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A regulator must learn 
from its mistakes

The SRA’s downplaying of issues which are extremely serious for individual solicitors ?is not encouraging, writes Susanna Heley

17 November 2015

In last month’s column (SJ159/38), I included some commentary about the case of SRA v Chan and Ali. I noted the very explicit criticisms made by the High Court of the way the SRA had framed its case. That message could not have been clearer. One would have thought that any organisation which had received such criticism would have at least noted it and taken the message back to assess what lessons could be learned. 

On 7 October, the SRA’s legal and enforcement directorate made its report to the SRA’s regulatory risk committee. ?It devoted six of 22 paragraphs ?to the Chan and Ali case yet ?made no mention of the specific criticism directed at the regulator regarding the formulation of ?its charges. 

The court said: ‘This sort of drafting – whether in the context of Solicitors’ Disciplinary Tribunal (SDT) proceedings or any other kind of disciplinary or regulatory proceedings – is unacceptable. ?It would not be toler...

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