Martin Partington: Spotlight on the Justice System

Keeping the English Legal System under review

Provision of legal services – expanding the roles of Legal Executives

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Two decisions from the Legal Services Board (LSB), announced in December 2013, will – if approved by Government – have the effect of enabling legal executives to compete more fully in the legal services market.

The first decision approved at application from ILEX Professional Standards’ (IPS) applications to enable it to authorise members of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx) to practise independently in Probate and Conveyancing. This is likely to pave the way for CILEx members to practise independently in all areas of law. The decision goes to the Lord Chancellor, Chris Grayling, and for subsequent parliamentary approval, anticipated during the course of 2014.

See: http://www.cilex.org.uk/media/media_releases/lsb_approves_practice_rights.aspx

The second decision enables CILEX to regulate Chartered Legal Executives exercising litigation and related rights of audience independently, as well as new rules for regulating immigration advisers.

The ability for individual Chartered Legal Executives already working in a regulated entity to conduct litigation, exercise rights of audience and provide immigration services without supervision requires no further government approval. Thus IPS expects to begin accepting applications from CILEx Fellows in the Summer of 2014. This will benefit thousands of law firms who currently have unnecessary bureaucracies in place to sign-off on the work of experienced Chartered Legal Executives, including those working as fee-earners and partners.

IPS will be able to start authorising independent legal practices offering litigation and immigration services when Parliament has granted powers to set up a compensation fund and to intervene in practices. The LSB has confirmed it will approve IPS’s rules for establishing a compensation fund once Parliament has awarded the relevant powers. This is likely to be taken forward in 2015.

See http://www.cilex.org.uk/media/media_releases/lsb_approves_full_rights.aspx

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Written by lwtmp

January 1, 2014 at 11:19 am

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