How TM can help with Outcome Focused Regulation (OFR)

Outcome Focused Regulation or OFR has now been with us since October 2011 and over the last three years law firms have adapted to and now operate effectively within the guidance of the new regime.

Here at TM we want to ensure our services match the high levels of practice expected since the introduction of Outcome Focused Regulation and so we have also been adapting and looking at how we develop our services to you.

Below are some of the issues and risk questions raised by Outcome Focused Regulation and how TM can help manage them.

1. Protection of client money & assets
Some large firms offer a wide range of different legal services with conveyancing departments supporting many clients. TM systems can:
• Provide a secure access and logon for every user
• Add and delete users as needed at the law firm
• Maintain an audit trail on cases to see who has done what

2. Proper standards of service for multiple locations
Firms who operate from more than one location may face issues around standardising what everybody does. TM systems can:
• Upload and use your firm’s search questions
• Order the same set of searches at the touch of a button if you regularly use the same searches
• Set up search preferences for you

3. Risk management principles
Compliance and the protection of client money and assets will always be a risk. Sound financial and risk management principles, combined with the the requirements from the SRA handbook will reduce this risk. TM systems can:
• Provide search alerts; coal, flood, HS2 etc.
• Provide search expiry warnings; don’t get caught out by an out of date K15 or 16 again!
• Provide compliance searches – Jet, AML and Lawyer Checker
• Have all your search results returned to a secure TM website

4. Act in the best interests of your client
Law firms can have very diverse customer bases and because of that it’s important that the right client gets the right documents. TM systems can help by:
• Providing unique client references to help with billing
• Making sure the correct search is ordered; residential or commercial
• Making sure the appropriate terms and conditions are issues; standard or enhanced

5. Client service standards
You need to provide the best service possible to your clients and TM systems can help by:
• Managing search turnaround times which will allow you to manage your clients’ expectations
• Providing accurate costings and quotes upfront
• Timely billing
• Providing you with a wide choice of searches and search providers.

Image courtesy of Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) (2011)

When TM review the functionality of their systems and services it’s done with the Ten Principles of OFR and the SRA Handbook firmly in mind. We help you to comply with your legal and regulatory obligations and the quality of our service, support and training will help you to provide a high standard of service to your customers which will help maintain your clients’ trust in you.

If you need further information or have any questions, please do get in touch.