Saturday, March 03, 2012

Law Society’s database on solicitors “Too Toxic” to publish, public access to complaints info, horrific treatment of clients ‘may bankrupt’ law firms

LSWould consumers still trust lawyers if they were able to access full information on solicitors & law firms ? CALLS for the Law Society of England & Wales to share its database on solicitors with comparison websites have been resoundingly rejected by the legal profession, almost certainly on the basis of fears that clients & consumers will quickly desert law firms & solicitors across the country if consumers were to have access to the true scale of complaints against the legal profession. The claims made by campaigners & information access reformers come after it was reported last month Des Hudson, the £400K-A-YEAR Chief Executive of the Law Society of England & Wales swiftly rejected calls from the Legal Services Consumer Panel for regulators to opening up their professional registers so that the websites can provide basic information to consumers about the different services offered by law firms.

A report carried out by the Legal Services Consumer Panel looked at the barriers facing the emergence of comparison websites based on interviews with the industry. One practical barrier identified was a lack of access to professional registers held by approved regulators, meaning that comparison websites cannot obtain, in a usable form, even the basic information about lawyers, such as their contact details and areas of specialism. The report, which can be downloaded here : Legal Services Consumer Panel's report on comparison websites in legal services (pdf) recommended that approved regulators open up their professional registers for this and other purposes.

Elisabeth Davies, Chair of the Legal Services Consumer Panel, said: “Comparison websites are a welcome new feature in legal services as they could make it easier for consumers to choose lawyers and boost competition. But experience in other sectors has shown there are also risks – we are calling on website operators to demonstrate their commitment to consumer protection by signing up to some common sense good practice standards.”

She continued : “It’s staggering that so many lawyers are refusing leads generated through comparison websites. Consumers are unlikely to use these services again if they get turned away – it’s a massive own goal by the profession. There are a series of hurdles that comparison websites need to overcome before they are a major influence on consumer choice. Approved regulators could help break down these barriers by opening up their professional registers so that the websites can provide basic information to consumers about the different services offered by law firms.”

Predictably, the Law Society of England & Wales refused to share its own data on solicitors, its Chief Executive, Des Hudson who recently ended the right of clients to post their reviews & comments on experiences with solicitors on the well known website Solicitors From Hell, said the Law Society would not be sharing its data with the Legal Services Consumer Panel, or any other website not under the control of the legal profession.

One access to information campaigner from Brighton who has been involved in a long running campaign to free up solicitor’s complaints records in England & Wales told Diary of Injustice : “Clearly the Law Society of England & Wales do not want its own data on its solicitors, data which contains the appalling regulatory history of tens of thousands of solicitors & law firms across the country from falling into consumer hands, simply because if clients were to find out what their supposedly trustworthy solicitor has done to other clients, they will run a mile”

While the Law Society of England & Wales have refused to share data on their solicitors, consumers can still visit websites such as Solicitors from Hell 2 & Cowboy Solicitors from Hell to find out more about their solicitor, or perhaps post a review of their experiences at the hands of a lawyer.

Readers will of course be well aware the same problems exist in Scotland, where clients & consumers are not able to find out anything about their solicitors complaints records or how they have handled other legal work for clients. However, unlike in England & Wales, Scots consumers of legal services have no organisation such as the Legal Services Consumer Panel to call for a complete disclosure on all solicitors records to be made to the public.

The Law Society of Scotland’s own ‘too toxic to publish’ database on the Penmans, O’Donnells, Lockharts, McCabes, Danskins and more would probably shock so many Scottish clients, they too may do a runner from their lawyer’s office, and deservedly so.

41 comments:

Anonymous said...

So the English Law Society also has too much to hide and too much to be afraid of - what a coincidence!

Anonymous said...

So the English Law Society also has too much to hide and too much to be afraid of - what a coincidence!

Anonymous said...

Well if customers find out the lawyer has ruined a few other clients it is be hardly surprising they will avoid using the same lawyer..

We have a right to know what lawyers get up to.It should all be published.

Anonymous said...

Far more "toxic" is the Chief Executive's salary.Who the hell approved the 400K and endless expenses we will never hear about?

Anonymous said...

Solicitors from Hell 2 has some good posts on it..

Anonymous said...

Another very good article.

As I have said previously - the fight for justice and transparency also continues on the Law Society Gazette's own blog which is open to all to comment. It is a bastion of live time free speech but don't tell Hudson that.

I started contributing there a few months ago and now most solicitors avoid debate with me. I wonder why.

http://www.lawgazette.co.uk/

Anonymous said...

So what if the Law Society dont want to share their database with consumers.We can make one ourselves from what WE know lawyers specialise in rather than what THEY tell us or CLAIM to specialise in!

Most lawyers I've met specialise in BULLSHIT.They claim to know about this or that or have handled cases about whatever yet when it comes to needing them to do something about whatever it is in front of them it takes years lots of money and ends up a failure.

Anyone who uses a lawyer has a duty now to put up on the internet how they have been treated and what it was all about.We dont need any confidences or secrets exposed just the goods on the lawyers to make sure others dont fall into the same trap.Its not too much to ask now is it!

Keep up the good work Mr Cherbi and the DoI team!

Anonymous said...

The Law Society of Scotland’s own ‘too toxic to publish’ database on the Penmans, O’Donnells, Lockharts, McCabes, Danskins and more would probably shock so many Scottish clients, they too may do a runner from their lawyer’s office, and deservedly so.

WELL SAID !!!

Anonymous said...

Good to see you giving the poor old english a hand again Peter.

Lawyers must be as rotten down there as it is up here!

Anonymous said...

Too much to hide of course and I back the campaign to make all this information about lawyers public

Better to see what we are getting into before hiring one of the toads!

Also just so you know it has taken me 5 tries through this stupid captcha box to get the comment in

Anonymous said...

What has our society come to when our Law Society's are so corrupted by evil that they demand the right to defend crooked lawyers and to cover up and conceal their crimes?

They are terrified that we (the public) find out how long this has being going on for and how many crooked lawyers there are.

The very notion that these Society's are perpetuating a culture where crooked lawyers are protected and therefor subjected onto innocent consumers shows that they are by definition unlawful entities and should be shut down.

Due to theses Society's concerted efforts to conceal criminality of their members over time and to exert undue influence onto the Procurators to protect their fellow crooked lawyers, they have become nothing more than Society's for professional liars.

If they are so pure and have characters above reproach (as they would like us to believe!) then publish the data to prove it?

As Alexandor the meerkat would undoubtfully say.....Simples

Anonymous said...

To all viewers:

In what percentile range do you think the number of Scottish Solicitors who have had serious complaints against lie in?

A - 20 to 29%

B - 30 to 39%

C - 40 to 49%

D - HIGHER THAN 50%

Answers should be interesting?

Anonymous said...

Sounds like the whole UK is under the thumbs of the legal profession.

Anonymous said...

A glance down the right hand column of this website is proof enough all information held on solicitors including their complaints records must be publicly available.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
So what if the Law Society dont want to share their database with consumers.We can make one ourselves from what WE know lawyers specialise in rather than what THEY tell us or CLAIM to specialise in!

Most lawyers I've met specialise in BULLSHIT.They claim to know about this or that or have handled cases about whatever yet when it comes to needing them to do something about whatever it is in front of them it takes years lots of money and ends up a failure.

Anyone who uses a lawyer has a duty now to put up on the internet how they have been treated and what it was all about.We dont need any confidences or secrets exposed just the goods on the lawyers to make sure others dont fall into the same trap.Its not too much to ask now is it!

Keep up the good work Mr Cherbi and the DoI team!

4 March 2012 11:10

How true - all of it!

Anonymous said...

The LSCP are only asking for the background information already available from the Law Society to be made more widely available.

I think they have to step up a gear and ask for everything.Of course the Law Society could doctor its own records they probably do this anyway.

Anonymous said...

Interesting one again Peter and it really stands out now the Law Society want to control all information about solicitors whether its in the newspapers or on the internet.

Bravo to the websites who expose lawyers to the truths we all need to know!

Anonymous said...

Are the English Law Society taking their cues from the Scottish one or vice versa?

Anyway all this secrecy demonstrates there is a big problem with lawyers and clients over who knows what about the other.

Its time this was all changed so we know everything about lawyers!

Anonymous said...

The Law Society could be made to turn over their database if the Legal Services Consumer Panel made a complaint to the OFT..

Anonymous said...

Well done and a great headline.Beats the crap out of the lawyers websites talking it down as some kind of Law Society will save lawyer's privacy stuff.

You really should be writing in the newspapers as well this fine blog!

Anonymous said...

The Law Society is like any other so called regulator, a joke. It is impossible to get justice against any so called bureaucratic regulator because they fill the organisations with like minded people.

Peter Cherbi and the DOI team are doing what I call regulating, exposing the rotten bureaucratic system to the public. I shudder when I hear or read the words independent regulator. I am convinced only victims of bureaucratic tyranny can police these people. This blog is proof of this fact.

Anonymous said...

Anyone who uses a lawyer has a duty now to put up on the internet how they have been treated and what it was all about.We dont need any confidences or secrets exposed just the goods on the lawyers to make sure others dont fall into the same trap.Its not too much to ask now is it.
===============================
I totally agree, and I have said many times an E bay feedback system for lawyers. Oh yes let the clients tell the public of their experiences and we will see the legal profession tumble into a black hole of their own making. The more people find out what is going on the more trust will be erroded in the profession. The Law Societies know this truth and are terrified of it.

I got a letter sent to claim PPI and I sent it back saying I do not trust the legal profession. Look at the old lady who went to Neils Lockhart in Kilmarnock because she had a problem with her council. Lockhart gave her a bigger problem. I would never trust any lawyer and I urge others to do the same.

Anonymous said...

Horrific treatment of clients. All you people who have not dealt with lawyers, I can tell you I know they are radical evil, they will do anything to you for money are protection of the profession.

Gangsters use machine guns, Lawyers use a hidden complaints system that is terror by bureaucracy, they control everything and leave people rightless. Dealing with the Law Society leaves people with scars that are there for life. This is why I passionately believe it is out duty to warn those who can be potential victims. If people knew what we know about this evil network of criminals the trust the public have in lawyers would vanish overnight. But is is slowly vanishing and that is what lawyers are terrified of.

Anonymous said...

When criminals police their own activities this is the result.

Anonymous said...

“Clearly the Law Society of England & Wales do not want its own data on its solicitors, data which contains the appalling regulatory history of tens of thousands of solicitors & law firms across the country from falling into consumer hands, simply because if clients were to find out what their supposedly trustworthy solicitor has done to other clients, they will run a mile”
==================================
Hudson is a bigger fool than I thought he was, I mean I know he is not an idiot but this just screams out the public must never trust lawyers. He has ideas above his station, he is a man not a god and therefore subject to scrutiny from others.

These Law Societies, Hudson during the war the slogan was careless talk costs lives. In your case careless control of lawyer files means loosing clients.

Anonymous said...

Trust lawyer trash and you deserve all you get.

Anonymous said...

David Cameron has dismissed an accusation from one of his own backbenchers that he is out of touch with voters because of his privileged upbringing.

Mid-Bedfordshire MP Nadine Dorries, a frequent critic of the government, told the Financial Times that the prime minister and chancellor George Osborne's plans to cut child benefit for middle income families was misplaced.

"The problem is that policy is being run by two public school boys who don’t know what it’s like to go to the supermarket and have to put things back on the shelves because they can’t afford it for their children’s lunchboxes," she said.

She added: "What’s worse, they don’t care either.”
----------------------------------
Cameron and his pal are just Thatchers without the handbag. They would gas the unemployed if they could.

Anonymous said...

“A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself.
For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist.
A murderer is less to fear.”

Marcus Tullius Cicero

Describes politicians who allow a legal dictatorship to dominate, plunder and torture their clients.

Salmond and Cameron have very much in common.

Anonymous said...

One access to information campaigner from Brighton who has been involved in a long running campaign to free up solicitor’s complaints records in England & Wales told Diary of Injustice : “Clearly the Law Society of England & Wales do not want its own data on its solicitors, data which contains the appalling regulatory history of tens of thousands of solicitors & law firms across the country from falling into consumer hands, simply because if clients were to find out what their supposedly trustworthy solicitor has done to other clients, they will run a mile”
===============================
STAY AWAY FROM THEM BECAUSE ALL LAWYERS ARE EVIL CALCULATING PARASITES WHO RUIN YOU, THEIR COLLEAGUES KICK YOU INTO THE GUTTER AND EXPECT YOU TO LIE THERE. IF EVER A PROFESSION DESERVED THE TITLE OF SUPERBASTARDS THEY ARE IT.

Anonymous said...

No win no fee, lawyers got £75,000.00 client got £13,000.00. If you are on legal aid layer still gets paid you get £0.00.

Legal Aid is free money for lawyers because they dont need to do anything for you.

Anonymous said...

Scotland’s Crown Office & Lord Advocate refused to prosecute FOURTEEN lawyers for legal aid fraud.
==============================
No doubt those who refuse to prosecute help themselves to the pot too. These people ARE THE LAW that is why they do not prosecute.

Anonymous said...

The reason the Law Society is getting away with what it wants is because there is no effective protest group either in Scotland or in England & Wales.

If someone bothers to change this and put real people on the ground in an orderly coherent manner then things will change much faster.

You all know I am correct.

Anonymous said...

Thank you to the contributor of 7 March 2012 22:28

An apt reminder of Cicero's keen intellect, and a reminder of what slow learners we are.

Until a political party has the will to abolish self regulation, and with it the influence and perks politicians derive from it, change will come slowly, if at all.

Anonymous said...

Would consumers still trust lawyers if they were able to access full information on solicitors & law firms ?
=================================
I pity any consumer who trusts any lawyer. If bank robbers were never punished robberies would be endemic. Lawyers rob clients knowing full well only the client can expose them. This is why web sites are critical. Feedback from clients bypasses Law society spin and Hudson and his Scottish cronies hate it.

Anonymous said...

At the end of the day going to a lawyer is too toxic for most - its a dead cert you are going to get ripped off one way or another.

best to avoid the whole nasty experience by presuming they are crooked.Everyone keeps telling us we have to declare everything about ourselves so lawyers are not a special case.

Anonymous said...

I have a good one for you Peter,about a solicitor in Glasgow who is supposed to have stolen £160k from his clients.The SLCC and Law Society are trying to keep a lid on it can you look into it instead?

Anonymous said...

Ex Police Officer employed by South Lanarkshire Council resigned and refused to doctor a report at the request of Council managers so that council employee causing problems was exonerated and innocent family framed. Innocent family have had four years of hell.

Hamilton Advertiser Thursday 8th March 2012.

Anonymous said...

The Law Society are destroying the institution of trust between the legal profession and the public and they are too hostile to do anything to mitigate it.

When I hear the word lawyer I cringe and tell whoever said it I will never trust any lawyer under any circumstances. They are bad news, as I learned the hard way.

Diary of Injustice said...

8 March 2012 18:58

Sounds good, send it in to scotishlawreporters@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

My experience has learned me to never ever trust a lawyer.If a lawyer makes a mistake ,he will have spotted his mistake long before the client ,and will take steps to cover it up or divert it back to the client, the client can be quite oblivious as to what is going on , but the time comes when the shit hits the fan,and it is then when other lawyers become involved and try to cover up for their"learned friends" and even when their has been malpractice they still continue to cover up,this makes them part of the crime and should be named and shamed along with politicians who are playing a part in this now totally out of hand breach of ethics which is dragging the legal system into the gutter, correction IT IS ALREADY IN THE GUTTER.

Anonymous said...

If the Law Society of Scotland was forced to publish all of it's member's regulatory statistics on the Monday, the Law Society of Scotland would cease to exist on the Tuesday!