Law Society blog
Welcome to the Law Society blog, where you will find updates from our president and our CEO, plus pieces that showcase work from around the organisation to highlight the expertise of our staff and wider network.
15 February 2017
Keiley Ann Broadhead was homeless at 16 and lived in a hostel during her A-Levels. 12 years later, she is a qualified and award-winning in-house solicitor. She explains how the Law Society's Diversity Access Scheme helped her achieve her dream
10 February 2017
With cases of exploitation thrusting UK employment law into the spotlight, Nick Denys looks at how the system can be made fairer for all. Reading time: 2 minutes
08 February 2017
Three new apprenticeship schemes have opened up new routes into the legal profession. Jessie Barwick looks at the advantages for apprentices, firms and the legal profession.
07 February 2017
Alexandra Cardenas looks at the progression of the Brexit bill and the government’s consultation on soft tissue injury claims.
02 February 2017
The Panama Papers leak exposed the most common weakest link in law firms' cybersecurity: its people. Mark Leiser looks at what firms can learn from the scandal.
01 February 2017
The legal sector is playing a key role in shaping the upcoming negotiations for exiting the EU. Robert Bourns considers priorities for the profession during this period of transition.
30 January 2017
The Supreme Court hands down judgment in the article 50 case, the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill is introduced, and Mikaël Laurens gives evidence to the International Trade Select Committee.
25 January 2017
More and more solicitors are suffering from stress at work, potentially affecting both their own wellbeing and the productivity of their businesses. Rita Oscar offers her top tips for managing stress in the legal profession.
24 January 2017
Robert Bourns considers the Competition and Markets Authority report on competition in the legal services market, developments on the SRA handbook and Solicitors Qualifying Examination, and potential changes to professional indemnity insurance.
23 January 2017
The prime minister rules out continued membership of the single market, the LASPO Post-Implementation Review is announced and the Law Society anticipates the Supreme Court judgement on Article 50.
17 January 2017
Alexandra Cardenas discusses Brexit, briefing parliamentarians and the Law Society's work on small claims.
12 January 2017
Robert Bourns reflects on the strengths of the legal sector and encourages solicitors to take pride in their work and speak up for their profession.
11 January 2017
As the dust clears after the EU referendum, we face the challenge of how to separate the shared UK/EU legal framework. And that challenge is truly unprecedented, says Ignasi Guardans.
05 January 2017
In the first in a series on the key issues concerning solicitors in 2017, Robert Bourns looks at threats to access to justice.
04 January 2017
Hayley Stewart of communications agency DTW, explains how you can use the Law Society's solicitor brand campaign to promote your firm this new year.
21 December 2016
You might think that your deep knowledge of your subject matter and your great discursive skills equip you to write content marketing for your firm. But it's not as simple as it seems, says Ben Hollom.
19 December 2016
Alexandra Cardenas looks at ongoing Brexit discussions in her latest report.
14 December 2016
Office Christmas parties can be the highlight of the work social calendar – or minefields for the unwary. So how can you make sure you have a great time without getting yourself in any trouble? Employment lawyer Richard Coulthard explains.
12 December 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the article 50 hearing and the chancellor's first fiscal announcement.
09 December 2016
In a blog to mark Human Rights Day, Sara Chandler looks at what the role of solicitors should be in promoting human rights.
30 November 2016
Steve Deutsch, chief executive of Wesleyan Bank, offers his top five tips to help law firms stay on top of their finances.
28 November 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the latest Brexit developments and looks at legal aid for housing.
28 November 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the Autumn statement and the government's reversal of immigration and asylum fees.
24 November 2016
Kerrie Fuller outlines the Law Society's value proposition project and explains how law firms can get started with their own project, to understand and deliver what their clients want from them.
21 November 2016
Alexandra Cardenas looks at the Autumn statement and Justice Select Committee's annual report.
16 November 2016
If negative comments are made about your firm on social media, how can you manage the conversation to avoid lasting damage to your business? David Gilroy explains.
14 November 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the government's reaction to the article 50 ruling and diversity in law.
09 November 2016
The pro bono advice given by solicitors provides essential support to some of the most vulnerable and stigmatised in society. Caroline Sorbier explains how it helps in one charity Body & Soul, which supports those living with or affected by HIV.
07 November 2016
Robert Bourns discusses National Pro Bono Week and the launch of our Pro Bono Charter.
07 November 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the third reading of the Investigatory Powers Bill and the strengthening of legal professional privilege.
02 November 2016
As British summertime officially ends, some of us may be feeling as gloomy as the weather. Karen Jackson looks at Seasonal Affective Disorder, what you can do if you have it and how employers should support those affected.
31 October 2016
Alexandra Cardenas takes a look at the discussions in parliament focusing debates on Brexit and legislative scrutiny of bills in both houses.
26 October 2016
Richard Heinrich looks at how you can increase morale and productivity by making small, simple changes to your office environments.
24 October 2016
Alexandra Cardenas takes a look at the report stage debates on the Investigatory Powers Bill.
19 October 2016
In his second instalment of his diary of a start-up family law firm, Robin Charrot shares the lessons learned from Evolve’s first year.
17 October 2016
Alexandra Cardenas takes a look at the latest Brexit-related events and the implications for the UK justice system.
10 October 2016
On World Mental Health Day, Elizabeth Rimmer discusses how solicitors can look after their wellbeing.
07 October 2016
Alexandra Cardenas provides an overview of the topics discussed at the Conservative Party Conference.
06 October 2016
A solicitor's career hinges on their ability to win work. Douglas McPherson suggests five alternative options for those that don't like formal networking.
30 September 2016
Alexandra Cardenas provides an overview of the topics discussed at the Labour Party Conference.
29 September 2016
Andrew Kidd explains why it is essential that the legal profession adapts to the way clients wish to consume legal services.
23 September 2016
Alexandra Cardenas provides an overview of the Law Society's activities at the Liberal Democrat Conference.
22 September 2016
In advance of Black History Month, Jerry Garvey and Barbara Whitehorne consider issues around diversity in the legal profession, and explain what the Law Society is doing to help.
16 September 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses new proposals to reform the courts system and the government's plan for the renegotiation of a deal with the EU.
15 September 2016
Jayne Willetts outlines concerns about the SRA's consultation on proposals which may deregulate the legal market.
09 September 2016
As part of Remember A Charity Week, Rob Cope discusses the importance of reminding clients about charitable donations in their wills.
09 September 2016
Alexandra Cardenas provides an overview of the lord chancellor's first session of Justice Oral Questions and looks at priorities for her department.
02 September 2016
Richard Heinrich looks at the seven deadly sins of writing legal documents.
26 August 2016
Rachel Brushfield explains the role that effective internal communication plays in building employee engagement, and provides a host of tips for employers.
19 August 2016
Matthew Still considers the relationship between ownership and operation for UK legal services.
12 August 2016
Richard Roberts details the warning signs of financial abuse of the elderly, what practitioners should look out for, and the steps they can take where such abuse is exposed.
08 August 2016
Robert Bourns discusses modern slavery and how law firms can advise clients on human rights.
04 August 2016
Karen Jackson discusses the curse of connectivity and how to switch off when on holiday.
28 July 2016
Robert Bourns discusses how changes to the SRA Handbook would dilute client protections.
22 July 2016
Alexandra Cardenas details the swearing in of Liz Truss, the first female lord chancellor, and highlights other new legal ministerial briefs.
21 July 2016
Emily Miller and Susan Kench explore LinkedIn's value for solicitors, and offer some tips on how to improve your profile.
15 July 2016
Alexandra Cardenas considers the new prime minister's key ministerial appointments following the EU referendum and Conservative party reshuffle.
14 July 2016
Robert Bourns reflects on the start of his presidency, and discusses our new Pride in the profession campaign.
08 July 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the fallout from the Brexit result on the EU referendum, and the resulting Conservative Party leadership contest.
07 July 2016
Elizabeth Rimmer explains why wellbeing strategies are essential in every organisation, and what LawCare can do to help solicitors in need.
01 July 2016
Alexandra Cardenas considers how and when the next prime minister will start the official proceedings of Britain's withdrawal from the EU, and reports on the second reading of the Investigatory Powers Bill.
30 June 2016
Kevin Poulter reflects on the Pride in London parade, and discusses equality for the LGBT community.
30 June 2016
In the last video of the president's blog series, Jonathan Smithers shares the successes of the past 12 months. Hear about the steps that were taken with the criminal courts charges, the Law Society's exploration of technology across the profession and watch the short tribute compilation of his highlights.
24 June 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the outcomes of the EU referendum.
23 June 2016
Jonathan Smithers explains how artificial intelligence has permeated our lives and considers the consequences for the legal profession.
17 June 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the Policing and Crime Bill and considers a question around the independence of the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
16 June 2016
Sarah Crowe considers the issues around coming out as LGBT in the workplace and provides some tips for law firms.
10 June 2016
While many government departments languish in purdah, the parliamentary debate around the Investigatory Powers Bill continues. Alexandra Cardenas considers the issues.
09 June 2016
In the third instalment on emotional health for solicitors, Julian Hall takes a look at the relationship between emotional resilience and self-esteem.
03 June 2016
LHS Solicitors discuss the growth of AI and the impact it will have on the legal profession.
02 June 2016
Artificial intelligence (AI) and the Modern Transport Bill are among the topics discussed in this month's review by the president, Jonathan Smithers. Watch his blog to also find out about the latest international engagements, the London Legal Walk 2016 and to learn about our upcoming conference during London Technology Week this June.
27 May 2016
Alexandra Cardenas considers the intensification of EU referendum and discusses the Treasury's apparent efforts to avert it.
25 May 2016
Caroline Roddis discusses the Law Society Insights community and explains how you can get involved.
20 May 2016
Alexandra Cardenas considers reactions to the Queen's Speech, and outlines the main points of interest to the legal profession.
19 May 2016
As part of Mental Health Awareness Week, Karen Jackson discusses how stress affects the mind and body and considers ways for law firms to manage the issue.
18 May 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the points of interest relevant to the legal sector that were mentioned in the Queen's speech.
17 May 2016
As part of the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (#IDAHOT), Duncan Wood outlines some top tips to help law firms ensure that they are inclusive places to work.
13 May 2016
Alexandra Cardenas considers the parliamentary debate on the European Convention of Human Rights and discusses the Anti-Corruption Summit.
12 May 2016
As part of Dying Matters Awareness Week, Gary Rycroft writes about what happens to your digital assets after death, and how to protect them.
06 May 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the Anti-Corruption Summit 2016, where MPs stated that the UK needs to lead by example to drive out corruption.
05 May 2016
Laura Devine discusses how winning the Excellence Award for Woman Lawyer of the Year has made a difference to her firm.
05 May 2016
The proposed plans to increase tribunal fees, the success of the Rights of Women legal challenge and progress on the UN Business and Human Rights principles - these are just a few of the highlighted issues in this month's president's blog.
29 April 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the home secretary's speech on Brexit and considers questions over legal aid and clinical negligence.
27 April 2016
Bob Nightingale explains how London’s solicitors are helping the poorest and most vulnerable people in the region.
22 April 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the legal aid residence test and the judicial review challenge to domestic violence evidence requirements.
20 April 2016
As many know, a review of the governance of the Law Society is underway. We are keen to hear from our members as we consider any changes, writes vice president Robert Bourns.
15 April 2016
Alexandra Cardenas considers the events around the Panama Papers and provides an update on European Referendum debate.
14 April 2016
Annaliese Fiehn writes about the Law Society's Excellence Awards and explains the nomination process.
08 April 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the changes to the evidence requirements for victims of domestic violence and provides an update on the Investigatory Powers Bill.
06 April 2016
Andy Harris looks at the results of this year's Financial Benchmarking Survey.
04 April 2016
With parliament in recess, Alexandra Cardenas highlights the latest legal aid statistics and provides an update on court closures.
31 March 2016
Law Society president Jonathan Smithers reveals the acclaimed keynote speaker for this year's Excellence Awards. He also discusses the Budget's implications for solicitors and outlines his thoughts on artificial intelligence in the legal sector (duration 3:30 seconds).
31 March 2016
Stuart Poole-Robb discusses a new threat to law firms' IT systems and provides some top tips to prevent attacks from occurring.
24 March 2016
Kayleigh Leonie asks whether the offer of a cheaper route into the profession is too good to be true.
24 March 2016
Alexandra Cardenas considers Iain Duncan Smith's surprise resignation and the subsequent mini reshuffle.
18 March 2016
Alexandra Cardenas outlines the topline figures from the Budget announcement and provides an update on the Investigatory Powers Bill.
17 March 2016
In the first instalment of a new series, Robin Charrot reflects on the early stages of setting up his law firm and provides practical advice for those who are considering doing the same.
11 March 2016
Alexandra Cardenas considers the rumours that Michael Gove may become the lead campaigner for the 'Leave' campaign in the EU referendum.
08 March 2016
For International Women's Day, Julie Ashdown and Leah Glover outline their views on how the legal sector can progress gender parity and support women.
07 March 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the Home Office's newly-published Investigatory Powers Bill and the Cabinet Office's report on potential post-Brexit EU relationship models.
02 March 2016
Robert Bourns considers different career paths taken by four in-house lawyers, and looks at what lessons can be learned from their experiences.
29 February 2016
Richard Messingham considers the latest political manoeuvrings following the Prime Minister's EU negotiations.
25 February 2016
This month, Jonathan Smithers updates you on the government's consultation on separating regulators from representative bodies, the Ministry of Justice court closures, his recent appearance in front of the justice select committee, and the end of two-tier criminal legal aid contracts.
24 February 2016
Vanessa Friend reflects on two life changes in one year, and provides some tips for other women in similar situations.
19 February 2016
Richard Messingham discusses the EU renegotiations and looks ahead to the next European Council summit.
17 February 2016
Jerry Garvey considers some common misconceptions about the Law Society’s Council and provides three case studies of Council members from diverse backgrounds.
12 February 2016
Alexandra Cardenas discusses the much-opposed proposed court closures and considers the issue of court fees.
11 February 2016
Kerrie Fuller explains how excellent customer service is the key to growing your business.
05 February 2016
Richard Messingham outlines the hurdles faced by the government over the British Bill of Rights and considers speculation that it is being delayed by the wait for clarity on the EU renegotiations.
04 February 2016
In the second installment on emotional health for solicitors, Julian Hall takes a look at the behaviours that undermine our sense of wellbeing.
29 January 2016
Richard Messingham considers the scrapping of the controversial duty contracts scheme for criminal legal aid.
28 January 2016
In the first video blog of the year, Law Society president Jonathan Smithers welcomes our first major report on the future of legal services, aimed at helping members and their clients. He also discusses representing the profession at the opening of the legal year in Hong Kong and Malaysia and congratulates the latest QC appointees.
26 January 2016
Adele Edwin-Lamerton, social mobility ambassador for the Law Society, writes about her path into the law.
22 January 2016
Richard Messingham considers Labour's latest initiative and outlines the details of a Westminster Hall debate on access to justice for vulnerable people.
20 January 2016
Larry Cattle considers how personal injury solicitors should rethink their strategy to mitigate the impact of the change to the small-claims limit.
15 January 2016
Richard Messingham considers Catherine McKinnell MP's resignation, and the continuing campaign to leave the EU.
14 January 2016
As part of #FamilyMediationWeek, Tracey O'Dwyer provides an overview of the benefits of mediation, and addresses some common concerns.
08 January 2016
Richard Messingham reflects on the reshuffle within the Labour party and the divisive issue of the EU referendum.
08 January 2016
Personal information is the most valuable commodity on the globe, argues Nick Podd. Here he considers the issues around cybersecurity and outlines how law firms can take responsibility for the security of their clients' data.
18 December 2015
Jonathan Smithers sees in the holiday period by discussing International Human Rights Day, the successful reversal of the criminal court charges and the regulation of legal services review by HM Treasury.See how you can get involved and hear about the latest developments.
18 December 2015
Richard Messingham reflects on prime minister David Cameron's negotiations over the UK's membership of the EU.
17 December 2015
Alex Barr writes about how your opening gambit at parties can influence your bottom line.
11 December 2015
Richard Messingham discusses the government's problems around the EU Referendum Bill, and also provides a summary of the activity on International Human Rights Day.
10 December 2015
Preetha Gopalan, an associate at Oslwang LLP, writes about her experience of working with young people to increase their understanding of the law.
04 December 2015
Richard Messingham provides an overview of the activity around the Syria debate and the lord chancellor's announcements this week.
03 December 2015
Julian Hall takes a look at the key personal qualities that help us navigate stress and provides some tips on developing emotional resilience.
27 November 2015
Richard Messingham provides an overview of the activity around the Autumn Statement, and also looks at legal aid, court closures and the Investigatory Powers Bill.
26 November 2015
Jonathan Smithers shares how you can find out more about how we will be representing, promoting and supporting members following the launch of our new strategy.He also talks about the latest updates on the recommended minimum salary for trainee solicitors, criminal legal aid duty contracts and the justice committee's report on the criminal courts charge.
25 November 2015
Markus Coleman explains the three simple steps to effective knowledge management for your firm.
20 November 2015
Law Society chief executive Catherine Dixon summarises the Society's new strategy.
20 November 2015
Richard Messingham discusses the possibility of the government fast tracking the draft Investigatory Powers Bill into law.
13 November 2015
Richard Messingham considers the difficult choices ahead for both George Osborne and David Cameron.
11 November 2015
Sarah Austin reflects on her background and discusses her contribution to the Supreme Court's Magna Carta exhibition.
09 November 2015
As part of #EqualPayDay, Asif Afridi and Roseanne Russell consider the gender pay gap and look at the legal framework that outlines employers' responsibilities.
06 November 2015
Amy Heading, UK Pro Bono Manager & Counsel (Senior Associate) at DLA Piper, considers whether the current trends transforming the legal industry can also reshape pro bono practices at City firms.
06 November 2015
Richard Messingham reflects on a week when the home secretary Theresa May managed to steer clear of significant controversy when she introduced some long awaited changes to the law on investigatory powers.
04 November 2015
Sarah Henchoz, partner at Allen & Overy, discusses the challenges and rewards of pro bono work.
02 November 2015
*Latin for: do pro bono!Martin Barnes, chief executive of LawWorks, explains the significance of National Pro Bono Week and outlines how pro bono work contributes to access to justice.
30 October 2015
Richard Messingham reflects on a busy week in parliament, with discussion on various pieces of legislation including tax credits, the British Bill of Rights and the Immigration Bill.
29 October 2015
Philippa Southwell outlines some common indicators to identify victims of forced criminality and human trafficking, and explains what to do to help such individuals when representing them.
29 October 2015
Jonathan Smithers reflects on his first 100 days and the annual Law Society Excellence Awards that took place on 22 October. He also discusses problems with criminal legal aid contracts.Looking forward to the month ahead, he talks about the impact that solicitors’ pro bono work has, as National Pro Bono Week takes place during the first week of November.
23 October 2015
Matthew Still outlines the forthcoming changes to CPD and considers the consequences of neglecting lifelong training.
23 October 2015
Richard Messingham looks ahead to the release of the Investigatory Powers Bill, and considers the issues it brings up around legal professional privilege.
16 October 2015
Richard Messingham anticipates a highly active legislative period between now and Christmas now that parliament has returned, and provides an overview of the activity around the Immigration Bill.
13 October 2015
Julie Ashdown, head of Corporate Responsibility, Equality and Diversity, discusses the Law Society's new mentoring programme and explains how to sign up.
09 October 2015
Richard Messingham considers the end of the party conference season and looks ahead to the return of parliament.
08 October 2015
Catherine Dixon, Law Society chief executive, outlines the Society's latest work on economic modelling of the impact of a possible UK exit from the European Union on the legal services sector.
02 October 2015
Richard Messingham outlines the Law Society's activity at the Conservative party conference, and provides an overview of the key policy debates, developments and announcements.
30 September 2015
Jonathan Smithers welcomes in the opening of the legal year and shares the highlights of the month to come.He also discusses the launch of our business and human rights programme and provides an update on court fees and the SRA's response to our consumer credit consultation.
25 September 2015
Richard Messingham provides an update of the Law Society's undertakings at the Lib Dem and UKIP party conferences, as well as a more detailed review of the day-to-day activity.
24 September 2015
Emma Maule, Law Society social media officer, considers some of the key takeaways from Social Media Week London and provides top tips for firms to enhance their online presence.
18 September 2015
Richard Messingham reflects on the new Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, and provides a précis of the Law Society's party conference activity.
17 September 2015
Sarah Smith outlines the range of human rights activity carried out at the Law Society, and explains how you can get involved.
11 September 2015
Richard Messingham introduces the first of a series of blogs focusing on political updates, parliamentary briefings, and what's going on in Westminster.
10 September 2015
David Yeoward explains why it is important to have and to stick to a bid process, and outlines three easy steps to winning new clients.
04 September 2015
Meena Toor, Law Society multimedia editor, provides some top tips to promote your firm's website and make your content stand out from the crowd.
27 August 2015
In the second instalment of the president's video blog, Jonathan Smithers discusses our action in response to the latest government proposals to increase court fees and close 91 courts and tribunals.He talks about how our interactive map has been received by the media and how it’s helping us form our consultation response. Jonathan also shares his feedback on international conferences with law societies and bar associations in the US and Canada.
21 August 2015
Mark Carver outlines shifts in conveyancing fees and associated risk from a PII perspective, based on a new report.
13 August 2015
Emma Maule, social media officer at the Law Society, provides some essential tips to get you tweeting like a pro.
06 August 2015
To make sure we meet our members' needs, we are developing our new strategy for the Law Society. We have launched a simple survey, which asks you about each of our draft strategic aims. Please take a moment to give us your thoughts. The survey closes on 11 September.
30 July 2015
Julie Nicholds discusses the steps you can take to identify, manage and retain the talent in your business.
23 July 2015
Executive coach and former lawyer Anne Waldron offers practical tips for successful team development.
23 July 2015
In this video, the president discusses mass data retention legislation, proposals to change the way solicitors qualify, the UK-China law programme, court closures and criminal legal aid.
16 July 2015
Tom Ellen examines the Law Society Library’s archive of historical artefacts as part of the #archivemonth it is celebrating on Twitter, and also outlines the services it offers to members.
09 July 2015
It is both an honour and privilege to become the 171st president of the Law Society of England and Wales. There is a tradition for each president to present to the Law Society’s Council a ‘Presidential Plan’, setting out my priorities for next year. You can see my plan on the website, so please take a look if you have a moment. There are three main areas which will be the focus of my presidency: the rule of law, access to justice and conveyancing and land law.
08 July 2015
Welcome to our new blog. Our staff and wider networks have a wealth of knowledge about specialist topics that we’re going to showcase here. Through the frequent provision of useful and concise information, advice and commentary, we hope to support our members’ everyday legal practice and their professional life.