Your Really Simple Guide to Completing your SRA Diversity Reporting

In July last year the SRA added yet another requirement to your Pile of Compliance - workforce diversity data monitoring. But with two thirds of firms yet to return their questionnaire , it may well be that it's slipped off your to-do list. Trouble is, TODAY IS THE DEADLINE, and you could face regulatory action for non-compliance - so we thought we'd heroically jump in and help. This advice is ... Read more

Old year resolutions

Another tough year is drawing to a close and you’re looking forward to spending a few festive days with your dysfunctional family in an overheated, overcrowded house, eating overcooked food washed down with over-priced booze as your overexcited kids break the toys on which you massively overspent. Amidst all this festive joy, your thoughts might turn to 2014. Before making New Year resolutions ... Read more

Find Out How Compliant You Really Are

Unless you came into independent practice with a passionate desire to spend your days trawling the 500 pages of the SRA handbook, chances are you’re looking to stay compliant with minimum fuss. Luckily, our practice compliance experts have done the hard work for you, and have developed this incredibly useful free tool, the Practice Compliance HealthCheck. Take 10 - 15 minutes to answer some ... Read more

A compliance carol for the independent lawyer

On the twelve days of Christmas, my colleagues gave to me... So you’re coming to the end of another year as an all-singing, all-dancing independent lawyer and things haven’t gone too badly so far, but don’t count your chickens (or geese) yet. Danger lies ahead - the Christmas season looms. As a lawyer with multiple hats, it’s time to make sure you’re earning your compliance officer stripes; let’s ... Read more

10 Ways To Make Sure Your Bill Gets Paid

You've finally completed the world’s most tortuous transaction and, with a huge sigh of relief, you submit your final bill. Your client, who called you twice a day every day, has a sudden attack of shyness, ignoring your bill and your chasing letters. Before you reach in anger for that Claim Form, run your eye over this list and make sure you've ticked all your check boxes. If you've done all of ... Read more

The 4 Dos and 4 Don’ts of Referral and Fee Sharing

Or, How to Comply With Chapter 9. It’s common for lawyers, especially independents and sole practitioners, to refer work to one another. In fact, it’s one of the most effective ways to build your client base. But the SRA has an eye on the practice. More than one eye, actually. They've devoted a whole chapter to it in the handbook - chapter 9. If you want to make sure you don’t come a cropper, ... Read more

How To Breach Client Confidentiality in One Easy Step

It really is that easy. Tell someone anything about (or even the name of) one of your clients and you are immediately breaching the Solicitors Code of Conduct and the matter must be referred to your firm’s COLP. If the breach is a material breach, your firm will then be under an obligation to report it to the SRA and if the SRA agrees that there has been a breach, you can quickly find yourself ... Read more

Top Ten Tips for Lawyers Going Solo

Thinking about setting up on your own is really exciting and full of possibilities. But it can also be a little daunting. We've been talking to Karen Purdy, committee member and former chairman of the Sole Practitioners Group - and a sole practitioner herself - about the key considerations a lawyer thinking about going solo needs to take into account. She's put together a definitive list ... Read more

Survive or Thrive on the 4th of July – the Highlights

Earlier this month we hosted our Survive or Thrive event. Designed to give independent lawyers the opportunity to network with their peers and gain a deeper insight and practical guidance on the SRA's compliance requirements. The event was a huge success. Have a look at the videos below to get an idea of the tone of the event. This first video gives a general overview of the event. Perhaps ... Read more

20 Financial Management Mistakes The SRA Won’t Forgive

The SRA exceeded its entire 2013 budget for interventions within the first three months. According to the SRA, a significant number of firms are facing financial difficulty across the sector. Are we really surprised? It’s a huge challenge for firms to keep their head above water in the most challenging market conditions the legal sector has faced for many decades: an entrenched recession combined ... Read more