Legal Business Blogs

‘Change of direction’: Bevan Brittan refuses to retender for SRA legal panel

LB100 firm Bevan Brittan has declared it will not retender for the Solicitor Regulation Authority’s legal panel, after reviewing the level of investment needed to service the regulatory body.

The firm said today (1 December) it does not want to be considered in the next selection round, adding that its main partner for SRA work has left the firm for Kingsley Napley.

Bevan Brittan’s practice advising the SRA was previously one of its key practices with the firm acting for the SRA during the administration of Halliwells.

Bevan Brittan regulatory partner Iain Miller was the key relationship partner, however the firm stated he was set to leave the firm. The firm had previously turned down some less profitable work for the SRA, choosing only to advise on complex SRA intervention work.

The Bristol headquartered firm was previously appointed to the firm’s litigation panel in 2010 and 2013. The SRA is currently in the process of reviewing its legal panel after the current roster expired on 30 June.

The current litigation panel of six firms includes Kingsley Napley, Simmons & Simmons, Capsticks, Devonshires, Russell-Cooke and Bevan Brittan.

Managing partner Duncan Weir said: ‘This year, Bevan Brittan has been successfully extending its range of services and growing its client base into new business sectors and geographies.

‘In preparation for the SRA re-tender, we reviewed the continuing level of investment required to deliver this aspect of our legal regulatory work and decided not to re-tender for the SRA panel work. This was not an easy decision because the SRA has been a valued client for a number of years.

‘Iain Miller, who has been our lead partner on this work, has now opted for a change of direction, and will be leaving the firm. We thank Iain for his service and time at Bevan Brittan and we wish him every success in the future.’

The SRA’s future is currently under review, with proposals to make the regulator fully independent from the Law Society under review by the Ministry of Justice.

An SRA spokesperson said: ‘We are currently in the middle of a competitive process to appoint a new panel. We were disappointed that Bevan Brittan did not retender, but are pleased that we have had strong interest from a range of firms.’

He added: ‘We are confident that the process will deliver a result that gives us excellent legal support, while also achieving value for money.’