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approved by St James Place

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

Find an Approved Solicitor on the St James Place Bank Conveyancing Panel

Examples of recent questions relating to the St James Place Conveyancing Panel

My wife and I are novices when it comes to buying a property. Within the last couple of days our solicitor has forwarded the sale agreement to sign with a detailed report in anticipation of exchanging contracts shortly. St James Place have this evening contacted us to inform me that there is now an issue as our conveyancer is not on their approved list of lawyers. What do we do from here?
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 Quality Scheme. Your property lawyers should contact St James Place and see if they can apply for membership of the St James Place conveyancing panel, but if that is not viable St James Place will instruct their own solicitors to act. You are not legally obliged to appoint a law firm on the St James Place conveyancing panel as you are at liberty to use your preferred lawyers, in which case it will likely add costs, and it may delay matters as you have another set of people involved.

My lawyer has identified a difference when comparing the assumptions in St James Place’s valuation survey and what is in the conveyancing documents. My lawyer says that as he is on the St James Place conveyancing panel he needs to check that the bank is happy with this discrepancy and is content go ahead. Is my conveyancer’s stance right?
A precondition to being on the St James Place approved panel is to comply with the CML Handbook requirements (last updated for this lender on St James Place) 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.
I need to find a St James Place panel solicitor in Belfast. Could you help me?
It is not clear why you need a St James Place panel solicitor but in any event, if you can not find one on our search tool you will need to speak directly to St James Place to find out which solicitors in St James Place are on their panel. If you do find such a firm not listed please direct them to our site to list. At a fee of one pound per month it is not expensive to register on the site
I am trying to get my ex-husband taken off the mortgage deeds. Can St James Place really insist on which solicitor I can or can not use?
You can use any solicitor you like but St James Place then has the right to appoint a different solicitor to act for them at your expense. It might be more cost effective and quicker to instruct a lawyer who is on the St James Place solicitors panel
Are all solicitors on the St James Place conveyancing panel regulated by the SRA?
As a firm of solicitors, in order to be on the St James Place conveyancing panel they would need to be regulated by the Solicitors Regulatory Authority. Many lenders do allow licenced conveyancers on their panel in which case such firms would be regulated by the Council of Licensed Conveyancers (CLC).
Is it common for St James Place to withdraw a mortgage offer and what would be the reasoning?
Lenders such as St James Place can revoke their mortgage offer although this is unusual. should St James Place withdraw their offer they may or may not inform you or the lawyer as to their reasoning. There are many potential reasons but here are a few examples:
  • A cashback to the buyer, or | part of the price includes a non-cash incentive to the buyer (eg paid stamp duty land tax),or | any indirect incentive (cash or non cash) or rental guarantee, of which the lender was previously unaware
  • Situations where information provided by the borrower that enabled the lender to make a lending decision is fraudulent, incorrect or misleading.
  • Where the purchase price and borrowers direct contribution differ to details on the mortgage application form completed by the borrower
  • Following advice from the property assessor on their lender panel or If the lender has doubts about the effectiveness of the valuation as a result of subsequent events or information received post valuation but pre completion
  • If the lender reasonably suspects that the applicant, borrower, mortgagor or guarantor is involved in any criminal or fraudulent activity, including trading in illegal drugs or other substances, theft, robbery, deception or other serious offences, or if the applicant borrower, mortgagor or guarantor has a conviction for any serious criminal offence, including theft, deception, fraud, robbery or trade in illegal drugs or other substances;
I was told two weeks ago that my mortgage has been agreed to by St James Place. Is it usual for St James Place to only issue the offer once my solicitor is approved on their conveyancing panel?
A lender would not issue a mortgage until they have details of a lawyer on their panel. It can take a few weeks for St James Place to deal with your lawyers application to be on the St James Place conveyancing panel. There's no guarantee that your solicitors will be accepted.