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Ready to buy a new home? Failing to check that a lawyer is on the Cumberland BS list of approved solicitors can put your transaction at risk of delay or failure.

Find an Approved Solicitor on the Cumberland Building Society Conveyancing Panel

Common questions asked concerning the Cumberland Building Society Conveyancing Panel

My husband and I are first time buyers. Within the 48 hours our conveyancer has forwarded the sale agreement to sign with a detailed report with a view to exchanging next week. Cumberland Building Society have this morning contacted us to inform me that they have now hit a problem as our solicitor is not on their approved list of lawyers. Please explain?
When purchasing a property with the benefit of a mortgage it is usual for the purchaser's solicitors to also act for the purchaser's lender.

In order to act for a bank or building society a law firm has to be on that lender's conveyancing panel. An application has to be made by the law firm to the lender to become a member of the lender's panel and there are increasingly strict criteria which the firm has to satisfy and indeed some lenders now require their panel members to be part of the Law Society’s Conveyancing Accreditation Scheme. Your property lawyers should contact Cumberland Building Society and see if they can apply for membership of the Cumberland Building Society conveyancing panel, but if that is not viable Cumberland Building Society will instruct their own lawyers to represent them. You don't have to instruct a firm on the Cumberland Building Society conveyancing panel and you may continue to use your own solicitors, in which case it will likely add costs, and it may delay matters as you have another set of people involved.

My conveyancer has uncovered an inconsistency when comparing the surveyor’s assumptions in Cumberland Building Society’s home valuation report and what is in the conveyancing documents. My solicitor says that as he is on the Cumberland Building Society conveyancing panel he must check that the bank is happy with this discrepancy and is still content to lend. Is my solicitor’s approach right?
A precondition to being on the Cumberland Building Society approved panel is to comply with the CML Handbook requirements (last updated for this lender on Cumberland Building Society) which do require that your lawyer disclose any incorrect assumptions in the lender’s valuation report and the legal papers. Should you refuse to allow your lawyer to make the appropriate notification then your lawyer will have no choice but to discontinue acting for you.
Are the lawyers identified as being on the Cumberland Building Society conveyancing panel, together with their details provided by Cumberland Building Society?
The firms themselves provide us confirmation that they are on the Cumberland Building Society conveyancing panel as opposed to being supplied with a list from Cumberland Building Society directly.
Please explain the implications if my solicitor is expelled from the Cumberland Building Society Conveyancing panel before the moving date as agreed at exchange of contracts?
The first thing to point out is that, this is a very rare occurrence. In most cases even where a law firm is removed off of a panel the lender would allow the completion to go ahead as the lender would appreciate the difficulties that they would place you in if you have ti instruct a new solicitor days before completion. In a worst case scenario where the lender insists that you instruct a new firm then it is possible for a very good lawyer to expedite the conveyancing albeit that you may pay a significant premium for this. The analogous situation is where a buyer instructs a lawyer, exchanges contracts and the law firm is shut down by the regulator such as the SRA. Again, in this situation you can find lawyers who can troubleshoot their way to bring the conveyancing to a satisfactory conclusion - albeit for a fee.
Is it the case that all conveyancing solicitors on the Cumberland Building Society conveyancing panel work on a no sale no fee basis?
There is generally no requirements by lenders for their firms to operate on a no-sale-no-fee basis. There a small number of lenders who operate a very restricted conveyancing panel managed by a third party company (often termed in the industry as a ‘gatekeeper’). That third party may impose certain conditions such as non-sale-no fee on the panel firms. If you require this as a condition of your conveyancing then you should check with the conveyancing firm that this is part of their service
I had instructed online solicitors based in Birmingham who are on the Cumberland Building Society solicitor panel. They have just invoiced me a separate fee of £135 for dealing with the Cumberland Building Society mortgage. Is this an additional conveyancing fee set by Cumberland Building Society?
Unfortunately, as long as it is in their Terms and Conditions or Quote then yes your solicitors can charge a fee for this. This fee is not set by Cumberland Building Society but by your lawyers. Some firms on the Cumberland Building Society will charge an ‘acting for lender’ fee and others do not.
We have a mortgage agreed in principle with Cumberland Building Society. Solicitors have been instructed? How long does it take for Cumberland Building Society to send the offer to our conveyancer
There is no definitive answer here. Have Cumberland Building Society done the survey? Have you advised Cumberland Building Society as your lawyers details and checked that your lawyer is on the Cumberland Building Society conveyancing panel? It is not unusual for a mortgage offer to take a month to come through