The toll of firms failing to renew professional indemnity insurance continues to rise, with another 34 people losing their jobs after home counties firm Hilliers HRW LLP called in administrators.
Hilliers HRW had offices in Kempston, Bedfordshire and Stevenage, Hertfordshire. Prior to the appointment of administrators, all existing client work in progress was transferred to several other local firms: Kimbells Freeth, Gisby Harrison, Davidson Smith, Friss & Radstone, JMP Solicitors and Tollers.
Tony Wright, partner at FRP Advisory and one of the joint administrators, confirmed that the decision to place the practice into administration was necessary due to its inability to secure professional indemnity insurance cover.
After the extended indemnity period of 30 days, the firm entered the cessation period of 60 days, which is due to expire on 29 December. “During this cessation period, the partners and management team of Hilliers HRW have ensured all ongoing work has been passed over to other firms of solicitors, always with the clients’ best interests in mind,” he said.
FRP Advisory has retained seven staff from Hilliers HRW during the administration process to assist in dealing with file closures, general administrative matters, client queries, debt collection and the transmission of client funds to ensure the orderly wind down is fully compliant with the requirements of the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).
He added: “Hilliers HRW has supported a long serving client base in Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and neighbouring regions across the south east of England and we wish the very best for its clients under the care of new sets of solicitors.”
The SRA confirmed yesterday that there were still 117 practices operating in the extended policy period, and they now have just 10 days either to secure insurance or close down.