The Council for Licensed Conveyancers (CLC) has applied to the Legal Services Board (LSB) to improve their rules and regulations in the hope that it will create transparent information offered to legal services users and ultimately enhance their consumer choice.
The proposed changes move beyond fee transparency introduced by the SRA and will encourage CLC members to provide standard information on: the services they provide; explain the main stages in the delivery of the service and make the legal service user aware of the expected timescales.
The transparency the CLC are proposing also includes clear cost and pricing information available on their websites and other formats.
However, it is the clarity on the services CLC-licensed firms offer that the CLC believe their users will find most beneficial. It is hoped that the changes will empower the users to confidently find the firm that will best suit their unique needs.
Sheila Kumar, chief executive of the CLC has said: “Under our existing Rules, the firms we license already have to provide clear cost information to clients. These changes mean that consumers will have access to information before they decide who to use, so giving them additional and clearer information upon which to base their decision.
“Providing clear information to customers makes good business sense. CLC-licensed firms should see the changes as providing them with new opportunities to create a competitive advantage as they focus on service and quality.
“The rules set out what firms have to do, but all CLC licensed firms are different, so they will be free to comply with the rules in the way that best suits their business and their clients.
“These rule changes implement recommendations from the Competition and Markets Authority and all legal sector regulators are introducing a similar approach to ensure consistency across all regulated sectors.”
It is at each firm’s discretion as to how they will comply with the changes, however the CLC will publish guidelines on best practice.
Are you worried that these new changes will lead to a focus on price as opposed to services? Or, is this an opportunity to consider the quality, bespoke services available to consumers?