Standards and Regulations

Our new Standards and Regulations come into effect on 25 November 2019. Learn more about what their introduction means.

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Whether you work in a big or small firm, in-house or want to work outside a regulated law firm, all solicitors must follow certain rules and meet high ethical standards.

Our shorter, simpler Standards and Regulations focus on high professional standards and protecting the public. They also put more trust in your professional judgment and give you more choices over how and where you work.

If you are a solicitor, you should:

The below resources cover key areas of change compared to the existing/previous SRA Handbook. Wider guidance on other issues is also available.

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If you are an SRA-regulated law firm you must follow our rules.

Our shorter Standards and Regulations focus on high professional standards and protecting the public. With simpler, less prescriptive rules, we have cut unnecessary bureaucracy making it easier for you to run your business.

If you are a law firm, you should:

The below resources cover key areas of change compared to the existing/previous SRA Handbook. Wider guidance on other issues is also available.

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Our shorter Standards and Regulations focus on what really matters – high professional standards and appropriate public protection.

If you are an in-house solicitor our new rules could offer you greater flexibility in how you work. For instance, it will be easier for you to do pro-bono work. And in-house solicitors will be able to offer non-reserved legal services to external third parties.  

If you are an in-house solicitor, you will need to:

Below is a range of support and guidance to help you adapt to our changes.

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Our new Accounts Rules focus on what really matters – keeping client money safe. Our changes mean they are:

  • shorter, with a simpler definition of client money
  • less prescriptive, with the removal of arbitrary timescales
  • more flexible, trusting you to act in your clients’ best interests.

Before the new Rules come into effect, you need to make sure you:

The below resources highlight a range of support and guidance to help you adapt to the change.

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Our shorter Standards and Regulations focus on what really matters – high professional standards and appropriate public protection, while making it easier for the public to access the legal help they need.

If you are a solicitor, you will have the option to work in new ways. This includes being an:

If you decide you want to work in one of these ways, you should make sure you understand:

  • the different types of services you can offer, and the requirements for you to work in this way. For instance, what insurance or experience you might need, and the rules around holding client money.
  • what you need to tell your clients. For instance, being clear about the way you are working and the protections this brings.
  • if relevant, what your employer needs to know. For instance, your employer is vicariously liable for your actions, and will want to consider how best your work as a solicitor is covered.

Wherever you work, solicitors need to follow our rules and work to high professional standards as set out in our Principles and Code of conduct for solicitors.

The below resources offer support if you want to work in new ways.

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