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Board asked to approve in-house solicitor rules

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has applied to the Legal Services Board for approval of amendments to its Practice Framework Rules (PFR) to help clarify the position of in-house solicitors when providing services to third parties.

Although in-house solicitors usually provide legal services to their employer, many also act for other clients and the PFR set out the circumstances in which this may be done. The Legal Services Act requires bodies to be authorised in circumstances where, as a part of their business, they are providing reserved legal activities to the public or a section of the public.

The SRA proposed amendments to the PFR to clarify for employers and in-house solicitors, the relationship between the SRA's regulatory requirements on in-house solicitors and the requirements of the Legal Services Act. The amendments will cover previous transitional arrangements which were put in place for the same purpose before the launch of the SRA Handbook on 6 October, 2011.

Consultation on the proposals ran for four weeks over March and April. Go to the consultation and report on the responses.

The SRA's Board agreed to make the proposals when it met on Wednesday 16 May. The SRA will be undertaking a broader review of its approach to the regulation of in-house solicitors later in the year.

Further details on this review will be published in due course. 

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