Compliance with next week's deadline set by the EU alternative dispute resolution (ADR) directive is the latest carrot offered to solicitors in the increasingly competitive legal comparison website market.
Accesssolicitor.com, which claims to list more than 20,000 lawyers, has announced a tie-up with online and telephone mediation service Pro Mediate. The service claims to be one of only three ADR entities authorised by the Chartered Trading Standard Institute to deal with complaints against lawyers.
Under the consumer ADR directive, solicitors must direct clients to an ADR option for complaint resolution from 1 October 2015. The Law Society updated its guidance on compliance earlier this month after the Office for Legal Complaints withdrew its application to become an ADR entity pending a consultation.
Accesssolicitor.com, set up in August 2013, said that lawyers registering before 1 October will have access to the Pro Mediate client mediation service for £1 per lawyer per month.
Pro Mediate’s founder, Peter Causton, said: 'Lawyers are required to comply with the ADR directive and Access Solicitor shares our core value of helping the customer, so they were an obvious partner choice.'
Competition in the legal services website market appears to be heating up this autumn as comparison sites jostle for market share. Next weekend, the comparison site VouchedFor will sponsor a supplement in the Mail on Sunday, ranking 2,500 of its listed solicitors by client ratings.