Thursday 19th March 2020

President's Update

Dear Member

I have been asked to forward to the PLS Members the outcome of today's agreement by the conveyancing Law Panel in light of the coronavirus and their proposals regarding exchange and completions.  If you are involved with conveyancing please take time to read:

"The Law Panel have discussed the current circumstances surrounding the coronavirus. We have unanimously reached the conclusion that the best way forward to enable transactions to still proceed will be to effect a simultaneous exchange and completion wherever possible. This is of course subject to client agreement, but we have concluded this presents the least amount of risk to our clients.

Dates would be agreed in the usual way as if we were going to exchange with mortgage monies/redemption figures being ordered and clients providing funds and signed documents. However, we would not actually exchange, but would instead wait for the completion date and then exchange and complete simultaneously.

The reason for this is that it is the lesser of two evils. If we exchange one week and then fix completion for the following week and the risk is that if for some reason we cannot complete due to the coronavirus, the buyers in the chain lose their deposits. If we do a simultaneous the risk is that the clients lose the money paid to their removal companies and their earnings for a day they could be at work. The loss from a simultaneous is considerably less that losing a 10% deposit.

A simultaneous does create stress and uncertainty, but the Law Panel are committed to working together to try and get as many matters through as we can in these difficult times.

The firms in agreement with this strategy are Bright, GA, T & J, Wolferstans, Nash, Woollacombe Yonge, Chartahouse & Gard & Co. Hopefully, other firms will follow our lead."

Should you have any queries please contact either Julie Milton at Bright  Solicitors - or David Wallis at GA Solicitors -

James Walsh
President of the Plymouth Law Society
Telephone: 01752 203536

< Return to news list