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Law Society focuses on customer service

It was encouraging to hear Des Hudson, CEO of the Law Society, speak with passion and pride at our Conveyancing Association (CA) meeting recently. In Mr Hudson we seem to have a leader who is prepared to be vocal and challenge government proposals which may open up the legal services market but at the same time have an impact on the quality of customer service.

The CEO put his weight firmly behind the Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme (Napthens became an early member of this scheme over a year ago) as the benchmark of quality for solicitors carrying out residential property work. He acknowledged the importance of the CA’s recent Pledges and how they will support and promote quality in customer service as well as legal advice.

It is interesting that the Law Society is now looking closely at a Wills Quality Scheme akin to the conveyancing scheme. There is a move towards making will writing a regulated activity which would need to be licensed by the Legal Services Board, again just as conveyancing and many other areas of law. It is believed that 15% of all wills are currently written by non-solicitor will writers, without any formal regulation or requirement to be professionally insured. There is a strongly held belief that the regulation of will writing will see an improvement in quality and a reduction in family disputes that can often arise after the death of a loved one. Unfortunately, there appears to be no move as yet, to regulate estate administration or powers of attorney work, which seems odd given how closely linked these areas are with will writing.

On a final note, Mr Hudson explained how hard the Law Society is working to improve the delivery of customer service by solicitors, and the overall client experience. This is an area of huge importance to Napthens and it is great to hear that we are now getting the support of our professional body. Technical legal training requirements will remain in place, but they will soon be supported by customer service training and guidance.