- Application 11570-2016
- Admitted 2007
- Hearing 5-9 June 2017
- Reasons 21 July 2017
The SDT ordered that the respondent should be struck off the roll.
As the sole principal of Thames Chambers Solicitors, a recognised body, the respondent had, contrary to rule 8.6(c) of the SRA’s Authorisation Rules for Legal Services Bodies and Licensable Bodies 2011, employed or remunerated a person who was at the material time a struck-off solicitor, and in so doing had acted in breach of principles 2, 6, 7 and 8 of the SRA Principles 2011, and failed to achieve outcomes 7.2 and/or 7.5 of the SRA Code of Conduct 2011.
She had permitted or allowed a struck-off solicitor to undertake litigation or work ancillary to litigation on behalf of the firm without the requisite permission from the SRA, and in so doing had acted in breach of principles 2, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 10, and failed to achieve outcomes 7.5 and 7.8.
She had claimed fees on behalf of the firm for work in circumstances where she was either unaware of whether that work had been carried out or where that work had been carried out by a struck-off solicitor. And in so doing, had acted in breach of principles 2, 4 and 6, and had failed to achieve outcome 1.2. In so doing, she had acted dishonestly.
She had claimed VAT, despite not being VAT-registered or having any entitlement to do so, and in so doing had failed to achieve outcomes 10.2 and 10.3.
She had permitted or allowed the use of a firm email account by a person or persons other than herself or those employed by her, and by so doing had acted in breach of principles 2, 4, 5, 6 and 8, and failed to achieve outcome 7.8.
The involvement of a struck-off solicitor in a firm was so undermining to the protections put in place by the regulatory system that, combined with a finding of dishonesty, the only appropriate sanction was the respondent’s removal from practice.
The respondent was ordered to pay costs of of £70,123.