The Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal recently found local Portsmouth Solicitor, Michael Harris, guilty of a number of serious findings, such as providing misleading costs information to clients for Conveyancing in Portsmouth matters and failing to inform clients about fees that were paid to individuals who referred work to his firm.
As a result, Harris has been suspended from practice for a period of 2 years and it has been recommended that should the respondent return to practice at the end of the period of suspension, it should only be in an employed environment.
Harris, of Harris and Co, plans to appeal the decision, having already lost an appeal against a decision of the SDT previously, stating that:
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“There’s been no accusation of dishonesty against me, no client has lost money. The whole thing is absolutely disproportionate in the extreme which is why we are appealing. ”
The tribunal also found that Mr. Harris had failed to keep his accounts properly written up, contrary to rule 32 of the Solicitors accounts rules 1998 and had withdrawn monies from client accounts other than as permitted by rule 22 of the 1998 rules so resulting in shortages. He had failed to remedy breaches of the 1998 rules promptly upon discovery, contrary to rule 7 and had used client’s funds for his own purposes.
Amongst the allegations was an instance when Harris had drafted two wills under which he stood to derive a substantial benefit without advising either testatrix to seek independent legal advice.
Recognised Conveyancing in Portsmouth
The news comes after the introduction of the Law Society’s recently launched Conveyancing Quality Scheme (CQS) which provides a recognised quality standard for residential Conveyancing practices. The scheme was designed to create a trusted community for clients seeking services like Conveyancing in Portsmouth and deterring fraud.
It is intended to be a bench mark for the Conveyancing market and is only available to members of the Law Society and members also need to meet the extremely high standards set out.
With more and more firms offering services, such as Conveyancing in Portsmouth, it is important for clients to be sure that they are in good hands, as the costs associated with buying or selling a property can be quite substantial.
For more information about Conveyancing in Portsmouth from Fridaysmove, contact us on 0330 660 0286.