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LSB should focus on ‘more pressing’ areas than conveyancing

By Monidipa Fouzder >>

The Legal Services Board should widen its focus on improving customer information – moving away from conveyancing to more pressing areas of practice, a specialist regulator for conveyancers has said.

Responding to a consultation on the oversight regulator’s draft 2023/24 business plan, the Council for Licensed Conveyancers said there is already significantly more information available on conveyancing than other areas. 

The LSB’s ‘consumer empowerment’ agenda began with a strong focus on conveyancing and probate services, the CLC said.

‘This was a very sensible place to start because of the volume of both those services and their highly commoditised nature which perhaps lends itself more easily to a data-driven approach to aiding consumer choice of provider. The sector has learned a great deal from that work so far and the Quality Indicators Pilot Report will soon add to the very useful and important insight that we always have.

‘Having made very significant progress in these two areas, there are now lessons that can be applied to other legal services where the need for better consumer information may now be more pressing even if more difficult to achieve because of the nature and delivery model of those services. Indeed, it may be those very features that mean that the need for better consumer information more urgent.’

The conveyancing sector was reaching a point where it had a shared vision of a transformed conveyancing process, the CLC added.

‘Delivering that faster, more secure process that gives everyone involved greater confidence and certainty will require a great deal of effort across the sector. For this reason, we would welcome an indication of how the LSB views the prioritisation of work on further consumer information developments. Transformation of the conveyancing process in the coming years is likely to be more beneficial to the consumer than incremental gains in consumer information.’

The LSB’s proposed business plan for 2023/24 comprises continuation of ongoing workstreams, such as establishing how regulation can best support the rule of law and high standards of professional ethics, and four new workstreams: market surveillance and horizon scanning; consumer vulnerability; enforcement policy review; and an evaluation of its internal governance rules.

(Courtesy: The Law Society Gazette)