Hear from the SRA how the pandemic has impacted on compliance within law firms, what practical problems remote working has highlighted, and the best solutions the SRA have seen that will help firms move forward and adapt to what is expected to be a more hybrid working environment in the future.
With law firm mergers on the rise, this Q&A session with Knights will look at the key drivers that influence the valuing of a law firm from the acquirer’s perspective.
SRA Accounts Rules
Get yourself fully updated on any changes; developments in SRA and ICAEW guidance; testing and reporting issues for the Reporting Accountant; as well as any common problems and breaches.
Learn how to support staff and partners to build their mental resilience and maintain wellbeing as we gradually return to the ‘new normal’.
Find out about the rapid increase in the use of technology in firms and the latest developments.
Please note that the programme is subject to change.
- Chairman's welcome
- How has Covid-19 impacted on compliance within firms, and lessons learned for the future?
- M&A in legal services businesses - value drivers, deals done and prices paid
- Disbursement -v- Recharge’
- Life after lockdown; The challenges and opportunities
- Financing and bank relationships for law firms post Covid
- Delivering a return from investments in IT and technology
- Turning the tide: how to take a data driven approach to employee well-being
- SRA Accounts Rules Update
- Chairman's closing remarks
- Close of event
Well done! An excellent virtual conference. Well organised, the separate zoom links was great, very easy for delegates to register and attend.
Excellent and very helpful event.
Very interesting bitesize programmes with a wide variety of content and engaging speakers.
I thought that the virtual format actually worked really well, particularly as I could easily choose the sessions which most interested me and get on with month-end reporting in between!
Julian Bryan has been Managing Director of Quill since 2012. Julian brings a passion for the legal industry as well as 36 years of software experience, strength of commercial thinking, a successful track record of managing change and executing strategy, and the ability to motivate a diverse organisation. Julian’s ultimate goal is for Quill to gain widespread recognition as an ethical, responsible provider of transformative, future proofed software and outsourced services to the legal sector.
Sean has been with the SRA and previously The Law Society for over 20 years. His Forensic Investigation teams conduct on-site investigations with a focus on compliance with the Standards and Regulations including the Accounts Rules. The Intelligence team liaises with other regulators, law enforcement and various government departments. Sean specialises in the Accounts Rules, Anti-money laundering and financial stability. As a Chartered Accountant, Sean has previously worked with EY and PKF.
Andy has worked closely with law firms since he joined Hazlewoods LLP as a trainee back in 1997, and is one of three partners in Hazlewoods Legal Team. The team of 35 sector specialists works with around 170 law firms on a retained basis, and many more each year on projects such as structure changes, mergers and acquisitions, benchmarking, valuations and succession planning. Andy writes and produces the Law Society’s LMS Financial Benchmarking Survey and is the current Chair of the ICAEW Solicitors Group. He is also a former director of the Institute of Legal Finance and Management.
Alex Hutchinson, a Freelance IT Consultant, will highlight some of the main reasons law firms (and other Professional Services businesses) feel they never realise the expected returns on any investments in IT and Tech, but they certainly increase their costs! He will then provide some insight on to early key elements of running a successful IT / Technology project to ensure focus on the right areas and includes key components to ensure project success, user adoption and a clear R.O.I.
James is Client Services Director at Knights plc, the listed UK mid-market professional services business. Prior to this role, James worked as an M&A lawyer in regional, national and global law firms both in the UK and overseas. Having joined Manchester independent law firm Turner Parkinson in 2011 and led its sale to Knights plc in 2018, James has worked on a number of Knights’ acquisitions since its IPO, most recently those in Leeds and Sheffield. He has been one of North West England’s top ranked deals lawyers for the last 15 years, having advised on some of the region’s best-known deals across a wide variety of business sectors.
Michael Stevenson qualified as a chartered accountant with Arthur Andersen. Since 2009, Michael has been instrumental in the development and growth of Iceberg, the business that lends money to UK law firms and their clients. He is currently Joint Managing Director of the Iceberg business, which since 2017 has been part of Paragon Bank plc, the Footsie 250 challenger bank, based in Solihull. Iceberg lends in excess of £100 million per annum to UK law firms, hence providing the sector with a very significant level of PII loans, tax loans and other working capital loans.
Janet joined PKF Francis Clark as part of the firm’s specialist legal team in 2018 having been an owner in Taylor Mowbray LLP for over 12 years. Prior to that she spent over 10 years with another top 20 accounting firm heading up their specialist solicitors’ group. A highly experienced presenter Janet provides relevant and practical training on a number of financial issues for lawyers. Over the last 18 years she has regularly presented training on the SRA Accounts Rules to a wide range of accounting and law firms through in-house and public seminars. Janet is the current Subject Matter Expert for the ICAEW’s Solicitors Community Advisory Group.
Rachel began her career in HR. She decided to retrain and specialised in mental health qualifying as a mental health therapist in the NHS. She now runs a private practice in the North West specialising in psychological trauma and works for a variety of EAPs as well as running mental health and wellbeing workshops in both the public and private sectors. Rachel's corporate clients describe her style as "user friendly and pragmatic". Rachel practices mindfulness and compassionate mind therapy personally to maintain emotional resilience as well as running a charity that rescues St Bernards and provides pet therapy services to vulnerable people.
Darren has been a member of the ILFM since 2002. During that time, Darren has been subject to many external audits including SRA, VAT, PAYE and has successfully defended many ILFM members during VAT inspections. Darren is also the author and trainer of the ILFM’s VAT for Legal Accounting workshop which offers guidance and practical advice about key aspects of VAT compliance, including the treatment of disbursements and recharges. Darren is also co-author and trainer for ILFM SRA Accounts Rules workshop and has recently co-written “VAT for Legal Professionals”, a publication about VAT and the practicalities within legal practice.
Gareth joined CABA in November 2019 and works in the relationship team at CABA. Gareth engages with firms/businesses and the institute, delivering presentations and raising awareness of how CABA can support members. Being a previous actor, communication and building relationships is a natural part of who he is. Prior to working for CABA, Gareth’s experience has been in B2C and B2B sales, Management and Performing Arts.
Jonathan is a Forensic Investigation Team Manager at the SRA. His Team investigate a range of regulatory issues including compliance with the Accounts Rules and other conduct issues. Solicitors can be targeted as professional enablers in dubious activities. This continues to be a risk to the profession, as does the largely uncertain impact of the Pandemic. Prior to the SRA Jonathan worked as a finance director. Combined with his accounting background, gives Jonathan a useful insight into the business challenges faced by law firms.
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