The current situation has been challenging operationally from a legal perspective. The ability to complete deals slowed down temporarily but it has brought in a spirit of change as to how business is handled, and we only hope this will continue in the future.
- Lenders Legal Documents – Some bridging and commercial lenders required these to be signed in front of a solicitor. These have recently been carried out via Zoom/Face Time meetings with the client or even just signed in front of an independent witness.
- Land Registry Deeds – Allowing the use of the “Mercury method”. This is an established law practice where physical documents or signing could not be established at the time of completion and this was common in international law. Land registry has now allowed this practice meaning it is easier for solicitors and conveyances to complete deals without a physical meeting.
- Zoom/Facetime Meetings – Zoom and Facetime have been allowed for independent legal advice rather than physical face to face.
- KYC (Know you customer) – Previously, passports or other means to identify clients were sent to solicitors as part of the KYC checks. Video Link Calls now allow for these checks to be carried out for a true likeness. In-line passport checks can be carried out to confirm the document provided is authentic.
- Title Indemnity Insurance -There has been more use of title indemnity insurance rather than title investigation. Advocate Finance are big supporters of this process because the legal process can take days rather than weeks in the case of refinancing.
We are unsure which Solicitors are adopting these processes, but the pro-active ones are implementing them to ensure deals are not stuck of the current pandemic and we only hope this continue in the future.
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Director – Advocate Finance Ltd
Professional landlords only. Any property used as security, which may include your home, may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.