• Application 11724-2018
  • Admitted 2008
  • Hearing 23 January 2018
  • Reasons 8 February 2018

The SDT ordered that the respondent should be struck off the roll. 

The respondent had sent an identity certificate of satisfaction, loan facility letter and legal mortgage over a property to J Solicitors, in which he had confirmed that his client F had signed the documents in his presence when that was not true; and in respect of the identity certificate of satisfaction, he had certified that he had witnessed the execution of legal documents for each borrower (F and A) separately and independently of the other, when that was not true, in breach of principles 2 and 6 of the SRA Principles 2011. He had acted dishonestly.

He had attempted to mislead J Solicitors by stating that his clients

F and A had both attended his office in person to sign documents, when that was not true, in breach of principles 2 and 6. He had acted dishonestly.

It appeared that the respondent’s motivation was to complete the property purchase for his clients in time. His misconduct was spontaneous rather than planned; they were existing clients for whom he had conducted previous transactions and they wanted the documents in this one passed to the other side urgently.

There was no evidence of financial harm; the loan transaction had not proceeded. However, considerable harm had been caused because such activity was harmful to the whole conveyancing system and to the reputation of the profession. The respondent had shown a certain amount of insight.

He had made reference in a letter to his mental health having suffered but he had produced no medical evidence. There were no exceptional circumstances so striking off was an appropriate and proportionate sanction. He was ordered to pay costs of £4,980.