News releases

Fourth version of SRA Handbook goes live

Version 4 of the Solicitors Regulation Authority's Handbook has now gone live.

The latest alterations have been approved by the Legal Services Board after being put forward from the SRA Board meeting in May.

David Hackett, Regulation Policy Manager, said: "The web-based nature of the Handbook makes it even more user-friendly, allowing those in the regulated community to see how the Code of Conduct evolves in our new era of outcomes-focused regulation. It’s the virtual nature of the Handbook’s which means we now refer to new versions instead of editions, which is specific to printed copies.”

Changes to the handbook include

  • alterations to the Practice Framework Rules to accommodate in-house solicitors,
  • notifications for the Quality Assurance Scheme for Advocates,
  • changes to the COLP-COFA approval dates.

The online version has a "history of" facility, so users can compare updates to previous copies of the Handbook. It also allows users to see clearly any rules that have been approved by the LSB but that are yet to come into force.

The web version has been designed to be as easy to use as possible, and includes advanced search options that allow specific sections to be looked at, a quick guide to the Handbook itself and the ability to print only those sections that are needed, rather than all 500-plus pages.

The online features include an SRA Handbook Glossary, which contains all terms used throughout the Handbook in italics, and sets out their definitions. This allows online users simply to "click" on an italicised word to view the definition. The current Handbook underpins the SRA's introduction of outcomes-focused regulation.

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