Litigation Rights Application Warning Notice
22 April 2013
CILEx and IPS recognise the need for the Legal Services Board to issue a Warning Notice under Schedule 4 of the Legal Services Act in relation to our litigation rights application.
CILEx is already an Approved Regulator able to grant litigation rights to Associate Prosecutors employed by the Crown Prosecution Service. The current application seeks to extend those rights, by altering the rules, to cover independent practice and entity regulation for all areas of litigation.
The Warning Notice gives the LSB power to consult more widely than is usual for rule changes. IPS Chair, Alan Kershaw commented, ‘We do not think the LSB’s decision in any way indicates the likely outcome of our application in respect of litigation rights. The LSB has only 28 days to make decisions on rule changes, which is not long enough for this very detailed application. It was very clear, following comments made in Parliament when our Associate Prosecutors’ litigation rights application was approved, that this extension would be subjected to careful scrutiny. That is in the public interest. This interim decision by the Board is the proper mechanism to allow it to take place.’
CILEx Persident Nick Hanning added ‘We are confident the LSB will give the litigation rights application the same careful consideration our other applications – probate, conveyancing and immigration - will receive. The qualification, practice management and client protection arrangements are consistent through each of the applications and it was entirely predictable that the LSB should wish to consider them in parallel.’
IPS has submitted applications on behalf of CILEx for it to be designated as an Approved Regulator under the Legal Services Act 2007 in relation to probate and reserved instrument activities (conveyancing) and to alter its rules relating to litigation rights and immigration services. CILEx is already an Approved Regulator for rights of audience exercised by those working in legal firms or departments; and litigation rights for Associate Prosecutors employed by the Crown Prosecution Service. It is also a designated qualifying regulator in relation to immigration advice and services.
A Warning Notice has also been issued in relation to the application to alter CILEx’s immigration practice rules, which incorporate the same qualification, practice management and client protection arrangements as the other applications.
The applications all have to be approved by the Legal Services Board and the Lord Chancellor. The designation applications are automatically subject to comment by the statutory consultees – The Lord Chief Justice, the Office of Fair Trading and the Legal Services Consumer Panel. The necessary Orders by the Lord Chancellor are subject to positive resolution in both Houses of Parliament.