Solicitors Conference

Ideal for partners and senior managers with responsibility for a number of solicitor clients, our one-day conference will cover a wide range of practical issues.


Who should attend the conference

Mercia's Solicitors Conference is a must-attend event for any accountancy firms with solicitor clients.

Through this one-day virtual conference, you will get practical advice about all the latest changes and challenges currently facing the legal sector. Hear from the SRA and legal firms themselves on how you can add value to your clients.


Now available: Conferences On-Demand

Following this conference, a recording of the event will be available to purchase. This gives you the ability to catch up on technical updates at your convenience. If you've already registered for the live event, you'll now receive complimentary access to the recording.



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Full conference agenda

Richard Silver, Solicitors Regulation Authority

This session will provide an update on:

  • the minor amendments to the SRA Standards and Regulations
  • the consumer protection review
  • fee restrictions in claims management cases
  • any issues we are seeing on the ground.

Colin Taylor and Leigh Ferris, Howden Group

This talk will highlight the many similarities and differences between the risk and insurance placements for Accountants and Solicitors, including:

  • coverage
  • premium rates
  • key risks
  • insurer focus and concerns.

Arun Chauhan, Tenet Law

The session will look at the risk of fraud to the legal sector and for firms in terms of their risk of loss to fraud. We will review current fraud landscape in the UK, the scale of fraud, the evolving nature of corporate liability which captures law firms, the SRA’s expectations of law firms, stories in the sector, considering why people break the rules, organisational and people controls and how to assess your own risk and build good practice. 

Janet Taylor, Taylor Mowbray LLP

Your annual update - this annual review ensures partners and managers keep up to date and continue to develop their skills and understanding when carrying out SRA Accounts Rules assignments. The session will include:

  • SRA Accounts Rules changes over the last twelve months 
  • updates to the SRA’s Guidance covering aspects of the rules 
  • common problem areas and further developments on these topics. 

Jenny Staight, Hazlewoods

This session will cover how you, as accountants, can help your lawyer clients to gain a better understanding of profitability, with a focus on looking at the importance of time recording and other financial metrics.

Paul McCluskey, Gemstone legal

The costs of doing business continue to rise. More funding is unlikely to be the answer, therefore law firm leaders need to think of ways to generate sustainable income from the resources they currently have. This session is for accountancy practices that want to offer an added value service. By the end of the session, delegates will be armed with three critical messages that must be discussed at the next client interaction.

Conference speakers

Policy Associate Richard Silver joined the SRA’s regulatory policy team in 2014. He works across a number of policy areas, including immigration and asylum services, claims management activity and information transparency.

Colin is one of the most experienced insurance practitioners in the field of professional indemnity. His career spans over 30 years and he has represented a significant number of professional services firms in the UK. Colin was Head of Professions Risk Management in Willis’ FINEX team and more recently JLT/Marsh. During that time he has worked with many law firms both in the UK and Internationally

Colin leads the way in risk management training for law firms in England and Wales. During the last 20 years Colin has developed a number of risk management training modules for professional services firms and leads our risk management proposition for clients.

Colin was recently awarded Risk Management Champion of the Year at the CIR risk management awards 2022 directly for the work he has undertaken for law firms. He also holds the International Certificate in Risk Management (CIRM) from the Institute of Risk Management.

Leigh has over 30 years’ experience in the field of PII Broking. He is recognised by his peers and by clients alike as one of the UK’s leading specialist PI insurance practitioners.

Leigh is the head of Howden’s Accountancy Practice Group and is the Account Director for many of our larger clients in the accountancy sector. During his career, Leigh has worked closely with clients and the insurance market in the development of enhanced policy wordings for accountants and other professional services firms.

Leigh’s tenacious approach to obtaining the most competitively priced Insurance programmes on behalf of our clients and his in-depth technical knowledge of the PII coverage has given him the reputation as the ‘go-to broker’. Setting high standards in client care, his positive approach and innovative thinking are an asset to any professional service firm’s broking team.

Arun is a lawyer specialising in disputes and compliance issues arising from fraud and financial crime. In 2016 he founded disruptive law firm Tenet, the only niche law firm in its field outside of London. Tenet covers the spectrum of preventative action in the form of training, ethics, governance and policy advice to case investigation and guidance on recovery of loss from financial fraud. The award winning firm has been recognised for its innovation in legal services and won Boutique Law Firm of the Year at The Legal Business Awards 2022 and the client service award at the Reisman Awards hosted by Clio in the US in 2023.

An experienced solicitor for over 20 years, Arun is a Trustee Director for the Fraud Advisory Panel, a member of the Commercial Fraud Lawyers Association and a fellow of the International Compliance Association. Arun is a fraud specialist with a commercial mind and calm nature. He is a regular speaker and trainer on counter fraud issues as well as an expert for the BBC, providing advice to consumers on fraud risks, featuring on programmes such as Watchdog, Panorama, Rip Off Britain and BBC Radio. In 2023 Arun was recommended as Transformational Leader in the Business Desk Leadership awards and is a recognised thought leader and spokesman in his field and been featured on LBC radio, BBC News, Sky News and in publications such as The Times and The Telegraph. He has also provided evidence to a House of Lords Select Committee about the effectiveness of prosecution for fraud offences and the impact of digital fraud risk.

Janet Taylor

Janet spent over 10 years with a top 20 accounting firm heading up their specialist solicitors’ group. A highly experienced presenter with, Janet provides relevant and practical training on a number of financial issues for lawyers and accountants. Over the last 20 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. Clients have include several major international and national law firms as well as their reporting accountants. Janet is the Subject Matter Expert for the ICAEW’s Solicitors Advisory Group.

Jenny has been a part of the Hazlewoods Legal Team for 14 years, advising a portfolio of law firms on regulatory and compliance matters. She regularly presents at seminars and courses on the SRA Accounts Rules and other financial metrics affecting law firms. Jenny is also a director of the Institute of Legal Finance and Management, sits on their Executive Council and is their Financial Management and CILEX tutor.

Paul McCluskey

Paul McCuskey is the former UK Head of Professional Practices at Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Bank and has worked with law firms of various sizes and complexity across the UK and Northern Ireland. Having seen banks shift away from legal sector specialism, Paul set up Gemstone Legal to offer firms a trusted, independent approach to source finance and improve returns on client monies. Paul is also a Law Society approved Lexcel assessor and consultant and combines his experience to help legal firms to improve their approach to finance and operational risk management. Paul speaks and writes regularly on financial factors impacting the UK legal sector.

One Day Conference
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The on-demand recording is now available

Released on 13 May 2024 the recording will be available to view until 31 December 2024.