Conveyancing Association publishes new version of Technical Protocol

The new edition has been updated in light of the recently launched Digital Conveyancing Protocol

Conveyancing Association publishes new version of Technical Protocol

The Conveyancing Association (CA) – the leading trade body for the conveyancing industry – has released the fifth and newest edition of its Conveyancing Technical Protocol.

Initially launched in 2013, the Technical Protocol is the result of CA members, panel management companies, and stakeholders working together to produce a document that outlines best practice, and delivers a robust and efficient conveyancing service through cooperation.

The document collates guidance from the Law Society, Legal Ombudsman, UK Finance, and case law to provide conveyancers with a point of reference for best practice.

The new edition, the trade body said, has been updated in light of its recently launched Digital Conveyancing Protocol document, designed to help firms benefit from the range of digital services available to support the homebuying and selling process. It has been written to include a range of recommendations for conveyancers acting on behalf of both the buyer and the seller.

The CA’s Technical Protocol now includes reference to a specific number of digital products and services that should be utilised by conveyancing firms, including:

  • Utilising, where appropriate, electronic communication as the first-choice option between the conveyancer and all parties via a secured portal or encrypted mail
  • Use of a compliant-digital ID which can enable the digital ID certificate to be shared among stakeholders to cut down on delays in the transaction
  • Use of a digital identity and anti-money laundering check which incorporates biometric checks and can identify potentially fraudulent use of identity
  • Reference to how a draft Transfer can now be prepared using the HM Land Registry Digital Registration Service for digital execution, as an alternative to using the standard TR1 form
  • Reference to how a digital version of the contract can now be signed by parties digitally

Conveyancing firms can access both the new Technical Protocol and the Digital Conveyancing Protocol on the Conveyancing Association website.

“Digital developments necessitated the drafting of our Digital Conveyancing Protocol document and, as a result of that document, we felt a new iteration of our Technical Protocol was required,” said Beth Rudolf (pictured), director of delivery at The Conveyancing Association.

“The two documents dovetail together and provide guidance and recommendations to all conveyancing firms on how they can use technology and digital products and services to cut down on delays in the transaction, to deal with additional enquiries quickly, to reduce post-completion queries and technical issues, to improve lender communication and how to improve in areas such as leasehold, estate rent charges, and fraud avoidance.

“This is the fifth edition of the Technical Protocol, and along with the Digital Conveyancing Protocol, we hope conveyancing firms can utilise these documents to help develop their service offering and to ensure we have a much smoother, less stressful home buying and selling process, not just for firms themselves but for all stakeholders, particularly consumers.

Rudolph added that they would continue to monitor the progress being made, particularly in terms of technology, and how it can support their focus on process improvements for all, and would continue to update the protocols to reflect this.

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