It is not typically that the world feels sorry for solicitors; programs like Ally McBeal have put images of eccentric and promiscuous layabout lawyers with more money than sense in the public’s eye, with feelings of envy and dislike not uncommon in the everyman’s perspective at the mention of the term solicitor. However, when 7000 London conveyancing solicitors were told by a leading high street building society that they were no longer allowed to handle the bank’s side of the conveyancing process for its customers’ house buying, a small amount of sympathy may be appropriate.
There have been protests by The Law Society who have deemed it a ‘grave’ decision and are in talks with the bank to attempt to rectify the situation; if they fail to do this, then not only will the solicitors be out of pocket for the work that they are used to getting but house buyers will have suffer the extra expenditure of an additional set of solicitors to look after the lender’s interest.
The decision to remove the esteemed ‘panel’ of conveyancing solicitors, most of which are based in or around London’s city centre, came totally out of the blue, shocking many of the lawyers and their firms. The reasons that the bank have offered for such a move is that the solicitors have not been putting in the effort over the past yr and certainly not putting in enough work to constitute their position with the bank.
As mentioned before, this will have repercussions for any potential house buyer who is looking to purchase a house with this leading high street building society, as they will now have to choose a conveyancing solicitor who s not on the bank’s ‘panel’, resulting in the bank insisting on another firm of lawyers becoming involved just to overview the paperwork, leading to extra costs for the borrower. The approximate additional cost for such a process will be between