Are all conveyancers equally professional & should we fear the changes in the wills and probate market?

Are all conveyancers equally professional & should we fear the changes in the wills and probate market?

When it comes to managing a person’s estate, you can consider conveyancing as the starting block, and probate as the finishing point, so in ways they are somewhat comparable.

Over many years various interested parties have argued as to whether solicitors or licensed conveyancers make better property lawyers. We’ve also seen the Law Society promote in their recent advertising campaigns, the need to obtain advice from qualified professionals.

Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx) are on their way to being able to authorise entities, and groups such as the Conveyancing Association are building training programmes for less qualified solicitors.

All this poses the question — who is the best professional to carry out these tasks effectively and more importantly, securely?

Recent changes in the probate market may help us consider how our market may change in future. Last month there were a range of changes within estate administration. On 23rd October, the House of Lords granted the go-ahead for members of CILEx and other experienced professionals, to carry out conveyancing and probate services, without needing supervision of a solicitor.

This new system has come into force this week and applications can be made to the ILEX Professional Standards (IPS) accompanied with supporting evidence, to show the applicant is at the appropriate level required.

Further updates in the wills and probate industry sees accountants being given the authority to offer probate services as well. As with CILEx, there is an array of pros and cons to this change, both for consumers and professionals. Varying pricing structures and prior knowledge of what is involved with the financial aspects of an estate could potentially see this move being a success for some.

That said, as a supporting addition to probate, accountants will also have the opportunity to draft a client’s will, which could be seen as questionable by others in the legal sector. Within the will writing arena unregulated will writers still write thousands of wills and Lasting Powers every year.

As a professional, do you feel these sectors are moving in the right direction, or should more be done to regulate these services? Can and should all lawyers and non-lawyers be deemed as equally competent within conveyancing and probate, or should there be a clear divide?

For more advice and news within the wills and probate industry, why not head over to our sister site, Today’s Wills & Probate and discover more from this sector.

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