What we are trying to do

We want to provide the profession with clarity on our approach to enforcement, including how and when we would take action against a law firm or solicitor

Who needs to know

Everyone working in a firm we authorise and regulate, and anyone else who may be interested in understanding our approach to enforcement.


What's going on

Enforcement strategy

We have published our new enforcement strategy, which outlines how we decide whether to act in cases of potential misconduct, and what factors we consider in deciding the seriousness of an issue and what action we should take. We are now following this. Although written to accompany the new Standards and Regulations, it applies under our current Handbook rules.

To support this, we have also made public a number of internal reference documents, known as 'topic guides', which summarise the main mitigating and aggravating factors we take into account when considering cases in a number of common areas.

Reporting concerns

We have also published proposed changes to the wording of our rules regarding when firms should report cases of potential misconduct to the regulator. We publicly consulted on these rule changes last year, after it became apparent that law firms were interpreting the existing rules in different ways.

The revised wording makes it clear that firms should apply their professional judgement to decide whether potential misconduct may have taken place and that they should then report the issues as soon as possible.

Standards and Regulations beta version

Our new Standards and Regulations will come into effect on 25 November 2019. Access the new beta version, register to participate and give us your feedback on the experience.

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