Coates, Emma Margaret

Date

15 October 2015

Charges

The charges against Ms. Emma Margaret Coates were:

Charge 1 

Failing to conduct yourself in a manner so as to avoid bringing disrepute upon the Institute or its members and/or failing to comply with the Solicitors Accounts Rules 1998, contrary to Paragraphs 1(1) and/or A(4) of the ILEx Code of Conduct and Supporting Guides to Good Practice (2009)

The Particulars were that Emma Coates, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives then engaged in the provision of legal services with CK Solicitors from Clock House, 128 High Street, Selsey, West Sussex, in breach of Rule 15 (2) of the Solicitors Accounts Rules 1998 improperly held money other than client money in client account.

Charge 2 

Failing to conduct yourself in a manner so as to avoid bringing disrepute upon the Institute or its members and/or failing to maintain high standards of professional conduct and/or failing to comply with the Solicitors Accounts Rules 1998 contrary to Paragraphs 1(1) and/or A(4) of The ILEx Code of Conduct and Supporting Guides to Good Practice (2009) and/or Core Principle 2 (inter alia) of the CILEx Code of Conduct 2010.

The Particulars were that Emma Coates, then engaged in the said practice withdrew monies from client account in breach of Rule 22 of the said Accounts Rules and utilized the same for her benefit or for the benefit of others not entitled thereto as follows:- 

(i) Between February and December 2010 she withdrew  £301,771.45 alternatively £303,659.99 from client bank  account utilising a ledger in her name;

(ii) She withdrew £19,542.23 (being part of the sums referred  to in (i) above) from client bank account in respect of  personal payments for Kensington Mortgages, Hot Tub  Barns and drawings; 

(iii) She dishonestly authorised the improper withdrawal of  £4,825.00 being money credited to the ledger of a client Mr  “K”.

Charge 3 

Failing to conduct yourself in a manner so as to avoid bringing disrepute upon the Institute or its members and/or failing to maintain high standards of professional conduct and/or failing to comply with the Solicitors Accounts Rules 1998, contrary to paragraphs 1(1) and/or A(4) of The ILEx Code of Conduct and Supporting Guides to Good Practice (2009) and/or Core Principle 2 (inter alia) of the CILEx Code of Conduct 2010.

The Particulars were that Emma Coates, then engaged in the said practice, in  breach of Rule 32 (16) of the said Accounts Rules maintained a suspense client ledger account which could not be justified.

Charge 4 

Failing to maintain high standards of professional conduct and/or failing to comply with the Solicitors Code of Conduct, contrary to: Core Principle 2 (inter alia) of the CILEx Code of Conduct 2010.

The Particulars were that Emma Coates, then engaged in the said practice, contrary to Rule 20.05 of the Solicitors Code of Conduct failed to deal with the Solicitors Regulation Authority in an open, prompt and cooperative way.

Further Particulars applicable to all charges

In consequence of the said conduct on 22 May 2013 the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal made an Order pursuant to Section 43 of the Solicitors Act 1974 that with effect from such date except in accordance with Law Society permission: 

 (i) no solicitor shall employ or remunerate in connection with his practice as a solicitor Emma Coates of Clock House, 128  High Street, Selsey, West Sussex, PO20 0QE:

 (ii) no employee of a solicitor shall employ or remunerate in connection with the solicitor’s practice the said Emma Coates:

 (iii)no recognised body shall employ or remunerate the said Emma Coates:

 (iv)no manager or employee of a recognised body shall employ or remunerate the said Emma Coates in connection with the  business of that body:

 (v) no recognised body or manager or employee of such a body shall permit the said Emma Coates to be a manager of  the body:

 (vi)no recognised body or manager or employee of such a body shall permit the said Emma Coates to have an interest  in the body: 

And the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal further ordered that the said Emma Coates do pay the costs of and incidental to the application for such Order and enquiry fixed in the sum of £44,152.08.

Outcome

All charges were proved.

Sanction

The Disciplinary Tribunal ordered that Ms. Coates be excluded for five years and a reapplication for CILEx membership will not be considered before this time has passed.