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

Find an Approved Solicitor on the Hodge Life Conveyancing Panel

Q and A’s regarding the Hodge Life Conveyancing Panel

I am selling my apartment and the EA has just called to advise that the buyers are swapping conveyancer. The excuse is that Hodge Life will only deal with property lawyers on their conveyancing panel. Why would a major lender only deal with certain lawyers?
Lenders have always had an approved set of law firms they are willing to work with, but in the past few years big names such as Nationwide , have reviewed and reduced their conveyancing panel– in some cases removing conveyancing firms who have worked with them for decades.

Lenders point to the increase in fraud by way of justification for the cull – criteria have been tightened and a smaller panel should be easier to keep an eye on. No lender will say how many solicitors have been dropped, claiming the information is commercially sensitive, but the Law Society says it is hearing daily from firms that have been removed from panels, or have other concerns about them. Some do not even realise they have been dropped until contacted by a borrower who has instructed them as might be the situation in your buyer’s case. Your purchasers are unlikely to have any sway in the decision.

My solicitor is asking me for personal identification documents asserting that this forms part of his requirements as a conveyancer on the Hodge Life Solicitor panel. Is this right?
Due to Money Laundering Regulations your conveyancing lawyer is duty bound to confirm positively your identification when entering into a business relationship with you. It is a criminal offense if your lawyer not do this. If you do not provide ID early in the transaction the solicitor must refuse to act for you. It’s unlikely a lawyer will turn you away if you come to the first meeting without relevant ID but you will have to produce it at some point so you might as well bring it with you to the initial meeting so the lawyer can tick the ID verification box and start sorting out the conveyancing straight away. If you are getting a mortgage with Hodge Life your lawyer also has to check ID documents to satisfy Hodge Life
What tools are available to find a local solicitor on the Hodge Life conveyancing panel? I have a car and am prepared to travel up to 10 kilometers to meet the solicitor.
Feel free to make use of the find a conveyancing panel search on this website. Please choose the lender and your location and you will see a number of lawyer located nearest you. Alternatively you can type in the name of your proposed law firm and see if they are listed as being on the Hodge Life solicitor panel.
The lawyers that I recently instructed on my purchase in Newcastle has suddenly shut down. I chose them because I had to have a lawyer on the Hodge Life conveyancing panel and my family lawyer was not. I paid them £200 on account. What should be my next steps?
If you have an estate agent involved then let them know straight away so that they can let the sellers know that there may be a slight delay due to reasons beyond your control. Hopefully they will be sympathetic and urge their lawyer to send a new set of papers to your new solicitors. You should appoint new lawyers that are on the Hodge Life conveyancing panel and notify the lender. If you have paid over any money it will hopefully be held by the SRA as money in an intervened firm's bank accounts is transferred to the SRA. Then, the SRA or the intervention agent looks at the intervened firm's accounts to work out who the money belongs to. To claim your money you will need to contact the SRA. If the SRA cannot return money you are owed from the firm's bank accounts, or if they can only return part of the money, you can apply to the Compensation Fund for a grant. Your new lawyers may be able to help
I can not work out if my mortgage offer obliges me to make sure the lease term for the flat is extended prior to the completion date . I have telephoned Hodge Life on various occasions and was told they are content with the situation and they would lend. My solicitor - who is on the Hodge Life conveyancing panel- telephoned and was told not they would not lend in accordance with their CML Handbook minimum lease term requirements. Who do I believe?
Your lawyer has to follow the CML Handbook Part 2 requirements for Hodge Life. Unless your lawyer obtains specific confirmation in writing that Hodge Life will go ahead your lawyer has no choice but to refrain from exchanging contract and committing you to the purchase. We would suggest that you ask Hodge Life to contact your lawyer in writing confirming that they will accept the remaining number of years left on the lease.
My ex -wife’s name is on the Hodge Life mortgage of my property but not on the land registry. The apartment was transferred to me on our divorce many years ago by way of a sealed court order. Does my ex still have a say on the sale even though the land registry showing the property in my name alone? Will I be required to take her name of the Hodge Life mortgage in order to sell?
In terms of the Hodge Life mortgage, it is unusual that your ex-wife’s name remains on the mortgage but not on the title. It is conceivable that this is an oversight on the part of your conveyancers to ensure that her name was removed or even an administrative error on the part of Hodge Life in failing to update their data. In any event, it should cause difficulty providing her name no longer appears on the Land Registry title and you have a court order ordering that the property is transferred to you.
My brother and I are buying a house in Hendon. Conveyancing solicitors in Hendon will soon beretained. My colleaguesuggested that we enquire that the property lawyer in Hendon is on the Hodge Life panel. Surely I don't need to do this, do I?
Not all Hendon conveyancing solicitors are on the Hodge Life conveyancing panel. 7 people a month use our search tool to find a Hendon conveyancing firm on the on the Hodge Life panel.