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Conveyancing: Who Cares If Solicitors Act For Both Sides, As Long As It Is Quicker?

View profile for Paul Hajek
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Licensed Conveyancers do it, educated bees do it, and soon it is possible that Conveyancing solicitors will be able to do it.

That is: act for both sides in a Conveyancing transaction.

So says the Legal Services Consumer Panel (they should know as it takes two to quango)

The Panel wants the SRA to scrap the conduct provisions which currently restrict Conveyancing Solicitors from acting for both seller and buyer, unless it is in very restricted circumstances.

The Panel wants the rule replaced or rather to be caught under the existing general conflict rule.

MyHomeMove a legal services marketing firm carried out research back in 2007 and noted that when their Licensed Conveyancer firms acted on both sides the average time to exchange came down from 81 days to 52 days

The panel are of the opinion that such a relaxation of the rule would “minimise inconvenience caused by exchanges of correspondence and reduce avoidable cost”. It concludes that "licensed Conveyancers have long been permitted to act for both sides apparently without any problems”

There would certainly be many firms of Conveyancing solicitors who would welcome being able to compete on a level playing field with Licensed Conveyancers.

I know there may be many other factors to consider and a simple yes or no may be completely unscientific, but what do you think?

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