You solicitors should be more like us brokers, Julian

From Bill IJmstrong

How unexpected to get an instant response from a solicitor named Julian in leafy Guildford. The week is off to a cracking start.

Trouble is, I now have an urgent need to set up an embassy in Guildford representing the real world. My reasons for this are many and all inspired by Julian’s barbed reply.

The main reason solicitors visit unwarranted and unnecessary indemnity policies upon purchasers on the day of contract exchange is because they have only opened the file that day and are being harassed by agents, buyers and vendors to get things moving. Should a point arise that they cannot immediately cover with a little emailing and telephoning they resort to the lifeboat of last resort, namely the indemnity policy.

The Real World Embassy could advise Julian that in over 30 years in this business, I for one have continually seen lawyers’ conveyancing departments staffed by office juniors doing mundane tasks centred around paper shuffling. I often make a point of asking if they are qualified solicitors. In only about 10% of cases might there be one paralegal or licenced conveyencer in the department. Clients pay solicitors’ fees for office clerks’ output.

Like many, I was until recently unaware that title insurance fell under the remit – and hence the spotlight – of the Financial Services Authority.