Law to benefit lawyers, by lawyers, in the image of lawyers

From: John Wilson, Wilsons Solicitors, New Road Side, Horsforth, Leeds.

I HAVE been campaigning against the criminal element in my profession for many years, and your continued reporting of the scandal of the miners’ claims over the years does you great credit (Yorkshire Post, January 2).

But still concentrating on the law firm wrongdoers tends to obscure the part played in this scandal by those who would have you believe that their motivation is to regulate in the public interest.

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The lawyers concerned point out, quite correctly, that when they helped themselves to such handsome rewards they were only operating the scheme approved at the time by the supposedly independent regulators.

That, of course, is the same defence as the one used by the MPs caught with their hands in the till. Some of them went to jail. No lawyer has yet got anywhere near that, and probably never will.

Any such prosecution would expose the ineptitude and dissimulation of the regulators, and we cannot have that can we?

As regulators you keep quoting the so-called “Solicitors Regulation Authority” (SRA).

The SRA calls itself an independent regulator, but in fact it is neither. It is simply the latest re-branding of the Law Society’s PR effort, and the Law Society is effectively the legal profession’s trade union. So please do not be taken in by the wolf in sheep’s clothing.

The fact is that my profession has no independent regulation at all, and never has had.

As a result our law continues to be made by the lawyers in the image of the lawyers and for the benefit of the lawyers. That’s nice if you’re a lawyer, and the miners scandal shows that some of them want jam on it. But it is profoundly wrong for everyone else.

The miners’ scandal is an example, but only an example, of this cancer. Let’s have more focus on the disease rather than the symptoms.

From: Barry Geldard, Glen View, Hebden Bridge, Halifax.

I REFER to your lead article re the miners’ payouts and law firms pocketing millions (Yorkshire Post, January 2).

In Shakespeare’s Henry VI, Jack Cade, the rebel leader proclaims his right to the English Throne and a supporter, Dick the Butcher states “First thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers”.

A harsh remedy. But perhaps the then and current situation is best summed up by a question in the same bard’s Romeo and Juliet “…O’er lawyers’ fingers who straight dream on fees”.

Nothing changes.