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I think I get it. If you are a solicitor you must be scrupulously honest so as to preserve the high standards expected of our profession.

If so, I've no quarrel. The judgment seemed to me to be entirely right. Even if I've got it wrong.

That fitted the bill when I started and finished my independent career. In present times though - with heaven knows how many licenced authorised or otherwise entities and client centred pressures - it must be very difficult.

The SRA's Code of Conduct read as follows:

"You must:

1. uphold the rule of law and the proper administration of justice;

2. act with integrity;

3. not allow your independence to be compromised;

4. act in the best interests of each client;

5. provide a proper standard of service to your clients;

6. behave in a way that maintains the trust the public places in you and in the provision of legal services;

7. comply with your legal and regulatory obligations and deal with your regulators and ombudsmen in an open, timely and cooperative manner;

8. run your business or carry out your role in the business effectively and in accordance with proper governance and sound financial and risk management principles;

9. run your business or carry out your role in the business in a way that encourages equality of opportunity and respect for diversity;


10. protect client money and assets."

Does this list set up a hierarchy of conduct compliancies? This seems to me to be important because (again as it seems to me) there are tensions between 1, 2, 3, 6 and maybe 7 and 4 and 5.

For what it's worth I think that there is a tension or even a conflict. It needs to be resolved for everyone's - SRA, solicitors and clients - sake.

If the SRA is set adrift as it seems to want - and I have very mixed feelings about regulator, investigator and prosecutor entities being under one controlling mind - then the Law Socity must insist on resolving this tension or conflict.

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