SRA Shuts Down National Firm Kingly

Kingly, which operates 16 offices in the UK, has been abruptly closed by the regulator.

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has shut down Kingly Solicitors Limited, stating that the firm failed to comply with one or more of the terms of its licence.

An intervention means the SRA has closed a firm with immediate effect,” said an SRA spokesperson. “It will stop the firm from operating, take possession of all documents and papers held by the firm, and take possession of all money held by the firm (including clients’ money). It is not responsible towards employees or trade creditors of firms that it has intervened in.

The SRA has also launched an investigation into Kingly’s directors, Champika Ratnayake, Simon Hutcheson and Simon Crosby Peacock. In a statement, the body added that there “is reason to suspect dishonesty” on the part of Nurul Miah as a manager of Kingly Solicitors.

Miah, who is not a regulated lawyer, resigned as a director of the firm in May 2019.

Kingly (previously RH Legal, and which trades under several different names), is a 16-office law firm consolidator with 180 staff nationwide. Its headquarters is in London, but Legal Futures notes that it also holds offices in Beverley, Bristol, Harrogate, Leighton Buzzard, Market Weighton, Menai Bridge, Milton Keynes, Northallerton, Redcar, Ripon, Settle, Stockton on Tees, Watford and York.

The firm’s website states that it has been “acquiring proactive, agile and successful law firms across the UK” since 2016, with its most recent acquisition being London-based criminal law firm Hughmans in 2020.

It is unusual for the SRA to intervene in a firm of this size. Its most recent comparable intervention was the closure of 18-office firm Blavo & Co in 2015.

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