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Road to ruin

The SRA's publication policy can damage a firm's reputation forever. Don’t believe it will affect you? Think again, warns Susanna Heley

28 February 2011

Everyone knows the collective reputation of the solicitors’ profession should be its greatest asset. That is why solicitors found to have been dishonest are almost invariably struck off. The SRA seems to have a policy of appealing against decisions of the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal which find dishonesty but do not strike off the solicitor in question. These appeals have met with some success.

Although it is not the primary function of the SRA to protect the reputation of the profession, I believe it is part of their remit. It is in the public interest to ensure a strong legal profession which has the trust of the public. The SRA must have regard to the public interest in all that it does.

However, some think the SRA’s implementation of its publication policy is potentially damaging to the profession. Obviously the SRA must be transparent and publically accountable for the decisions it makes, but do these decisions really meet these objectives and are they fair...

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