Plant, Dawn

Date

01 November 2018

Charges

The charge against Ms Plant were that she failed to: 

(a) maintain high standards of professional conduct and justify public trust in her, her profession and the provision of legal services;
(b) act competently in the best interests of her clients;
(c) ensure that her independence was not compromised; and
(d) act effectively and in accordance with proper governance and risk management principles.

Contrary to: Principles 2, 5, 7 and 8 (and their respective Outcomes) of   the CILEx Code of Conduct 2015.

The particulars to this charge were:

1. Between on or about 20 September 2012 and 19 November 2015 Dawn Alison Plant, then a Chartered Legal Executive in the employ of Pinkney Grunwells Lawyers LLP acted for a client PS in the matter of her wills in the course of which she was appointed executor and trustee and a beneficiary without advising her client to take independent advice alternatively recording or recording adequately such advice;

2. In January 2016 the said Dawn Alison Plant, whilst in the said employ acted for a client DM in the matter of her will in the course of which she was appointed executor and trustee and a beneficiary without advising her client to take independent advice alternatively recording or recording adequately such advice;

3. In April 2016 the said Dawn Alison Plant, whilst in the said employ acted for a client RH in the matter of his will in the course of which she was appointed executor and trustee and a beneficiary without advising her client to take independent advice alternatively recording or recording properly such advice;

4. In consequence of the conduct described in paragraphs 1,2 and 3 on 20 October 2017 the Adjudication Panel of the Solicitors Regulation Authority made an Order pursuant to Section 43 Solicitors Act 1974 (as amended) that no solicitor (inter alia) shall employ or remunerate Dawn Plant except in accordance with a Society permission.

Outcome

Ms Plant admitted the charge on the basis that, in respect of three separate clients, she was appointed executor and trustee and a beneficiary of the respective clients’ wills without recording or recording adequately her advice to the respective clients to take independent advice.

Sanction

The Disciplinary Tribunal decided to impose a Reprimand in respect of the Respondent’s deficiencies in fulfilling her regulatory obligations, together with a Warning as to her future conduct, taking the view that both sanctions were necessary and commensurate with the seriousness of the misconduct in question.