Solicitors selling their own client down the river
B’s company went into insolvency and the bank was pursuing B for £300k under a personal guarantee. B approached us late in the process, as the bank were pursuing very aggressively and were on the brink commencing court proceedings.
The solicitors, acting on behalf of our client, were a small firm who were not well versed in dealing with these situations; being a firm that mostly dealt with conveyance, matrimonial and probate issues. They advised their client that because it was a bank there was no alternative other than to settle the amount in full.
On reviewing the file of communications between the client’s solicitor, and the bank’s, it was clear that they were in awe of the bank and it’s solicitors and it was even clearer that the bank’s solicitors were aware of this and pressing home their psychological advantage.
On appointment we contacted the bank’s solicitors and entered a negotiation process that settled the matter for £165k.
This is just one of many examples we see where a solicitor is acting beyond their skill set. Whilst there are some solicitors who do have the necessary skill set to deal with such negotiations and, in some cases, understand personal guarantee law sufficiently, so often solicitors are acting way out of their depth. In working with any professional it is so important to understand the experience they have in the area concerned and to ask for written case studies and testimonials from those whom they have acted on behalf of in similar matters.
19 January, 2015 by Katie Lancaster