Law Society of England and Wales

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The Law Society
Law Society of England and Wales.svg
Formation 2 June 1825; 193 years ago (1825-06-02)
Type Professional organisation
Headquarters Chancery Lane
London, WC2
Region served
England and Wales
President
Christina Blacklaws
Website www.lawsociety.org.uk

The Law Society of England and Wales (officially The Law Society) is the professional association that represents and governs solicitors for the jurisdiction of England and Wales. It provides services and support to practising and training solicitors, as well as serving as a sounding board for law reform. Members of the Society are often consulted when important issues are being debated in Parliament or by the executive. The Society was formed in 1825.

The Hall of The Law Society is in Chancery Lane, London, but it also has offices in Cardiff to deal with the Wales jurisdiction and Assembly, and Brussels, to deal with European Union law.

A president is elected annually to serve for one year. The current president is Joe Egan.[1]

Barristers in England and Wales have a similar professional body, the General Council of the Bar, commonly known as the Bar Council.

History

The coat of arms of the Law Society.
Headquarters of the Law Society on Chancery Lane, London

The London Law Institution, the predecessor to the Law Society, was founded in 1823 when many London Solicitors came together to raise the reputation of the profession by setting standards and ensuring good practice. 'London' was dropped from the title in 1825 to reflect the fact that the Law Institution had national aspirations.

The Society was founded on 2 June 1825, when a committee of management was appointed. The Society acquired its first Royal Charter in 1831 as The Society of Attorneys, Solicitors, Proctors and others not being Barristers, practising in the Courts of Law and Equity of the United Kingdom.[2] A new Charter in 1845 defined the Society as an independent, private body servicing the affairs of the profession like other professional, literary and scientific bodies. By further Royal Charter in 1903 the name of the Society was changed to simply "The Law Society". The Society first admitted women members in 1922.[3]

In July 2013, the Association of Women Solicitors (AWS), a national organisation working with and representing women solicitors in the United Kingdom, merged with the Law Society to form its Women Lawyers Division. Although merged, the AWS will operate separately from the Law Society.[4]

Discipline

In 1834, the Society first initiated proceedings against dishonest practitioners. By 1907, the Society possessed a statutory disciplinary committee, and was empowered to investigate solicitors' accounts and to issue annual practising certificates. In 1983, the Society established the Office for the Supervision of Solicitors to deal with complaints about solicitors. Complaints regarding the conduct of solicitors are now dealt with by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). However complaints regarding poor service are the remit of the Legal Ombudsman.[5]

Legal education

The Solicitors Act 1860 enabled the Society to create a three-tier examination system.[3] In 1903, the Society established its own Law Society School of Law, which later merged with tutorial firm Gibson and Weldon to become the independent College of Law. By 1922 The Law Society required a compulsory academic year for all clerks.

Regulatory body status

Following the recommendations of the Clementi Review The Law Society split its representative and regulatory functions.

Complaints from the public are handled by the Legal Ombudsman which is a single portal for complaints by the public made against all providers of legal services including the Bar, licensed conveyancers etc., but excluding unqualified will-writers.

The regulatory body for solicitors is the Solicitors Regulation Authority. It is a Board of The Law Society although it regulates and enforces regulation completely independently of the Law Society. The Law Society remains the approved regulator, although following the Legal Services Act 2007 a new body, the Legal Services Board (chaired by Sir Michael Pitt, a government appointee) oversees all the approved regulators including the Bar Council, which has also divested its regulatory functions into the Bar Standards Board.

Past presidents

See also

References

  1. ^ Law Society Press Release
  2. ^ Law Society Royal Charters Archived 21 November 2008 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ a b Law Society Website History Section Archived 27 December 2010 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ "Law Society Women Lawyers Division appoints inaugural council". lawsociety.org.uk. 17 July 2013. Retrieved November 29, 2015. 
  5. ^ http://www.sra.org.uk/consumers/problems/report-solicitor.page#legal-ombudsman
  6. ^ "Chief executive and office holders". Law Society. Retrieved 5 July 2018. 
  7. ^ "President-Joe sets out his priorities for the year". Law Society. Retrieved 30 June 2018. 
  8. ^ "Chief Executive and Office Holders". The Law Society. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  9. ^ "Law Society welcomes 'virtual lawyer' Lucy Scott-Moncrieff as new president". The Law Society. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  10. ^ "City of London Law Society Lifetime Achievement Award: John Wotton". Legalweek.com. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  11. ^ "RadcliffesLe Brasseur". Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  12. ^ "Presidents making history in Birmingham". Birmingham City Council. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  13. ^ "Law Society of England and Wales President to visit University". University of Wolverhampton. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  14. ^ "Andrew Holroyd, OBE". Liverpool John Moores University. Archived from the original on 3 September 2014. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  15. ^ "Fiona Woolf". Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  16. ^ "The Modern President". Archived from the original on 5 September 2008. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  17. ^ "Law Society Biographies" (PDF). Law Society. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  18. ^ "Law Society chief 'was left shaking after outburst'". The Telegraph. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  19. ^ "Law Society aims to have MDPs operating by 2000". The Lawyer. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  20. ^ "No. 39104". The London Gazette (Supplement). 29 December 1950. p. 1. 
  21. ^ "No. 38929". The London Gazette (Supplement). 2 June 1950. p. 2776. 
  22. ^ "No. 38493". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 1948. p. 1. 
  23. ^ {{London Gazette |issue=37977 |date=6 June 1947 |pages=2572|supp=y}
  24. ^ "No. 37598". The London Gazette (Supplement). 4 June 1946. p. 2756. 
  25. ^ "No. 37119". The London Gazette (Supplement). 14 June 1945. p. 2934. 
  26. ^ "No. 36544". The London Gazette (Supplement). 2 June 1944. p. 2565. 
  27. ^ "No. 36033". The London Gazette (Supplement). 28 May 1943. p. 2418. 
  28. ^ "No. 35029". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 1940. p. 2. 
  29. ^ "No. 34633". The London Gazette (Supplement). 6 June 1939. p. 3852. 
  30. ^ "No. 34518". The London Gazette (Supplement). 7 June 1938. p. 3686. 
  31. ^ "No. 34396". The London Gazette (Supplement). 11 May 1937. p. 3076. 
  32. ^ "No. 33898". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 December 1932. p. 2. 
  33. ^ Alumni Cantabrigienses: A Biographical List of All Known Students ..., Volume 2. p. 404. 
  34. ^ "No. 33390". The London Gazette (Supplement). 4 June 1928. p. 3846. 
  35. ^ "No. 33119". The London Gazette (Supplement). 29 December 1925. p. 2. 
  36. ^ "No. 33007". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 December 1924. p. 2. 
  37. ^ "No. 32840". The London Gazette (Supplement). 29 June 1923. p. 4606. 
  38. ^ a b "Our history". Druces. Retrieved 5 July 2018. 
  39. ^ "Court Circular". The Times (36804). London. 26 June 1902. p. 9. 
  40. ^ "The Law Society". The Times (36752). London. 26 April 1902. p. 8. 
  41. ^ Venn, John. Alumni Cantabrigienses: A Biographical List of All Known Students ..., Volume 2. p. 435. 
  42. ^ The Law Journal, Volume 11. p. 432. 
  43. ^ a b The Solicitors' Journal and Reporter, Volume 19. p. 141. 
  44. ^ Template:Site book
  45. ^ Dietrichsen and Hannay's Royal Almanack and Nautical and Astronomical Ephemeris. p. 81. 
  46. ^ The British Almanac, Volume 35. p. 78. 
  47. ^ The Solicitors' Journal and Reporter, Volume 21. p. 823. 
  48. ^ The Legal Observer, Or, Journal of Jurisprudence, Volume 36. p. 270. 
  49. ^ Hume, Abraham. The Learned Societies and Printing Clubs of the United Kingdom. p. 91. 
  50. ^ a b Justice of the Peace Volume 10. p. 530. 
  51. ^ Oldfield, Paul. Victoria Crosses on the Western Front August 1914- April 1915:. p. 199. 
  52. ^ The Royal Kalendar and Court and City Register for England, Scotland. p. 341. 

External links

  • Official website
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