SRA backs LSB's bid to protect consumers
23 April 2012
The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has backed the Legal Services Board (LSB) proposal to make will writing and estate administration reserved legal activities.
The LSB has announced it will ask the Lord Chancellor to agree to the plans, which would mean the two activities would be regulated, giving greater protection to consumers. The SRA, which played a part in putting together research which helped inform the proposals and responded to an LSB consultation on the issue, has called for all legal activities to be regulated.
Research carried out by the SRA and its partners last year found that one in four wills assessed failed because they were deemed to be of insufficient quality. Some failed to meet the needs and circumstances of the client, while other were deemed not to be legally valid.
Antony Townsend, Chief Executive of the SRA, said: "We've said for some time that we believe all legal activities should be regulated, so we support this move by the LSB. This should improve standards and provide additional protection for consumers.
"The SRA is willing to undertake the regulation of currently unregulated will-writers, as well as solicitors firms, and to examine how standards of will writing can be improved and better regulated."
The SRA said in November that all legal activities should be reserved when responding to the LSB consultation. This would address the lack of clarity for consumers about which services are regulated, a lack of consistency in consumer protection and a lack of focus on quality, standards and ethical behaviour.
Read the LSB release
Read the SRA's response to the LSB's consultation