Setting up your own solicitors in Wirral practice is something that many lawyers dream about. However, there are a number of regulations that you need to know about before you start. You will also need to consider the additional overhead expenses that come with running your own business.
Setting Up The Practice
When you look at setting up a solicitors practice you need to know about the SRA regulations. Under these regulations a business must become recognized, a non-ABS business, or licensed, an ABS business. The authorisation you require must be received from the relevant authority before you start working.
However, it is possible to make all of the arrangements for your business before you receive the authorisation. This means that you can acquire premises, set up your computer systems and look at marketing, but you will not be able to offer any services. When doing this you will need to consider the length of time it will take to get the authorization from the SRA.
The SRA looks to make a decision on any application in 12 to 16 weeks. This time frame will only start once they have received the complete and correct application forms as well as the application fee. It is possible to speed up the application by streamlining the declarations of Compliance Offers for Legal Practice.
When setting up a practice one of the managers will need to be qualified to supervise and if you are starting as a sole practitioner then you will need to be qualified to supervise. To qualify you will need to be entitled to practice as a lawyer for at least 36 months of the last 10 years, have completed a 12-hour management skills course and you will need to have a practicing address within England and Wales.
What Type Of Practice Is Being Started
There are 3 types of practice that are regulated by the SRA and you will need to start one of these to practice in England and Wales. The type of practice that you choose will depend on who you want to be involved in the practice and how it will be managed. The 3 types of practices that you can choose from are recognized bodies, recognized sole practitioners and licensed bodies.
The recognized bodies will be firms where all of the managers and interest holders are lawyers. Licensed bodies will have non-lawyer interests which make up at least 10% of the firm. This could be a manager that is not a lawyer or an outside investor who is not a lawyer.
Have A Business Plan
Once you have determined what type of firm you are going to have, you need to look at a business plan. All new businesses will need to have a business plan because the SRA requires this for the authorization process. You will also need to provide the business plan to your insurers for them to determine if your business is too high-risk for them to insure.