23 Apr, 2012

The Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) has welcomed proposals announced today by the Legal Services Board (LSB) which would bring both will-writing and estate administration within the list of “reserved legal activities‟ and at the same time deliver significant changes aimed at ensuring that regulation in legal services does not operate as a barrier to effective competition.


 STEP has long advocated reform in this area and is particularly pleased that estate administration has also been recommended for regulation. This was an opportunity missed by the Scottish Government when they regulated will-writing only in 2010.


STEP has written several publications regarding legal services regulation including the 2011 report  “Cowboy Will-Writing: Incompetence and dishonesty in the UK wills market” and the 2011 STEP statement “Building Consumer Confidence in Will-Writing” which address problems in the will-writing market and sets out what needs to be done to restore consumer confidence. 


STEP Chief Executive David Harvey (pictured) said: “The LSB’s findings have mirrored those of our own research which indicates how widespread cowboy will-writers have become. It is clear this is an area which must now be regulated. We also share the LSB’s belief that the regulation of those already providing regulated advice must be reformed, and we will continue to work constructively with the LSB and others as these proposals are developed further.”


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