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Skip to 0 minutes and 8 seconds SPEAKER 1: Sometimes the pace of life catches us out. Events like buying a house, sealing a business deal, or getting a divorce. That’s when we need the help of a solicitor.

Skip to 0 minutes and 22 seconds SPEAKER 2: Solicitors are very important to the entire nation. We rely on them. They’re the one who sort our problems out. They know better than we do.

Skip to 0 minutes and 33 seconds SPEAKER 1: Now for the first time, the public will get the chance to say what should happen when solicitors fall short of expectations. It’s part of a campaign called A Question of Trust. It’s been organized by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and launched at the Baltic in Gateshead.

Skip to 0 minutes and 50 seconds PAUL PHILIP: I think the public have a key role to play. I think they can give us the feedback on what they think about the types of issues that we face on a day-to-day and dealing with regulating solicitors, how seriously should we take them. Are those serious issues? Are those issues that actually we should just let go of and actually put on with? What I want is a proper mandate from the public and the profession.

Skip to 1 minute and 12 seconds SPEAKER 1: So the public will be given several scenarios and asked how serious they judge them to be.

Skip to 1 minute and 20 seconds SPEAKER 3: Drink Driving to me is definitely a no-no.

Skip to 1 minute and 26 seconds SPEAKER 1: Should they lose their job?

Skip to 1 minute and 28 seconds SPEAKER 3: Yes. A lot of other people would lose their job for it.

Skip to 1 minute and 30 seconds SPEAKER 4: Well, ordinary people like the rest of us, and I wouldn’t go particularly hard on that.

Skip to 1 minute and 39 seconds SPEAKER 5: Yes, I think there should be severe disciplinary action if he doesn’t listen to your needs and your complaints, yes.

Skip to 1 minute and 49 seconds SPEAKER 6: Unacceptable. You’ve got to put the client first. Everything is all about the client and the client’s interest. You’ve got to put whatever they think aside and do whatever the client asks them to.

Skip to 2 minutes and 1 second SPEAKER 1: Do you think they should be reprimanded or even lose their job?

Skip to 2 minutes and 5 seconds SPEAKER 7: Oh. Losing their job. I won’t say that. But they should be reminded that clients rely on solicitors, and solicitors should do their job properly.

Skip to 2 minutes and 21 seconds SPEAKER 8: Oh, no. That’s not good. And if things I should be confidential and only read in a private place, where there’s only her or the client as well can see them.

Skip to 2 minutes and 28 seconds SPEAKER 9: A severe slap on the wrist. But if it carries on, he should be disciplined. But he shouldn’t do it.

Skip to 2 minutes and 34 seconds SPEAKER 10: They should know better in their responsible jobs.

Skip to 2 minutes and 37 seconds SPEAKER 1: The Solicitors Regulation Authority monitors 167,000 solicitors in England and Wales. It receives around 1,000 complaints a month. Solicitors like Chris Hugill at Ward Hadaway in Newcastle will also get the chance to have their say as part of the SRA’s campaign.

Skip to 2 minutes and 58 seconds CHRIS HUGILL: I think the SRA should ask, are we still professionals? I think they should ask, if we are professionals, what does that mean? Do we have a sense of– are there common values which are peculiar to solicitors? Are some of those values and standards now, have they become dated?

Skip to 3 minutes and 26 seconds Does the amount of regulation reflect the current situation?

Skip to 3 minutes and 34 seconds SPEAKER 1: A1 Flue Systems in Ollerton in north Nottinghamshire works closely with its solicitor. The director of the firm says trust is at the heart of a good working relationship.

Skip to 3 minutes and 45 seconds TJ DUNCAN-MOIR: Historically I think there have been [INAUDIBLE] stuffy. You were quite scared of them. You did what they were saying. What we found personally is now they’re bringing the younger people on board. They’re becoming more personable and getting more involved in the business and being more businese-minded as opposed to just doing what they do.

Skip to 4 minutes and 3 seconds SPEAKER 1: The launch at the Baltic in Gateshead is one of 28 events across England and Wales. The SRA says it’s the public’s views that matter the most because, as the old saying goes, trust is hard won and easily lost.

What values and standards do we expect solicitors to meet?

Your task – watch the ‘Question of Trust’ campaign video produced by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. Having watched the video, reflect on whether you agree with the views of the people in the video and share your thoughts with other learners in the comments area.

In July 2015, the Solicitors Regulation Authority launched a ‘Question of Trust’ campaign. This campaign saw 5,400 members of the public and profession share their views on what values and standards they expect solicitors to meet. The campaign used scenarios based on real-life cases so that people could say what issues they saw as minor and those, by contrast, they saw as serious.

Remember, you can ‘like’ comments if you agree with what’s been said or if you have found something particularly interesting, or you can ‘reply’ to comments to initiate a conversation.

Don’t forget, if you want to see if anyone has replied to a comment you have made, just click the ‘replies’ icon along the top of the video window.

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This video is from the free online course:

Corporate Lawyers: Ethics, Regulation and Purpose

University of Birmingham