The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has announced a complete overhaul of its handbook following its consultation 'Looking to the future: flexibility and public protection', which marks a new, less prescriptive approach to regulation.
Key changes include:
- removing restrictions on where solicitors can practise
- a new set of principles
- two separate codes of conduct for solicitors and firms
- a shorter handbook.
The SRA believes the changes will offer solicitors more freedom and flexibility in the way they choose to practise. However, the Law Society is concerned that the changes will leave clients and consumers with less protection and could result in a 'two-tier' solicitor profession.