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New responsibilities for managers and employees under SAR

The Legal Services Act 2007 introduces wide reaching changes to the structure and regulation of legal practices.

Two of the changes, a new concept called a Legal Disciplinary Practice (LDP) and firm-based regulation, both with effect from 31 March 2009, mean that all lawyers and staff in law firms might need to pay closer attention to The Solicitors’ Accounts Rules 1998 (SAR), even if they, personally do not have any contact with client money.

An LDP creates an opportunity for non lawyer managers and other types of lawyers to become owners in law firms along with solicitors.  Whilst the accountants who have become non lawyer managers might be expected to be aware of the SAR, there will be others in the firm who might not be so aware of their new duties and responsibilities.