Operators of ‘compare a solicitor’ websites have been invited to apply to make use of the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s data about firms.
The SRA said ‘a suite of core data’ will be available in ‘appropriate electronic form’.
The regulator announced its decision to release the data last August, after pressure from the Legal Services Consumer Panel.
Core data includes the office name, current licence, SRA number, business type, constitution type and contact details. ‘No other detail will be given. No information will be provided on in-house solicitors or unregulated businesses,’ the SRA said.
Paul Philip, chief executive, said: ‘Making information about law firms and solicitors readily available and helpful for both members of the public and businesses looking for legal services is a real priority for us. The public rightly expect to be able to find the information they need easily and many people routinely use comparison websites.
‘Providing core data for use by others is a starting point and we are now looking at what more we can do to make information about the firms we regulate as accessible as possible. We look forward to hearing from comparison websites interested in applying to use data.’
Websites intending to re-use data will need to be signed up to the Legal Services Board Consumer Panel self-assessment standard.