Licensed conveyancers and solicitors are obligated to prioritise your best interests. Serving both parties in a transaction blurs the lines of representation, potentially leading to conflicts of interest and inadequate disclosure in contractual matters.
Conflict of interest
A property solicitor or conveyancer may face a conflict of interest when representing both the buyer and the seller. Each party has different interests and objectives in the transaction, and it can be challenging for one solicitor to advocate effectively for both sides.
It’s crucial for both the buyer and seller to receive independent legal advice. When you use the same conveyancer as the seller, a solicitor representing both parties might not be able to provide completely unbiased advice, as what benefits one party may not necessarily benefit the other.
Learn more about the independent legal advice we provide.
Negotiation and representation
During negotiations, issues might arise where the interests of the buyer and seller diverge significantly. In such situations, each party needs their own representative to negotiate on their behalf.
Confidentiality of information
Having separate property solicitors ensures that confidential information shared by each party will remain private. This confidentiality can be compromised if both parties share the same solicitor.
Legal practitioners are bound by ethical guidelines and professional standards that may restrict them from representing both parties in a property transaction due to the potential for conflict of interest.
Separate representation ensures that both parties are adequately protected and informed, which aligns with consumer protection laws and practices.
If cost is a concern, it’s better to seek a more affordable solicitor than to compromise on independent representation and use the same conveyancer as other party.
In some very straightforward transactions, like a transfer between family members, using the same solicitor might be more acceptable, but even in these cases, the potential risks and limitations should be carefully considered. It’s always advisable to seek independent legal advice tailored to your specific circumstances.
Contact us to find out more about conflict of interest if you are buying or purchasing a property and using the same conveyancer as the seller.
Can I use the same solicitor as my buyer?
The same recommendations apply when considering using the same solicitor as party looking to purchase your property.
If any disputes or negotiations arise, having separate legal representation ensures that your interests are vigorously represented. This is particularly important in negotiations over terms, price, or conditions in the contract.
Contact us to find out more about conflict of interest if you are selling a property and are considering using the same conveyancer as the buyer.