A solicitor was found guilty of professional misconduct for failures to carry out clients’ instructions.
Brian Travers, a partner at Falkirk’s Marshall Wilson solicitors since 2007, was banned from taking or executing any client instructions for a period of three years after the Scottish Solicitors Discipline Tribunal upheld the complaints made against him and has subsequently retired from legal practice.
The complaints included his failure to provide the Scottish Legal Aid Board with a client mandate form initially requested on November 9, 2010 and subsequent failures to respond to correspondence from the Law Society of Scotland.
This was said to have “amounted to a serious and reprehensible departure from the standard of conduct to be expected of a competent and reputable solicitor”.
Another complaint stated he sent correspondence dated May 29, 2012 to a complainer’s solicitor advising the final payment for a fee note of £352.50 must be made within 14 days or they intended to raise the appropriate court proceedings for the outstanding fee note – this was despite the complainer receiving a written confirmation on July 17, 2010 from Marshall Wilson Law Group the fine note for £352.50 had been sent in error and cancelled.
A former client of Mr Travers was fined £8500 back in 2009 because the solicitor failed to send in the man’s diesel receipts to the HMRC – despite being reminded to do it.
He then failed to apply for a recall of that complainer’s bankruptcy despite the complainer paying him £20,000 in May 2012.
During the hearing, the tribunal stated: “Solicitors have a duty to co-operate with the Law Society. Failure to do so obstructs the complainers in the performance of their statutory duty.
“This is prejudicial to the reputation of the profession and is likely to bring it into disrepute.”
Marshall Wilson made no comment on the case but did confirm Mr Travers has now retired from legal practice.