Conveyancing Best Practices: Reducing the Risk of Negligence

Transferring property ownership from one person to another is a complex and demanding process. Such legal processes require great precision and attention to detail, making the role of a conveyancer that much more pressured.

The consequences of mistakes, errors and negligence in conveyancing can have wide-reaching impacts on your business and professional reputation and inflict financial loss or loss of chance on members of the public. Not only can you risk losing business, but you may be liable for conveyancing negligence claims from discontented clients.

By utilising best practices, you can minimize the risk of negligence and ensure smooth and compliant property transactions. Below we outline some of these best practices to bolster your operations.

Establishing a strong risk management protocol

Managing the levels of risk throughout the conveyancing process is key to reducing the chances of unfavourable outcomes. This includes understanding and evaluating red flags and identifying particularities in each case to be able to mitigate the risks.

Any significant known risks should be raised in initial client consultations, but keeping logs of issues that arise and ongoing risk factors should help to oversee the process more effectively. Of course, professional indemnity insurance is a must to protect your operation legally and financially in the event of a claim.

Promoting ongoing education and training

Legal landscapes and property markets are forever evolving, and this means that training for professionals should follow suit. Changes to the Conveyancing Quality Scheme (CQS) are important to note because these dictate the expectations of your service.

Recent changes to the CQS have been around data protection and the information you’re required to give clients. Following these protocols is key to protecting your business and your clients.

Prioritising effective communication and collaboration

Communication is by far the most important feature of the conveyancing process. It’s needed between you and your clients, and among other parties involved such as lenders, estate agents and solicitors.

Open and concise communication should help to reduce the risk of errors and misunderstandings, which everyone will surely want to avoid. Managing expectations is crucial with so many moving parts, which can be done with appropriate communication with stakeholders.

Conducting comprehensive due diligence

Buyers need to conduct research into potential dealbreakers and liabilities when buying a property, and it’s your duty as their conveyancer to oversee due diligence steps on their behalf.

Doing so comprehensively should reduce the risk of issues and faults down the line that can potentially disrupt proceedings and increase the risk of a negligence claim against your business.

Working in line with best practices is the best approach to reduce your risk as a conveyancer and protect yourself against negligence claims. Otherwise, you could suffer lost business and reputational damage.