strengthening ‘collegiality’ among members of the Law Society council and the way they express dissent are to be voted on this month. Changes to the code of conduct for council members also seek to impose collective responsibility on chairs of the society’s various boards.
Property lawyer Jonathan Smithers has won the five-way election to become the next deputy vice-president of the Law Society. Mr Smithers’ election means that from July the Law Society office-holders will all be high street solicitors.
Two-thirds of law firms saw their professional indemnity insurance premiums go down last year, with switching insurers the most common way of securing it, Law Society figures have revealed. The society has also warned that under-pressure small firms are risking their future by going with unrated providers.