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CILEx regulation raises concerns in SRA consultation response

CILEx regulation raises concerns in SRA consultation response


The consultation seeks input on proposals regarding the regulation of non-authorised CILEX members, encompassing CILEX students, affiliates, and paralegals

CILEx Regulation (CRL) has voiced its apprehensions in response to the Solicitors Regulation Authority's (SRA) ongoing consultation, which was initiated on March 20, 2024. 

CRL's primary concern revolves around the broader issue of the lawfulness and legitimacy of CILEX's proposals to transfer regulatory responsibility from CRL to the SRA, which remains unanswered. The organisation underscores several key apprehensions in its response, notably regarding the regulation of the 25% of individuals who currently do not work in SRA-regulated firms.

Additionally, CRL emphasises the importance of attributing the cost of regulation to unauthorised members who benefit from such oversight. Moreover, the organisation stresses the necessity of robust arrangements for overseeing the ongoing competence and professional development of unauthorised members.

Jonathan Rees, Chair of CRL, emphasised the significant role played by the organisation in regulating all CILEX practitioners, including non-authorised lawyers, over the past decade. He expressed appreciation for the efforts of both the SRA and CILEX to address these issues but highlighted that the current proposals fall short of existing levels of protection.

Jonathan Rees articulated specific concerns regarding the regulation of the 25% of non-authorised CILEX members not affiliated with SRA-regulated firms, highlighting potential risks such as dilution of regulatory coverage and rigour, particularly in areas like ongoing competence. Such dilution, Jonathan Rees argues, could lead to diminished protection and consumer confusion.

In essence, while welcoming attempts to address regulatory challenges, CRL underscores the importance of ensuring that any regulatory framework adequately protects both the public and regulated professionals. The organisation advocates for a specialist regulator, contending that such an approach best serves the interests of all stakeholders involved.