Law Society Legal News Summary 12 January 2022


Extension of remote witnessing for wills 

The government has announced that vulnerable people across England and Wales will continue to be able to have their wills witnessed remotely until 2024, citing Law Society research that 14% of legal professionals who helped make wills since 2020 did so via video. 

This was covered by the Daily Telegraph (print), the IndependentLondon News TodayEast Anglian Times (print), Legal FuturesEminetra, the GazetteMSN UKNewchainToday's Wills & Probate, the Press & Journal and John O'Groat Journal. 

President of the Law Society of England and Wales I. Stephanie Boyce said: "Solicitors have bent over backwards to ensure their clients have been able to make valid wills despite the restrictions during the pandemic. Those who have used video witnessing have told the Law Society it has been a useful option to have – to help vulnerable people set their affairs in order when making a will in the presence of witnesses is not possible." 

Read our press release


Family Law
 

Mena Ruparel, chair of our family law committee, spoke to Julie Skentelbery on BBC Radio Cornwall (from 46:40) yesterday about family law, and in particular, divorce.
 

Government announces cladding plans 

Property Wire and Inside Conveyancing report on our response to the government announcement which suggests putting more of the cost of fixing cladding on to developers. 

I. Stephanie Boyce said "We have been raising concerns for some time now that leaseholders, who live in unsafe buildings through no fault of their own, are bearing the brunt of the costs of cladding remediation. We argued that the government should remove the block height restriction on eligibility for financial support available to leaseholders for cladding remediation and are pleased to see this step now being taken for 11-18 metre buildings." 

Read our press release here

Crypto

The Gazette reports that every lawyer will require familiarity with crypto according to the master of the rolls. 

I. Stephanie Boyce said: "Distributed ledger technology, smart legal contracts and cryptoassets will likely form the infrastructure of the digital economy and basis for future transactions, which lawyers will continue to advise on."
 

Also worth a read: 

  • Boris in hot water over Downing Street parties – BBC and Guardian
  • Court battle between SRA and solicitor continues – Gazette
  • Boris Johnson is revealing who he really is – New York Times
  • High energy bills to last two years, warns British Gas owner – BBC
  • Copycats monetise Wordle – Guardian  

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