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propertylawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 288
Experience:  Property Solicitor with expertise in commercial and residential property transactions.
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Dear Sirs, I am buying a property and have just met the

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Dear Sirs, I am buying a property and have just met the sellers regarding a document sent by my solicitors to their solicitors. I immediately noted that the vendors solicitors had "blanked out" the date on which it was written and presumably sent by my solicitor, on the copy that they enclosed to the vendors. Is this in breach of professional practice/conduct?
Without going into more detail at this point I would add that the vendors require a quick sale due to terms of an endowment mortgage and had made this clear to their solicitors from the outset. Any delays in the process have caused extreme distress both to them and myself. I would very much appreciate your advice in this matter.
Many thanks Martin Jenkins.

What document was sent?

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
It was a letter from my solicitor to the vendors solicitor asking a number of relevant further questions regarding the sale of the property and requesting answers such that I would be in a position to sign contracts with full information and included things such as underpinning, wiring, original transfer documents, combined services, Fensa certificates, planning documents, Gas safe etc etc.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Further to the above, quick responses to letters are required in this case and it appears to me that the vendor's solicitor are trying to hide the fact that they have failed to forward this letter contemporaneously.

How long was the delay?

Have you discussed this with your solicitor?

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Not yet as it's the weekend and I only discovered this this afternoon. However, when the vendor phoned me on Thursday 17th very distressed I asked him what the date was on m,y solicitors letter as I thought this had been sent around 2 weeks ago. The vendor stated that my solicitors copy letter did not have a date on it which I thought was unlikely, but i have only seen the document myself today and immediately spotted that the date had been erased....not very "professionally". Previous delays on the vendors solicitor's side have caused me and the vendors a lot of distress so I wanted to try and alleviate this by seeing if this was actually "against the rules"
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
It is possible that it was only a weeks delay, but why blank out the date?

It is obvious why the date was erased, to hide the fact it has been sat on when the client needs the deal to complete quickly. A solicitor must act in their client's best interests and in compliance with a raft of regulations.

If the solicitor is aware of the urgency then responding slowly could give rise to a complaint against the solicitor and the firm.

The seller's solicitor should have received a letter (known as a client care letter, engagement letter etc) setting out the terms of business of the firm and a complaints procedure. That is the first option. The seller may want to formally complain now as it may have the desired effect of speeding the solicitor up. May not work if this is a small practice or one man band. Complaints can then be directed at the regulator (SRA). The regulator will then investigate.

Hope this helps. Do let me know if you have any questions or queries.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thank you for youTher answer which is quite expected but good to have an expert opinion. However, in your answer you say "The seller's solicitor should have received a letter.....". Should that read "The vendors should have received a letter...."?

Sorry it should have said 'the seller should have .......'

Vendor / seller are the same thing.

propertylawyer and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thank you for the correction. I will speak to my solicitor in the morning.