Sponsored by Master Policy Insurers Marsh & HSBC Bank, Law Society of Scotland’s annual conference debates way forward for lawyers. THE LAW SOCIETY OF SCOTLAND, the infamous anti-consumer regulator of complaints against crooked Scottish solicitors, holds its ‘one profession’ conference tomorrow, Tuesday 6 September at the ‘plush’ Glasgow Hilton. The event is sponsored by well known UK Based bank HSBC and the Law Society’s own Master Policy insurers, MARSH, the convicted of bid rigging in the US insurance broker firm linked in an independent report to the suicides of clients who dared approach the courts & Master Policy to recover funds stolen by crooked Scottish lawyers.
‘Law in Scotland – One Profession’, which, according to those in the know may be better described as One Profession, One Big Client Rip Off, is being held on Tuesday 6 September at the Glasgow Hilton. Attendees expected, mostly solicitors and those from the legal establishment will be those who have rather large financial interests in making the legal profession as profitable as possible, stepping on as many clients along the way as is humanly possible.
Marsh, the Master Policy insurers co sponsor this year’s conference, along with HSBC Bank. This year’s event at the Glasgow Hilton, itself the scene of various cosy lunches between law firms, universities & the Scottish Government which appear to have influenced the awarding of multi million pound publicly funded contracts to Scots law firms, is, according to the Law Society’s website, structured around 6 streams each focusing on highly topical issues for Sole Practitioners, High Street firms, In House, Big Firms, Legal Aid practitioners and New Lawyers.
Topics for tomorrow’s conference, (with the reality check in bold for consumers), include:
1. Winning more business from existing clients and new clients (and ripping them off through a variety of well tried & tested fraudulent methods, safe in the knowledge you are going to get away with it)
2. Tenders & Procurement: What Corporates look for in a law firm (Bribes, blackmail, backhanders, hospitality, access to crooked politicians, sympathetic or crooked members of the judiciary etc)
3. Ensuring your income from Legal Aid (and ensuring the Crown Office doesn’t prosecute you for stealing millions in legal aid by calling in the Legal Defence Union & favours from the Law Society)
4. Dealing with Difficult Clients (How to harass clients into withdrawing their complaint, sending someone round to threaten to burn their house down if they don’t, threatening client’s children (in one case, rape), use of corrupt Police Officers to threaten arrest, having a client’s home repossessed, breaking up their family, provoking a client into suicide (becoming increasingly popular)
5. Building your Professional Network (Meeting up with crooked colleagues from all walks of life & professions including the criminal underworld who may be of use in the future)
6. Your clients want WHAT? (none of the above, just a honest job on their case rather than it being strung out for a few years just to generate huge fees and a few rip offs including thefts from wills & property.
Despite the Law Society of Scotland claiming to represent both the legal profession and the public interest in legal issues & regulation of the profession, clients are not welcome at the event, however, the two faces of what the Law Society preaches as “Client Relations” versus what “Client Relations” actually is, will most certainly be discussed.
The Law Society of Scotland will have the public believe “Client Relations” is about dealing with client complaints effectively and ensuring clients are well protected from mishaps in their relationship with their solicitor or the legal profession as a whole. As many readers & consumers now know, through the power of the alternative & online media to that of the legal profession, the reverse is true.
Fact. In reality, experiences of real clients, rather than third party script writers show ”Client Relations” is in truth, about sending a client round so many twists & turns in the legal world, ending up with a law firm that represents & defends crooked lawyers, and is acknowledged to have intervened to prevent criminal charges against corrupt solicitors in legal aid fraud cases, that the client, a married family man was provoked into suicide after well over three years of torture at the hands of the Scottish legal profession and its many tentacles.
Prior to tomorrow’s conference, some sections of the media have been helping the Scottish legal profession over the past few weeks to promote itself as an honest bunch, albeit with ‘imperfections’ which can be easily put right. The usual, now incredibly worn script is followed – a lawyer can only achieve what is possible, not always what the client wants, and of course, the lawyer should put right mistakes immediately, something which invariably does not happen.
However, the same tired arguments & ostensibly the same articles written by solicitors and some of the most senior officials from the Law Society in newspapers since the early 1990’s, have done nothing to stem rising client fraud committed by members of the legal profession over the past two decades, and noticeably have spoke nothing about the rising numbers of client deaths, home repossessions & sheer outright harassment which clients have experienced at the hands of vindictive solicitors & law firms who have in recent times started to use the courts to recover alleged fee notes for work which never took place.
So worrying is the silence on the consumer’s point of view and actual experiences of genuine clients with genuine grievances, it is as if there is a media blackout of clients woes in some sections of the press, and when someone dares to point it out, or write about the issue on their own, a national newspaper tags along with the profession to in a concerted attempt to silence criticism. Clearly, no accident, according to how one journalist told it.
Law Society of Scotland “Client Relations” ensures solicitors interests come first before consumer protection. Clearly, enough time has passed where more & more experiences of clients ruined by their solicitors have hit the internet based media, showing without a doubt, clients usually receive the sharp end of the stick from their solicitors and the legal profession once a fraud has taken place, and upon receipt of an actual complaint by a client, the Law Society of Scotland will despatch the likes of the Legal Defence Union and a charity called “Law Care” to help the solicitor out of their ‘difficulties’ by any means possible, while the client is left with no support, no help, no one to speak for them, and certainly no return of what is now typically tens of thousands of pounds stolen from their funds.
While the Law Society gives lectures to its masses, and consumers about “how to deal with difficult clients”, the truth of how the Scottish legal profession perceives & deals with complaints is reflected in what one well known solicitor in an interview about how to deal with difficult clients once said.
Referring to an example where a client had considerable cause to complain to the Law Society of Scotland about the loss of hundreds of thousands of pounds, the solicitor said : “He should have a shotgun stuck in his mouth and the trigger pulled.”
This, is the attitude, and indeed the practice of the legal profession and the Law Society of Scotland when dealing with complaints against their colleagues.
Prevention is better than Penman : Want to prevent this happening to you ? Avoid going through the doors of a lawyer’s office if you can help it. If you want to avoid what happens next, ask yourself do you really want to put yourself and your family through a living hell dealing with the legal nightmare which comes after dealing with a solicitor. Take it from someone who has already been through the system, if you want to prevent Penman happening to you, think again about how you use your money in these troubled financial times, and don’t go wasting it on the fantasy services provided by many Scottish law firms, services which quickly degenerate into dishonesty and just another escapade in taking as much money from you as possible, without being able to achieve the desired result in law, where you will invariably end up as the victim.
MURDER ON THE LAW SOCIETY EXPRESS : How the Master Policy’s killer streak protects Scots solicitors :
After the release of the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission’s investigation into the claims process against solicitors, harsh evidence emerged of the human cost to clients, where suicides, illness (some resulting in death), family break ups and huge financial losses are the horrific consequences sustained by members of the public who have tried to make claims against the Law Society of Scotland’s ‘Master Policy’ insurance scheme, touted by the legal profession as protecting lawyers and clients but which the ground breaking report released by Manchester University School of Law on Monday reveals “is simply designed to allow lawyers to sleep at night.”
Suicides, illness, family breakdown, loss of homes, loss of livelihood were all identified by interviewees as being directly associated with members of the public’s dealings with the Law Society & Master Policy. During the research team’s investigation of claims against the Master Policy, team members were told of suicides which had occurred due to the way in which clients of crooked lawyers had been treated by the Law Society of Scotland and the insurers who operate the Master Policy protection scheme for solicitors against negligence claims. Quoting the report : “Several claimants said that they had been diagnosed with depression; that they had high blood pressure; and several had their marriages fail due to their claim. Some had lost a lot of money, their homes, and we were told that one party litigant had committed suicide.”
Further excerpts from the Manchester University report into the Law Society’s Master Policy & Guarantee Fund show the intolerable strain clients who attempt to claim against their ‘crooked’ solicitor have to endure : Claimants “described being intimidated, being forced to settle rather than try to run a hearing without legal support, and all felt that their claims’ outcomes were not fair. Some claimants felt that they should have received more support, and that this lack was further evidence of actors within the legal system being “against” Master Policy claimants. Judges were described as being “former solicitors”, members of the Law Society – and thus, against claimants. Some described judges and other judicial officers as being very hostile to party litigants.”
One direct quote from the report, depicts a claimant, who was forced to become a party litigant : “I keep fighting cases, and they keep coming at me, and now I have become ill. But they still keep coming at me. They threw me out onto the street, I couldn’t get my medication, I’ve got nothing, I was homeless, ill, sleeping in the car. Now I am appealing. But I can’t get a solicitor. They are just shutting me down…. My health has been damaged, they kill you off. It’s a proven fact. All of us have stress related problems after years and years of stress.”
The full story of the University of Manchester’s report on the Master Policy and its effects on clients, can be read here : Suicides, illness, broken families and ruined clients reveal true cost of Law Society’s Master Policy which ‘allows solicitors to sleep at night’
Some of the ways in which clients have been targeted by the Law Society of Scotland were revealed in an earlier article, documenting how Private Investigators & corrupt Police Officers have been used to intrude into client’s lives, featured here : HERE & HERE