Firms not required to adopt the LawStore branding or pricing
LawStore, a high street brand operated by MTA Solicitors, has said it will open branches in Cambridge and London in the next six months.
LawStore currently has a shop only at the Glades shopping centre in Bromley, which opened in 2010. MTA, a civil litigation firm, has offices in Manchester, Bromley and Urmston.
A spokesman for MTA said law firms would be offered the chance to join a panel and receive referrals “through the unique combination of the LawStore website, the LawStore contact centre and the high street shops, which they can also help set up and run.”
He went on: “The LawStore is not currently operating a fee share or referral fee model and until further notice panel membership is free.
“Firms are not required to adopt LawStore branding or pricing, although they will not be allowed to undercut the LawStore. Only two firms in each area will be able to join the panel.”
The spokesman said LawStores would be located in areas of high footfall, such as shopping centres, offering consumers immediate access to a lawyer if they wanted, as well as appointments and drop-in clinics.
“The LawStore website, powered by document-automation provider Direct Law, will include pages for each participating firm, distributing enquiries on the basis of region and skill set. The MTA call centre will do likewise with telephone enquiries.”
He added that Kent law firm Judge & Priestly and London-based litigation practice Taylor Hampton have signed up to the scheme.
MTA chief executive David Green said: “The LawStore provides solicitors with an opportunity to become part of a national network of law firms, providing direct support and assistance to people and businesses who need legal assistance of all types.
“We want to ensure that our customers receive the best legal advice and we will only work with solicitors who can meet ours and our customers’ service expectations.
“This is about like-minded law firms standing together against new competition, while not compromising their individual values and independence.”