Specialist marketing agency, JE Consulting, is warning law firms across England and Wales that they need to act now to amend their website and marketing material in line with the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s (SRA’s) new pricing transparency rules.
From 7 December 2018, new rules will be enacted that require law firms to publish detailed information on their website relating to pricing, methods of billing and likely timescales for service delivery.
The new rules come following calls from the Competition and Markets Authority to make the profession more transparent in its pricing after it was identified as one of the sector’s main weaknesses in a 2016 report.
Firms will also be expected to outline the skills and qualifications of the solicitor working on matters relating to each service and the names and qualifications of the respective supervisor of that work in a wider measure to provide enough information for a client to make an informed decision before instructing a firm.
The rules will initially affect those firms offering services for residential conveyancing, probate, motoring offences, employment tribunals, licensing applications for business premises, immigration, and debt recovery services.
While some firms already provide some level of detail on their website in relation to their costs, Jo Edwards, a Director at JE Consulting, is concerned that many more practices are underprepared for the change, which is now just weeks away.
She said: “Having spoken with a number of legal practices in the last few months we can see that there is a growing concern about the requirements to publish these details, in particular, the scale of the changes required and the short time frame left to comply.
“While some firms may be reluctant to share this data over fears that it might affect their competitiveness, it’s an official requirement under the SRA regulations, which means that it is unavoidable and it is therefore integral that firms start to prepare now, as it can take some time to properly prepare and publish this information.
“We are already working with a number of legal firms to prepare their websites for this significant change, including offering assistance to prepare compliant content.”
If you would like to know how JE Consulting can help you with your preparations for the SRA price transparency rules, please visit https://www.je-consulting.co.uk/sectors/solicitors/sra-transparency-rules/ or call 0121 355 4774.