Concerns raised by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) regarding price transparency in the legal services market have been well-received by the Legal Services Board (LSB), which says that it will take action to ensure that there is better information available to consumers of such services.
The news follows previous research published by the CMA in December 2016, which found that there was not enough information available to consumers regarding to costs of common legal services such as conveyancing and the drafting of Wills.
At the time, Rachel Merelie, Acting Executive Director for Markets and Mergers, said: “You might not need a lawyer very often but when you do it will often be at a crucial point in your life – whether that’s buying a property, resolving a dispute or getting expert advice on financial and employment matters. So the transparency, affordability and accessibility shortcomings we have identified are a real concern.”
Since the report was published, the CMA has called on legal services providers to display wider information on their fees and associated costs.
The CMA has also called for the development of comparison sites in order to allow customers to compare separate providers in one place.
Such recommendations have been well-received by the Legal Services Board (LSB), which has said that many of the conclusions reached by the CMA are “in line with the LSB’s own”.
Neil Buckley, LSB chief executive, said: “The LSB has an important oversight role in monitoring, engaging with and reporting publicly on the work of the regulators to improve market transparency.
“We are encouraged by the collective goodwill and early progress made by the regulators since the report was published.
“The approach we are taking to deliver the CMA’s recommendations reflects this good start and we are keen to see this continue.
“We are pleased to be able to play our part in this vital work to make the sector work better for consumers,” he said.