From the Chairperson: Goals & Vision 2016 / 2017
The Sole Practitioner’s Group (“SPG”) is an established representative body encompassing sole practitioners throughout England and Wales.
Membership is free and the central theme of the organisation is to effect change through representation and by lobbying organisations that govern and affect our members’ practices.
As chair of the SPG, my main intention for the coming year is to maximise the level of engagement with both you as our members and with the stakeholders. The stakeholders being; the Solicitors Regulation Authority, the Law Society, the Legal Ombudsman, and those legislative bodies that have an effect upon members’ practices on a day-to-day basis.
The SPG over recent years has worked very hard in modernising its approach. As a part of this it has conducted research through Affinity PR and is currently implementing some of the recommendations that you, as our valued members have voiced.
On the 9th May 2015 our new website was launched which has even more tips and guidance to help you as members. Please see the “Savvy Tips and Guidance“ section of the SPG website.
The SPG has been seeking to actively represent your views in response to consultation papers produced by the stakeholders of our profession who seek to implement change. We have created a Lobbying Group who vigorously seek to understand and address real concerns that affect your business on a day to day basis. For example, the issues faced by sole practitioners with regards to conveyancing and lenders panels. The Lobbying Group intends to reduce the restrictions that are placed, by the various lenders’ panels, upon sole practitioners’ ability to act for clients.
These restrictions often mean that sole practitioners are not able to act for certain clients as they are not on the lender’s panel. However, some of the lenders’ panels are not agreeable to allowing sole practitioners’ firms to be registered with them. This has resulted in a significant loss of conveyancing work that could easily be performed by sole practitioners’ right across England and Wales. The SPG believes this is unfair and that this problem should be addressed immediately.
Furthermore, the intention behind the Lobbying Group is to create a closer relationship with the stakeholders, whose decisions have a direct and significant impact upon you. The strengthening of such relationships will take time. However, it is something towards which I shall passionately strive. I’m confident that this will yield many tangible results during my time as the chairman of SPG.
In order to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of the SPG, it has been divided into a number of groups headed by members of the Executive Committee whose expertise and experience make them the most suitable individuals to lead these groups. This will enable the SPG to draw upon the wealth of skills possessed by its executive committee in order to further the aims and objectives of the SPG, for your benefit.
Some of the initiatives which I wish to implement during my time as chair are as follows: topical regional seminars, strong networking events, seeking to help new start-up firms and offering both training and support to our members’ firms. I have no doubt that this will positively develop the SPG and more importantly, your firm.
I appreciate that engagement by you with the SPG will only be successful if you believe, as a member, that you are receiving tangible benefits. In light of this, I seek to provide as much value to you as a member as may be achieved during my tenure. As you will be aware, membership to the SPG is free, which I am confident is a great first step in providing value and I wish to ensure that this is coupled with the furnishing of excellent beneficial services to all of you.
The core of my message, which I have sought to convey in this short piece, is that I intend to LISTEN to you as a member, and then to ACT on your behalf to ensure that the SPG provides the support and services that you specifically seek from it. My “door is always open” and I therefore invite you, as a member, to contact me so that we may discuss what the SPG could do for you, going forward. I hope to be hearing from you shortly.
Sincerely looking forward to serving you and the SPG in my time as chair,
Please ring me on: 01634 780 230 or email me at: email@example.com