I’m writing this on the longest day of the year – the Summer Solstice –…
The Conveyancing Association (CA), the leading trade body for the conveyancing industry, has today (18th January 2016) launched the second edition of its Conveyancing Protocol.
The Protocol was initially launched in 2013 and is the result of Association members, and a number of panel management companies, working together to produce a document that outlines best practice, and delivers a robust and efficient conveyancing service through co-operation.
The Protocol collates guidance from the Law Society, Legal Ombudsman, Council of Mortgage Lenders and case law to provide conveyancers with a single point of reference for this best practice.
Following a consultative work programme, a number of additions and amendments have been made resulting in the publication of a revised edition of the Protocol. This new version is (as its predecessor was) intended to:
- Firstly, deliver a robust and efficient conveyancing service through the cooperation of all parties within the transaction.
- Secondly, complement both the Conveyancing Association’s Pledges and the Conveyancing Quality Scheme (CQS). The Association does not intend that the Protocol conflict with any regulatory or Law Society guidance but simply highlight their best bits
The Protocol provides Best Practice Guidance for all member firms which cover off potential issues in the conveyancing process such as: delays in the transaction (from initial communication through to avoiding delays on completion); additional enquires (from avoiding unnecessary ones to preventing last-minute ones); post-completion (covering off Land Registry requisitions); and technical issues (dealing with extensions and alterations through to restrictive covenants and short leases).
The Conveyancing Association fully endorses the principles that underpin this second edition of the Protocol but recognises each transaction must be judged on its own merits. In some cases established working practices, system limitations and the instructions of a client or lender may prevent the adoption of the Protocol in full. Within these acknowledged limitations the CA commends the adoption of the protocol to its members as an opportunity to improve client satisfaction, shorten transaction times and to provide a valuable training tool for their conveyancing teams.
Eddie Goldsmith, Chairman of the Conveyancing Association, commented:
“One of the raison d’êtres of The Conveyancing Association is to improve the conveyancing process and to try, where possible, to cut out unnecessary delays, enquiries and any other issues which can hold up the process. In designing this new edition of the Protocol we’ve liaised and deliberated with many stakeholders, updating and amending best practice guidelines and covering off any new points raised since the launch of the first edition back in 2013.
“While it is not compulsory, Conveyancing Association members continue to give the Protocol their full backing and we will carry on looking at all ways and means to ensure we have a smoother conveyancing process which will benefit everyone, not least, the customer. Our aim here is for everyone to take a common sense approach to the conveyancing process; it’s about better communication, higher service levels and taking practical measures to reduce transaction times and facilitate better relationships within the conveyancing community to the benefit of all.
“The full Protocol can be viewed and downloaded from our website and we, as an Association, would welcome membership enquiries from all those firms who are not currently members but are looking to develop and support the conveyancing sector by playing a full part in the work we carry out.”