President pulls plug on group

THE PRESIDENTIAL working party dedicated to stemming the flow of trainee solicitors has been disbanded due to “internal divisions”.

Martin Mears, the president of the Law Society, has written to group members saying it could do no further useful work.

“It is clear from the communications I have received from some members of the working party that there is considerable diversity of opinion among us, not only concerning ways and means but also our objectives,” he says in his letter.

Limiting the tide of new recruits to the profession had been one of Mears' key election promises, but counsel's opinion commissioned by the group argued the Law Society had no power to limit numbers.

In his letter, Mears says a new working party to look into the possibility of imposing “an additional layer of tests” on vocational course applicants would be set up if he was elected for a second term.