Three-year strategy focuses on high standards and choice for public and solicitors
The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has today set out its new three-year strategy, affirming its focus on high professional standards set in the public interest.
For the first time, the SRA is consulting on its new Corporate Strategy. It wants to hear views on its proposed five strategic aims for 2017 to 2020. They are that the SRA will:
1. Set and apply consistently high professional standards for the individuals and firms it regulates and make sure they are appropriate to meet the challenges of today and the future.
2. Make sure its regulatory requirements are proportionate, providing solicitors and firms the flexibility to innovate and better meet the needs of members of the public and businesses, while maintaining appropriate levels of public protection.
3. Increase the availability of relevant and timely information to help people make informed choices in the legal services market.
4. Make sure that its regulatory arrangements work as effectively as possible for the public, businesses, solicitors and firms in the context of constitutional developments within the UK and any new relationship with the EU.
5. Work better together and with others to improve its overall effectiveness, its responsiveness and the delivery of its regulatory functions.
Paul Philip, SRA Chief Executive, said: “I am pleased that we have made real progress in the last three years, improving our customer service, cutting bureaucracy and taking forward key reforms. We have done this while keeping our costs down.
“Looking ahead, we want to do more to create a diverse, open and modern legal market. A market that provides accessible, affordable services and allows solicitors and law firms to thrive. We are keen to hear your views on whether our strategy focuses on the right things to make that happen.”
The consultation comes in the same week as the SRA has announced improvements in its operational performance. For instance, in the last year, the average time taken to authorise a firm has reduced by around 35 percent to an average of 24 days. The time taken to assess and investigate new complaints has dropped by 33 percent, over three years, to an average of 80 days.
Running until 21 September, the consultation and proposed strategy are available to view at: http://www.sra.org.uk/sra/consultations.page
An update on the SRA’s operational performance is available to view at: http://www.sra.org.uk/sra/how-we-work/board/public-meetings/archive/meeting-archive.page