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Advice and practice notes

  • Our advice supports members to navigate business challenges and the changing legal and regulatory landscape.

  • Latest advice and practice notes

    Reorganising your business: Employment law implications

    This note will help owners of firms to familiarise themselves with some of the key concepts related to reorganisation.

    25 July 2016
    Practice note

    Execution of a document using an electronic signature

    This practice note has been developed to help parties (and their legal advisers) who wish to execute commercial contracts using an electronic signature.

    21 July 2016
    Practice note

    Professional indemnity insurance

    This practice note has advice on the PII requirements in the current market, how you should apply and how much cover is required.

    18 July 2016
    Practice note

    Estate administration: banking protocols

    This practice note is relevant to any solicitor involved in the administration of estates.

    14 July 2016
    Practice note

    Trust corporations

    This note summarises what a trust corporation is, the requirements for its creation and a number of other matters.

    20 June 2016
    Practice note

    Data protection

    The Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA) regulates the processing of information relating to individuals. Solicitors must comply with the DPA. Failure to do so may constitute a criminal offence. This practice note sets out how solicitors can comp...

    16 June 2016
    Practice note

    PII retirement calculator

    This calculator is designed to assist solicitors to work out an indicative figure that should be saved each year as part of their retirement planning to prepare for the likely cost of run-off cover under their minimum terms and conditions (...

    15 June 2016
    Advice

    Consumer credit regulation

    On 1 April 2014 consumer credit activity became a mainstream financial services activity regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Both the group licensing regime and standard consumer credit licences were abolished.

    15 June 2016
    Practice note

    Powers of attorney for banking

    This practice note provides information about the different powers of attorney that can be used when dealing with a banking institution, to avoid difficulties in evidencing your authority to act on behalf of a donor.

    15 June 2016
    Practice note

    Semi-automated online services

    This practice note looks at the risks for firms and their duties to clients that arise from delivering legal services electronically and online.

    8 June 2016
    Practice note

    Lasting powers of attorney

    This practice note assists solicitors in advising clients regarding lasting powers of attorney.

    7 June 2016
    Practice note

    Representation before mental health tribunals

    This practice note provides advice on good practice for legal practitioners who advise and represent clients at mental health tribunals.

    27 May 2016
    Practice note

    Compliance officers

    The Legal Services Act 2007 requires that a head of legal practice and head of finance and administration are appointed in each ABS. The roles are termed compliance officer for legal practice and compliance officer for finance and administr...

    22 April 2016
    Practice notes

    Contaminated land

    This practice note outlines the environmental liabilities that may arise when dealing with property transactions that involve contaminated land.

    13 April 2016
    Practice note

    Protecting your firm if you fall victim to a scam

    This practice note outlines the regulatory and legal requirements that apply when a firm's client account has fallen victim to scammers.

    12 April 2016
    Practice note

    Virtual court first hearings

    This practice note is for criminal solicitors taking instructions and advising at police stations and at Magistrates' Courts where the virtual first hearing system is in use.

    5 April 2016
    Practice note

    Unbundling civil legal services

    This practice note explains the procedure behind offering unbundled - partial retainer - legal services to clients, and offers advice for avoiding some of the risks involved.

    4 April 2016
    Practice note

    Implementing whistleblowing arrangements

    This practice note is based on a former practice note called 'Raising concerns and whistleblowing', which is now becoming to practice notes.

    24 March 2016
    Practice note

    Closing down your practice: regulatory requirements

    This practice note outlines the regulatory requirements for solicitors to consider when closing down your practice.

    22 March 2016
    Practice note

    Setting up a practice: regulatory requirements

    This practice note outlines the regulatory requirements to consider when setting up your practice.

    21 March 2016
    Practice notes

    The EU Transparency Register

    The purpose of this practice note is to alert you to the new guidance in relation to the CPRs and its implications for practice.

    15 March 2016
    Practice note

    Fiduciary roles and retirement or departure from practice by a private client practitioner

    This practice note aims to assist firms to address the issues that arise when a solicitor, who has held fiduciary roles, retires or departs from a practice.

    14 March 2016
    Practice note

    Criminal Procedure Rules 2015: solicitors’ duties

    This practice note sets out the duties and burdens affecting criminal solicitors arising from the Criminal Procedure Rules 2013 (CPR).

    29 February 2016
    Practice note

    File closure management

    This practice note sets out good practice for managing file closure at the termination of a matter and the need to manage risks inherent in the mismanagement of file administration.

    29 February 2016
    Practice note

    Consumer Protection Regulations in conveyancing

    The purpose of this practice note is to alert you to the new guidance in relation to the CPRs and its implications for practice.

    25 February 2016
    Practice note

    Best Practice guidance: work experience placements

    This guidance represents the Law Society's view of good practice for employers who provide work experience to those seeking experience of a legal career.

    24 February 2016
    Advice

    In-house pro bono practice: regulatory requirements

    This practice note explores the regulatory impediments to in-house solicitors providing pro bono services to the public, with the aim of assisting those in-house solicitors who wish to do so.

    23 February 2016
    Practice note

    Flood risk

    Around 5.2m (one-sixth) of properties in England are at risk of flooding. This practice note advises on flood searches and other means of investigation.

    10 February 2016
    Practice note

    Fair recruitment toolkit

    In this toolkit 'fair recruitment' of trainee solicitors refers to eliminating the barriers people face in employment due to their social background.

    5 February 2016
    Advice

    Continuing Competence Guidance - FAQs

    The Law Society has published FAQs providing useful information to solicitors for moving across and complying with the new SRA scheme for continuing competence.

    3 February 2016
    Advice

    Residual client balances

    This practice note aims to clarify the position relating to the management of unclaimed client funds, and provides an overview of the requirements imposed upon firms under the SRA Accounts Rules 2011 (SAR).

    22 January 2016
    Practice notes

    Protecting your firm if you fall victim to a scam - Archive version

    This practice note outlines the regulatory and legal requirements that apply when a firm's client account has fallen victim to scammers.

    14 January 2016
    Practice note

    Immigration judicial review

    This practice note gives advice on how to handle a client's matter in line with the UK Border Agency's new process for reviewing removal decisions.

    13 January 2016
    Practice note

    Conflicts of interests in criminal cases

    This practice note concerns the particular way in which criminal defence solicitors need to consider the avoidance of conflicts of interest when considering whether it is appropriate to act for more than one suspect or defendant.

    13 January 2016
    Practice note

    Anti-terrorism

    This practice note explains how client confidentiality is affected by the failure to disclose offence provisions in the Terrorism Act 2000.

    13 January 2016
    Practice note

    Raising concerns and whistleblowing - guidance for staff

    There are professional and regulatory obligations for individuals to raise concerns about their firm's actions in certain situations. This note describes how to foster an environment which encourages transparency and the reporting of concer...

    13 January 2016
    Practice note

    Updated guidance on how to comply with the EU Directive on Consumer ADR from October 2015

    The Law Society has updated its advice for firms on compliance with UK regulations which transpose the EU ADR Directive.

    12 January 2016
    Advice

    Protection for client accounts

    This practice note sets out good practise in the event of an authorised deposit taking institution collapse.

    6 January 2016
    Practice note

    Withdrawing from a criminal case

    Issues arise when you are considering either withdrawing from representing a defendant, or taking on a transferred case, close to or in the course of the trial. This practice note provides advice on managing the process.

    21 December 2015
    Practice note

    Criminal plea in absence of sufficient prosecution case information

    This practice note provides information on advising a client on plea in the absence of full disclosure.

    21 December 2015
    Practice note

    Defence witness notices

    This practice note sets out the new obligations and the ethical considerations solicitors should consider when conducting a case involving defence witnesses.

    21 December 2015
    Practice note

    Police interviews involving sign language interpreters

    PACE requires that police interviews with suspects are recorded. You must ensure that interviews with clients who require a sign language interpreter are video recorded. This practice provides advice on how to meet the requirement.

    21 December 2015
    Practice note

    Communication with prisoners by mobile phone

    This practice note is intended to help you avoid the risk of inadvertently committing or procuring the commission of a criminal offence.

    21 December 2015
    Practice note

    Defence costs orders

    Solicitors need to inform clients in criminal cases about the changes to the Defendants' Costs Orders regime.

    21 December 2015
    Practice note

    Deregulation Act 2015: tenancy deposit schemes and landlord obligations

    Our new practice note has advice for housing law and property practitioners representing landlords and tenants.

    17 December 2015
    Practice note

    Launch of Help to Buy: ISA scheme - conveyancing solicitors' role

    Unlike previous Help To Buy schemes, conveyancing solicitors will have a direct role in obtaining bonus funds from the government.

    17 December 2015
    Advice

    Statutory defences available to asylum seekers charged with document offences

    Our new practice note has important advice on the statutory defences available to asylum seekers who may be charged with document offences.

    10 December 2015
    Practice note

    SRA Handbook and approved certificate of title

    Approved certificate of title agreed between the Law Society and the Council of Mortgage Lenders to be used from 30 November 2015.

    27 November 2015
    Advice

    Working with transgender employees

    This practice note is designed to help everyone in your firm to work respectfully with transgender people.

    20 November 2015
    Practice note

    Recommended minimum salary for trainee solicitors

    The Law Society is recommending that providers of training contracts should pay their trainees £20,276 in London and £18,183 outside of London.

    11 November 2015
    Advice
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