6 October 2011 – a new era
Well, after months of waiting expectantly for the advent of a new era in the operation of the legal services market 6 October 2011 has arrived and is something of a damp squib.
We still need to be ready for the opening up of the marketplace on 6 October but the SRA will not be able to offer ABS licences on that day. In fact, we do not yet know when they will be in a position to do so!
Parliamentary papers have to be presented to permit the SRA to regulate ABS. However, it has not been possible to achieve agreement with the Legal Services Board over the terms of the SRA’s authority to act as a regulator by the date necessary for the partliamentary procedures to have been concluded in time for the SRA to issue licences from 6 October 2011.
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This is not just an embarrassment but also something of a commercial problem as no doubt some significant firms and organisations had geared themselves up to be ready to go from 6 October 2011.
The worst problem I think is now the uncertainty as to when the SRA will be able to start issuing licences. Watch this space. Meanwhile if you wish you could apply to the Council for Licensed Conveyancers who have agreed terms with the LSB and who will be ready to go on 6 October 2011.
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