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Court closures deepen inequalities in the justice system | Recognition of right to confidential legal advice welcomed | New Law Society advice on protection against scams

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11 February 2016

Court closures will deepen inequalities in the justice system

The Law Society is disappointed that the government is pressing ahead with the closure of 86 courts in England and Wales, which will make it more difficult for a significant number of people to get to court. We acknowledge that the government intends to make changes to its proposals for 22 courts following evidence submitted by our members.
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Law Society welcomes recognition of right to confidential legal advice

We welcome today's report from the Joint Committee on the draft Investigatory Powers Bill, which calls for protection for legal professional privilege (LPP) to be included on the face of the Bill and not solely in a code of practice. We also welcome the committee's recommendation that the Home Office reviews its proposals in the light of the European Convention on Human Rights and relevant case law.
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New Law Society advice on protection against scams

We have launched a new webpage to help firms protect themselves against being scammed and provide them with help and support if they have fallen victim to fraudsters. The advice focuses on how to help firms avoid diversion of client monies into the accounts of criminals and the resulting regulatory and financial consequences.
Find out more


Man talking on phone

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Financial Benchmarking Survey shows majority of law firms weathered a challenging 12 months

The income of firms polled in the 2016 Law Management Section Financial Benchmarking Survey has increased for a sixth consecutive year, with a median rise last year of 5.4 per cent, despite a challenging year.
Find out more
Join the Law Management Section members

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Law Society president gives evidence to Justice Committee on court fees

Law Society president Jonathan Smithers gave evidence to the Commons Justice Committee on court and tribunals fees and charges on Tuesday 9 February.

Find out more and watch the session
Read the Gazette article on the session


Jonathan Smithers giving evidence to Justice Committee

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Property updates

Help to Buy ISAs: first bonus applications

Since 1 February, conveyancing solicitors have been able to make a bonus application under the Help to Buy ISA scheme on behalf of their clients.
Find out more

London Help to Buy launched on 1 February

The government scheme to give a 40 per cent equity loan, interest free for the first five years, came into force on 1 February for buyers of properties in London with a purchase price of up to £600,000.
Find out more

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Blog: 10 ways to get clients to love your firm

Kerrie Fuller, member communications manager at the Law Society, explains how excellent customer service is the key to growing your business.

Read the blog


Man holding heart

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Facilitators for the Advocacy and the Vulnerable Training programme needed

Following a number of high-profile cases where advocates were criticised for the techniques used to question vulnerable witnesses, Judge Rook established a cross-professional working group to develop training. The professional bodies have undertaken to deliver this training to their members by 2018, and we are now recruiting for both lead facilitators and facilitators for the training programme.
Find out more

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Reminder: Law Society advocacy survey closes on 22 February

We are keen to understand whether we could be doing more to assist members with regard to advocacy training. We would be grateful if you could help us by completing this short survey - it should take no more than a couple of minutes.
Fill out the survey

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Correction regarding last week's story on unrated professional indemnity insurers

Last week's Professional Update headline on unrated professional indemnity insurers erroneously referred to Enterprise. The news item concerns developments in relation to Balva, ERIC and Elite. We have accordingly corrected the mistake on our website and would like to apologise for the error.
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The Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal

This book provides a unique step-by-step guide to the law and practice of the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal (SDT), from the issue of proceedings through to appeal. It is the only comprehensive book available on SDT proceedings and contains all the leading cases on tribunal proceedings, many of which are not available online.

Order today


The Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal

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Training and events

Judicial appointments: Interview training for solicitors - 5.5 CPD hours

In view of increasing competition for judicial appointments, this course will equip solicitor applicants with the skills to enhance application and interview performance.
Book now - various dates in Bristol, Manchester and London

Law Management Section annual conference 2016 - 5.5 CPD hours

This conference offers delegates the opportunity to discuss common challenges, share experiences and hear practical tips from both their peers and expert speakers. The programme will focus on the impact of technology in law firms, business development, finance, and staff attraction and retention. In addition, an inspiring and engaging keynote will set the scene for the day.
Book now - 27 April
Reduced rates for Law Management Section members
Join the conversation on Twitter: #LMSconf2016


Competition Section annual conference 2016 - 6.5 CPD hours

This conference offers a mix of engaging panel sessions and more detailed presentations across a wide variety of topics, including state aid, merger control, e-commerce and digital markets, anti-trust enforcement and commitments, and competition litigation.
Book now - 19 May
Reduced rates for Competition Section members




Grow your small firm with LinkedIn - 1 CPD hour

Discover how you can use LinkedIn to grow your business and strengthen your current relationships with clients. The session will show you how to use LinkedIn to find new clients who are best suited to your practice, improve current client relationships, increase repeat business and referrals, raise your profile within target markets and enhance your existing marketing and business development activities.
Book now - 3 March
Law Management Section members receive a 20 per cent discount

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Making the most of your membership


Experian offers members specially-negotiated rates on anti-money laundering e-verifications, identity and KYC checking.
Find out more

First Title

First Title Insurance plc is the preferred provider of legal indemnity insurance for the Law Society.
Find out more

View all membership benefits

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The Law Society, 113 Chancery Lane, London, WC2A 1PL. Tel: 020 7242 1222


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