Practice Management

Claims alert

The following three pie graphs illustrate the numbers of claims notified to us, arising out of work done in the various areas of legal practice. Graph A shows, inter alia that the most problematic areas in the past six years have been conveyancing, prescribed MVA's (RAF) and litigation errors. Graph B shows that by far the largest number of claims in the 2006 year were prescribed MVA (RAF) matters. Conveyancing and litigation matters followed quite far behind.

In the 2008 year (see graph C), the picture is looking very different! By far the largest number of claims arise from conveyancing instructions.

In previous bulletins, we have focussed, to a large extent, on MVA (RAF) matters, and to a lesser extent on conveyancing and litigation. In my new role as Risk Manager, I will be focussing on all these areas and especially on conveyancing in an attempt to highlight problems that occur regularly in these areas

We will be consulting widely with the relevant bodies and parties to try and understand the underlying causes and to alert practitioners to the pitfalls.

Currently, the bulk of the conveyancing claims being reported to us arise from attorneys having provided undertakings to bridging finance companies. All conveyancers please be warned. I suggest that you read (or re-read) our Hesma Strydom's article Undertakings on the topic in November's bulletin (4/2008). If you have not kept it, please find it on our website at
Ann Bertelsmann
Risk Manager

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