The CLC recently made an application to the Legal Services Board to amend the CLC rules. In essence practices will have to show their fees and costs on their website (if they have one). They will be required, on their website to inform clients of their right to complain and how to complain to the Legal Ombudsman, the process and timescales. They will also have to outline the key stages in the transaction and the mix and qualifications of their staff who deal with Conveyancing and Probate. Referral fees will also need to be highlighted on practices websites.
The SRA has made a similar application to the Legal Services Board which means the whole of the profession will need to meet these new requirements. The changes aim to provide better transparency and more information for consumers to empower them to make more informed decisions about their choice of legal service provider.
A summary of the application by the CLC and SRA can be seen here.
The CLC states that “The changes aim to provide better transparency and more information for consumers to empower them to make more informed decisions about their choice of legal service provider. The new requirements should also foster innovation and competition in the legal services market whilst having minimal impact on the regulatory burden on the profession”.
Easy convey assures that their systems will be updated and compliant by the end of December to meet these new requirements. Peter Oakes of easy convey comments: “All practices’ websites will need to be brought in line with the new regulations by the end of the year. As there is an emphasis placed on making the fees, cost and disbursements of a transaction transparent time should be spent on making clear what sets them apart from their competition. Points to consider would be a feedback routine on their site showing clients overall rating of their service and specific comments, recommendations received directly from past clients and areas of specialisation.”
Peter Oakes, Co-founder of easy convey