Review of regulation of legal services: Dean’s statement
The Dean of Faculty, Gordon Jackson, QC, has responded to an announcement by the Scottish Government of an Independent Review of the Regulation of Legal Services.
Mr Jackson said: “I welcome that this review is taking place. It is very important that the legal profession retains the confidence of the public. I know that the Faculty of Advocates has earned that confidence, and that this thorough review will demonstrate that an independent referral bar has been, and will continue to be vital in maintaining an effective and fair justice system.
“The Faculty will willingly co-operate fully with the inquiry and I am confident that the considerable experience of the Faculty’s representatives, Laura Dunlop, QC, and Derek Ogg, QC, will be of great value.”
The review was announced by Annabelle Ewing, MSP, Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs. It will be chaired by Esther Roberton, current Chair of NHS 24, and a 12-strong review panel will include Laura Dunlop, QC, and Derek Ogg, QC, representing the Faculty.
The Minister said: “The purpose of the review will be to make independent recommendations to reform and modernise the statutory framework for the regulation of legal services and complaints handling. The review is intended to ensure a proportionate approach to regulation that supports growth in the legal services sector. It should also place consumer interests firmly at the heart of any system of regulation, including the competitive provision of legal services.
“The review will focus on the current regulatory framework, the complaints and redress process for providers of legal services including solicitors and advocates, and ongoing market issues such as investigating the benefits of regulating firms as well as individual solicitors.”
It is intended that the review will report to ministers within 15 months.