CA Chairman Eddie Goldsmith welcomes delegates to the inaugural Conveyancing Association Conference
Our inaugural Conveyancing Conference, organised in partnership with Modern Law, rounded off the CA’s most successful year to date.
Following a keynote speech from Law Society President Jonathan Smithers, attendees were treated to a packed agenda, featuring panel discussions with industry leaders on the key issues affecting the industry. Some of the highlights of the day included
Regulation: Delegates expressed concern as to some aspects of SRA regulation whilst those that were CLC regulated were positive about being regulated by a specialist property regulator. The CLC confirmed that they were working with the SRA and indemnity insurers in seeking an alternative proposal to run off insurance for solicitors wishing to change regulator.
The Regulator Panel, featuring Sheila Kumar, Chief Executive – CLC, Crispin Passmore – Executive Director, SRA, Andrew Hopper QC and Priya-Anand Patel – Head of Compliance & Risk Management, Legal Eye.
Insurance: The Insurer Panel provided some hot tips on how to best manage your practice, to ensure that insurance premiums do not increase, and were keen to work with the industry in relation to insurance packages to cover cyber fraud within legal practices.
The Insurers panel, feauturing Steve Ray – Director, Howden Windsor, Martin Ellis – UK Professional Indemnity Practice Leader, Willis, Mark Carver – Partner, Miller Insurance Services LLP, Lucy Tolond – Partner, BLM Law.
Lenders: The Lender Panel confirmed that lenders were realistic in relation to expectations they placed on their Legal Panel with many of the new lenders not looking at large panels to manage but rather at restricted or controlled panels. Joint representation for client and mortgage lenders was considered to be best practice, especially following the failure of the HSBC single representation initiative.
Innovation: The New Initiatives Panel discussed a number of topics, including the opportunities afforded by the relaxation of the Separate Business Rules and the introduction of the option to outsource the distribution of client account payments. Many of the audience were sceptical as to how this would work in practice but this is against an appetite on behalf of the regulators to explore this as an opportunity to reduce misappropriation of clients funds by dishonest conveyancers.
Cyber-crime: The Cyber Fraud Panel highlighted the very real risks to the conveyancing industry. The Conveyancing Association will be releasing guidance and hopefully a cyber fraud insurance policy for members as a part of a new Conveyancing Association Cyber Fraud Protocol in 2016.
The feedback we have received from the conference has been very positive, with attendees welcoming the practical advice and insights that came out of the panel discussions.
Our annual dinner, which was kindly sponsored by TM Group, rounded off the day, at which we saw the best attendance ever with 120 guests. It provided a fantastic opportunity to renew acquaintances and make new ones – thank you again to all those who attended and we look forward to seeing you all next year!
The dinner also saw the Matterhorn Challenge reach its successful conclusion, achieving the fundraising target of £50,000.00 for the Ty Hafan Children’s Hospice in just 5 months. Conveyancer, Geraint Aubrey, was at the Dinner to thank everyone for their fantastic support on behalf of the Children’s Hospice. Over £3,500 was raised at the dinner, thanks to donations from delegates, Modern Law and Lawyer Checker. Our thanks again to all those who donated so generously to help us in making this possible.
We are already putting together plans for next year’s edition of the Conveyancing Association Conference, which will take place on December 1st 2016 at Chelsea FC, Stamford Bridge, London.