How to Choose Between a Lawyer and Conveyancer
By asking yourself the following questions, you will be able to decide if you want your conveyancing transactions performed by a lawyer or a licensed and experienced conveyancer. Though we do recommend that you work with us because of our dedication to your protection and accurate representation of you in all your conveyancing transactions, the information here is presented honestly to provide you with the opportunity to make a good decision.
How do Property lawyer and licensed conveyancers differ?
Property lawyer are individuals who only have the certification to perform the part of legal work that involves real estate transactions while property lawyer are fully-licensed lawyers whose focus is conveyancing.
The advantage of hiring a property lawyer is that they can handle all the legal work that is relevant to a conveyancing transaction. It is common knowledge that lawyers offer the best legal representation in real estate conveyancing actions.
Do licensed conveyancers charge less than Property lawyer?
Since everyone (even licensed conveyancers) acknowledges that property lawyer are the best choice for transactions, the only ethical method that licensed conveyancers are able to use in order to catch clients is to offer similar services at lower prices.
However, no licensed conveyancers will be able to provide all the services that a lawyer can. What often happens is that a licensed conveyancer will need to refer their client to a lawyer, and the client will have to pay for both.
Referrals by licensed conveyancers are corrupt
Goodman Group Conveyancing is a licensed conveyancing business that has taken to giving out lucrative rewards to estate agents in exchange for client referrals. While this company admits that they pay $150 per referral, many other companies that do the same thing do not openly admit it. (??)
Because licensed conveyancers do not have many resources to compete with lawyers when it comes to service, too many resort to corrupt methods. The consequences of “referral payments” fall unto the shoulders of customers, either through excessive costs or poor service quality.
Who holds the greatest degree of professional indemnity insurance?
Professional indemnity insurance (PI Insurance) is paid out when a professional task has been handled poorly. A Property lawyer usually does carry PI insurance that covers any and all legal activities that the lawyer completes for the client, but the insurance only covers “conveyancing work.” It can be difficult to determine what goes into conveyancing work and what should be handled by another party, so if a licensed conveyancer oversteps their bounds, a client is the one who will have to deal with the consequences.
The Business Licensing Authority offers information to educate licensed conveyancers on their PI insurance in the document, “Professional Indemnity Insurance for Conveyancers licensed in NSW.”
A licensed conveyancer with insurance claims that can be turned down because the claim applies to work “not deemed Conveyancing Work under the Conveyancing Act…” might as well have not bothered to get the insurance in the first place.
What kind of support is available if the situation becomes complicated?
When a conveyancing situation becomes complicated and the law needs to be involved, what will a licensed conveyancer or lawyer do? Most conveyancers are not equipped to handle the complexity and inform the client that they will have to seek legal advice from a lawyer. Lawyers have the resources right at their fingertips needed to deal with the situation, including but not limited to:
- The knowledge and experience needed to assess situations and determine if they are serious or not
- Licensed conveyancers have little or no resources to refer to
- Lawyers can reach out to other lawyers and experts for advice
Conveyancing & Legal Best Practice: LAW 9000
The simplest way to identify the most reliable conveyancing service is to check the company’s certification to the Australian standard for legal services – Legal Best Practice LAW9000.
LAW9000 – Legal Best Practice is a standard that is based on the globally-acknowledged ISO 9001. It also adheres to the best-practice requirements that are specific to legal action.
To become accredited, a law firm is required to have practices that guarantee high client satisfaction at a minimised risk. An important part of this certification is to make sure that no conflicts of interest are present.
The accreditation process involves the development of detailed and honest processes that results in a thorough audit performed by external authorities. The audit inspects every part of the law firm to be sure that they are holding to the proper standards. Audited areas include but are not limited to:
- The firm’s dedication to quality;
- Dedication to satisfying all clients;
- Human Resource methods;
- Business and risk management plans;
- Practices for the delivery of legal services;
- Professional obligations of the legal industry; and
- Internal evaluation and improvement.
Conveyancer Sydney meets these standards and holds accreditation as a LAW 9000 Legal Best Practice law firm.
The future of real estate and conveyancing
The conveyancing business has fallen into disarray and routinely commits unethical practices. Those providing conveyancing services must prove that those services they offer can be trusted and are of the best quality so that the old days of corruption can be pushed aside.
The best course of action for a conveyancing client to be sure that they will receive the best services for their time and money is to hire a property lawyer that is certified as a meeting the requirements of the LAW9000 Legal Best Practice.