Property Lawyers Group Responds to the Law Society’s Postponement of TA6 Form

The Property Lawyers Action Group (PLAG) responds to last Friday’s announcement by the Law Society regarding the ‘postponement’ of its controversial Fifth edition of the ‘TA6’ (Announcement).

The TA6 is based on the National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agency Team’s guidance on Material Information, which is not legally binding on estate agents (MI).

PLAG’S Reaction

PLAG considers the Announcement disappointing for several reasons.

In particular:

• How could the Law Society’s approach to MI be predicated on ‘pragmatism’ when its implementation would have far-reaching civil and criminal legal consequences for both the public and solicitors?

• The Law Society has not appreciated the full extent of members’ anger over the lack of transparency concerning the adoption by the Law Society of MI.

• Angry members expected therefore the TA6 to be withdrawn, not merely ‘postponed’.

• PLAG considers it curious that the LS should suggest in the Announcement that:
‘until 15 January 2025 members will be compliant with the CQS if they use either TA6 (4th edition, second revision) (2020) or if they use the new TA6’ Property Information Form (5th edition) (2024), Jeffery said’

This would imply the Law Society has already made up its mind.

• PLAG considers the Law Society’s Announcement unfortunately to be condescending, especially as one solicitor has remarked for instance, that he felt like his own representative body, had declared war on its own members.

What Next

At the centre of the controversy regarding the TA6 is the need for transparency, so the Law Society’s actions become much more pellucid. Equally, there needs to be a real debate with its members, regarding their relationship with law tech in 2024.

PLAG is carefully considering its next steps concerning the Special General Meeting. However, Stephen Larcombe, Chair of PLAG remarks “that bearing in mind the numerous objections sent to the Law Society concerning the TA6 and the MI policy that underpins it, by PLAG, various local law societies and members individually, it is a pity that the Law Society left PLAG with little choice but to initiate the arrangements for an SGM.

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