SCB under review

THE FUTURE of the embattled Solicitors Complaints Bureau (SCB) is in the balance as a review is launched to stem the tide of criticism.

Key recommendations on the future direction of the bureau will be put before the adjudication and appeals committee within the next couple of months. The proposals will then be passed on to the Law Society Council which will decide whether to revamp complaints-handling.

The bureau's policy and advisory committee, chaired by Tony Heywood, has been asked to carry out the review which follows criticism from the profession and the public.

Among the disgruntled practitioners is Nicholas Oglethorpe, of Norwich-based Clapham & Collinge, who believes the SCB has “gone off track”. He describes the current system as “a mess” and in need of radical reform.

Oglethorpe, a former society adjudication and appeals committee member, plans to stage a seminar for solicitors to debate proposed reforms.

Chris Heaps, adjudication and appeals committee chair, says suggestions from the profession would be welcomed. The seminar should be staged as part of the consultation process on proposed reforms, he says.