Law Soc goes back to the drawing board on leaflets

ONE HUNDRED thousand Law Society public advice leaflets on how to instruct solicitors, which caused a storm of protest over their constant reference to costs, are to be pulped and rewritten at a cost of thousands of pounds.

Controversy surrounding the leaflets, 'Working with your solicitor', flared up shortly before the Law Society's elections when the then vice-president, Robert Sayer, lambasted them for steering clients towards the cheapest solicitor.

Their intended distribution to advice centres across the country was put on hold but now the Law Society has decided to rewrite them.

“They are being redrafted to take into account concerns about some of the messages in the leaflet which were unlikely to help clients,” said a spokesman.

Tony Girling, the new Law Society president, said Robert Sayer would be consulted over the redrafting.

The cost of designing and printing the original leaflets was around £17,000. The society has been unable to give a precise figure of how much the reprint will cost.

Girling said the waste was “unfortunate” and acknowledged there was a lack of consultation within the Law Society over the original leaflet.

“The wording in the leaflet in terms of costs was overplayed,” he said. “It was felt that it was inappropriate for the leaflet to advise that people should try and find the cheapest solicitor since that runs counter to the sort of advice we are issuing to the public over conveyancing.”

Sayer commented: “I am keen to co-operate over this. But I believe the leaflet requires a fundamental rewrite and I'd be surprised if it is being changed enough to secure my support.”