LLOYDS CONFIRM REMOVAL OF PANEL SOLICITORS
Letters have now been issued from Lloyds to solicitors in Scotland, intimating removal from the Lloyds panel on the grounds of low turn over. This appears to be volte-face from an earlier assurance that no such removals would take place in Scotland. This has come out of the blue and in apparent contradiction to the position previously understood and announced by the Law Society. It may be that the profession should now approach this issue on collegiate basis giving the significant adverse effects that this policy is likely to have upon the legal profession and also upon the interests of the clients of that profession. For example, one has to consider whether or not the long standing relaxation of the conflict rules which enables solicitors to act for purchaser and lender and which relaxation was created in order to enable the purchaser’s solicitor to act for the mortgage lender, is still appropriate when the economic reality is likely to mean that the mortgage lender will appoint the purchaser’s solicitor. Other first considerations include the issue as to whether one individual, dominant party should be allowed to use that position in order to change substantially the market which is available to the consumer and, indeed, to place such financial barriers in the individual client choice of solicitor as to effectively exclude that choice. Other issues may arise as to where members of the profession might elect to place temporary funds or to direct new mortgage business.
There well may be a need for a widely accessible discussion and this is something which SLAS Council will address very shortly. Please watch this page.
9TH NOVEMBER 2010
I am struggling to find the motivation to remain in the profession. My expulsion yesterday from the conveyancing panel of LBG didn't help. I can actually envisage doing something else but there is some force working on me that is telling me not to give up without a fight. I wrote yesterday to the President at the Society. While I am sure the Society is in breach of section 1 (Solicitors (Scotland) Act 1980) they can swat me aside. Do you think that SLAS could support my complaint?