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Public Bill Committee: 14th June 2007                  

273

 

Legal Services Bill [Lords], continued

 
 

Bridget Prentice

 

63

 

Schedule  16,  page  237,  line  33,  at end insert ‘, and

 

(c)    

after “solicitor” (in both places) insert “or any of his employees”.’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment allows the Law Society to disclose a report or information about a solicitor’s ac­

 

counts for use in investigating the possible commission of an offence by the solicitor’s employees.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

64

 

Schedule  16,  page  239,  line  7,  at end insert—

 

            

‘After section 34 insert—

 

“Sole solicitors

 

34A    

Employees of solicitors

 

(1)    

Rules made by the Society may provide for any rules made under

 

section 31, 32, 33A or 34 to have effect in relation to employees of

 

solicitors with such additions, omissions or other modifications as

 

appear to the Society to be necessary or expedient.

 

(2)    

If any employee of a solicitor fails to comply with rules made under

 

section 31 or 32, as they have effect in relation to the employee by

 

virtue of subsection (1), any person may make a complaint in respect

 

of that failure to the Tribunal.

 

(3)    

If any employee of a solicitor fails to comply with rules made under

 

section 34, as they have effect in relation to the employee by virtue of

 

subsection (1), a complaint in respect of that failure may be made to

 

the Tribunal by or on behalf of the Society.

 

34B    

Employees of solicitors: accounts rules etc

 

(1)    

Where rules made under section 32(1) have effect in relation to

 

employees of solicitors by virtue of section 34A(1), section 85 applies

 

in relation to an employee to whom the rules have effect who keeps an

 

account with a bank or building society in pursuance of such rules as

 

it applies in relation to a solicitor who keeps such an account in

 

pursuance of rules under section 32.

 

(2)    

Subsection (3) applies where rules made under section 32—

 

(a)    

contain any such provision as is referred to in section 33(1),

 

and

 

(b)    

have effect in relation to employees of solicitors by virtue of

 

section 34A(1).

 

(3)    

Except as provided by the rules, an employee to whom the rules are

 

applied is not liable to account to any client, other person or trust for

 

interest received by the employee on money held at a bank or building

 

society in an account which is for money received or held for, or on

 

account of—

 

(a)    

clients of the solicitor, other persons or trusts, generally, or

 

(b)    

that client, person or trust, separately.


 
 

Public Bill Committee: 14th June 2007                  

274

 

Legal Services Bill [Lords], continued

 
 

(4)    

Subsection (5) applies where rules made under section 33A(1) have

 

effect in relation to employees of solicitors by virtue of section

 

34A(1).

 

(5)    

The Society may disclose a report on or information about the

 

accounts of any employee of a solicitor obtained in pursuance of such

 

rules for use—

 

(a)    

in investigating the possible commission of an offence by the

 

solicitor or any employees of the solicitor, and

 

(b)    

in connection with any prosecution of the solicitor or any

 

employees of the solicitor consequent on the investigation.

 

(6)    

Where rules made under section 34 have effect in relation to

 

employees of solicitors by virtue of subsection (1), section 34(9) and

 

(10) apply in relation to such an employee as they apply in relation to

 

a solicitor.”’.

 


 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment gives the Law Society certain rule-making powers in relation to employees of sole

 

solicitors; adapts certain accounts rules provisions in relation to such employees; provides for

 

complaints to the Tribunal for certain breaches of these rules; and provides for disclosure of em­

 

ployees’ accounts information in certain circumstances.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

65

 

Schedule  16,  page  242,  line  45,  at end insert—

 

‘(ia)    

no employee of a solicitor shall employ or

 

remunerate, in connection with the solicitor’s

 

practice, the person with respect to whom the order is

 

made,’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment allows the Law Society or the Tribunal to make an order, on one or more of the

 

grounds set out in subsection (1), prohibiting an employee of a solicitor from employing or remu­

 

nerating a person who is the subject of that order.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

185

 

Schedule  16,  page  243,  line  45,  leave out ‘in shares’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment is related to amendment 111. It adjusts the definition of interest in a recognised

 

body to refer to the definition of interest in a body in Clause 72 of the Bill, rather than the former

 

“interest in shares” in a body.


 
 

Public Bill Committee: 14th June 2007                  

275

 

Legal Services Bill [Lords], continued

 
 

Bridget Prentice

 

66

 

Schedule  16,  page  244,  line  6,  after ‘solicitor’, insert ‘, or an employee of a

 

solicitor,’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment is related to amendment 65. As a result of this change a person commits an of­

 

fence if he seeks or accepts employment or remuneration from not only a solicitor, but also an em­

 

ployee of a solicitor, without previously informing the solicitor or employee (see amendment 67)

 

of the order.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

67

 

Schedule  16,  page  244,  line  8,  after ‘solicitor’, insert ‘or employee’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment is consequential on amendment 66.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

186

 

Schedule  16,  page  244,  line  38,  leave out ‘in shares’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment is related to amendment 111. It adjusts the definition of interest in a recognised

 

body to refer to the definition of interest in a body in Clause 72 of the Bill, rather than the former

 

“interest in shares” in a body.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

187

 

Schedule  16,  page  245,  line  5,  leave out ‘in shares’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment is related to amendment 111. It provides that section 44B applies to persons with

 

an interest in a recognised body, rather than persons with an interest in shares in a recognised

 

body. See also amendment 188.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

68

 

Schedule  16,  page  245,  line  11,  after ‘solicitor’, insert ‘or an employee of a

 

solicitor’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment allows the Law Society to give notice under section 44B for the purpose of ascer­

 

taining whether employees of sole solicitors have failed to comply with requirements imposed by

 

or by virtue of the Solicitors Act 1974 or rules by the Law Society.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

69

 

Schedule  16,  page  245,  line  38,  after ‘purpose’, insert ‘—

 

(a)    

’.

 


 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This is a paving amendment for amendment 70.


 
 

Public Bill Committee: 14th June 2007                  

276

 

Legal Services Bill [Lords], continued

 
 

Bridget Prentice

 

70

 

Schedule  16,  page  245,  line  49,  at end insert ‘, and

 

(b)    

the reference to the solicitor or his personal representative in paragraph

 

13 of that Schedule is to be construed as a reference to the person to

 

whom the notice was given under this section.”’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment ensures that paragraph 13 of Schedule 1 to the Solicitors Act 1974 (payment of

 

Law Society’s costs) is applied with modifications for the purposes of enforcing the Law Society’s

 

information powers.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

71

 

Schedule  16,  page  246,  line  15,  leave out ‘reference’ and insert ‘references’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment, combined with amendment 72, ensures that paragraph 9(6) of Schedule 1 to the

 

Solicitors Act 1974 (powers of entry) applies with modifications for the purposes of enforcing the

 

Law Society’s information powers. The modification became necessary because paragraph 9 was

 

amended in the House of Lords (see paragraph 72(9)(g) of Schedule 16).

 

Bridget Prentice

 

72

 

Schedule  16,  page  246,  line  15,  after ‘9(5)’, insert ‘and (6)’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

See explanatory statement for amendment 71.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

73

 

Schedule  16,  page  246,  line  22,  at end insert—

 

‘(7A)    

Where powers conferred by Part 2 of Schedule 1 to the 1974 Act are exercisable

 

in relation to a person within paragraph (a), (b), (c) or (d) of subsection (2), they

 

continue to be so exercisable after the person has ceased to be a person within the

 

paragraph in question.’.

 


 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment ensures that if a person to whom a notice requiring information is given ceases

 

after the notice is given to be a solicitor, solicitor’s employee, recognised body or employee or

 

manager of, or person with an interest in, a recognised body, the enforcement powers will none­

 

theless remain available.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

188

 

Schedule  16,  page  246,  line  28,  leave out ‘in shares’.

 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment is related to amendments 111 and 187. It provides that an interest in a recognised

 

body (see amendment 187) has the same meaning as interest in a body in Clause 72 of the Bill.


 
 

Public Bill Committee: 14th June 2007                  

277

 

Legal Services Bill [Lords], continued

 
 

Bridget Prentice

 

74

 

Schedule  16,  page  246,  line  41,  after ‘purpose’, insert ‘—

 

(a)    

’.

 


 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This is a paving amendment for amendment 75.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

75

 

Schedule  16,  page  247,  line  2,  at end insert ‘, and

 

(b)    

the reference to the solicitor or his personal representative in

 

paragraph 13 of that Schedule is to be construed as a reference to the

 

person to whom the notice was given under this section.”’.

 


 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment ensures that paragraph 13 of Schedule 1 to the Solicitors Act 1974 (payment of

 

Law Society’s costs) is applied with modifications for the purposes of enforcing the Law Society’s

 

information powers.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

76

 

Schedule  16,  page  247,  line  36,  at end insert ‘, and

 

(c)    

the reference to the solicitor or his personal representative in

 

paragraph 13 of that Schedule is to be construed as a reference to the

 

person to whom the notice was given under this section.’.

 


 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment ensures that paragraph 13 of Schedule 1 to the Solicitors Act 1974 (payment of

 

Law Society’s costs) is applied with modifications for the purposes of enforcing the Law Society’s

 

information powers.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

77

 

Schedule  16,  page  248,  line  39,  at end insert—

 

‘(5)    

This section (other than subsection (2)(a)) applies in relation to an

 

employee of a solicitor as it applies in relation to a solicitor.’.

 


 

 

Members’ explanatory statement

 

This amendment is related to amendment 68. It enables the Law Society to charge the costs of an

 

investigation into non-compliance with statutory requirements or rules to an employee of a sole

 

solicitor who is the subject of such an investigation.

 

Bridget Prentice

 

78

 

Schedule  16,  page  248,  line  39,  at end insert—

 

            

‘After that section insert—


 
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