ENGLISH PROBATE SOLICITOR STRUCK OFF AFTER ROBBING ELDERLY CLIENT.
English Probate Solicitor struck off for flagrant breach of trust with elderly client, strange is in not why SRA only goes after sole traders which is a Probate Scam on its own.
Beresford and Pritchard from Clyde and Co in Salford done even worse they knowingly broke a Tomlin order more than 3 times and so far SRA has done naff all but others in government and house of lords are getting very angry and the clocking is ticking downwards and the case below shows its a game being done to others in our communities.
An sole practitioner who attempted to facilitate a house purchase for her civil partner by undervaluing an elderly client’s property has been struck off and ordered to pay nearly £45,000 in costs.
Julia Cooper, admitted in 1993, drafted an agreement for her then partner, referred to in the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal judgment as Person G, to purchase the property from Ms S, Cooper’s client. The agreement ‘contained terms potentially disadvantageous to her client and potentially advantageous to Person G,’ the tribunal found.
Cooper also drafted and arranged the execution of a will for Ms S which appointed herself as executrix and sole beneficiary, and during the SRA’s investigations made false and misleading statements.
Under the agreement, a ‘substantial but dilapidated’ property which S had inherited was to be sold to G for £240,000. The terms regarding the consequences of S’s failure to complete the sale were ‘plainly onerous’ the tribunal heard. The property was subsequently valued at some £450,000. The valuation was provided to Cooper but ‘there was no evidence of that valuation being communicated to [a firm of solicitors acting for Ms S], or of it being sent to Ms S.’
The sale was not made and no deposit was ever paid. No loss or harm were suffered, the tribunal was told.
The tribunal heard Cooper drafted a will, which named her as sole beneficiary, during the pandemic, but she did not consider the document ‘a legal matter’ as it had been drafted as a ‘temporary document.’ Describing Cooper’s evidence on the matter as ‘incredible’, the judgment stated added: ‘The tribunal did not accept that the respondent believed (either at the time she drafted the will, or during her evidence) that the will was not an important legal document.’
It added that it did not accept the pandemic ‘meant that improper conduct was justified.’
The 57-page judgment found Cooper’s conduct had the potential to cause ‘significant financial loss to her client’ and had caused ‘extensive harm’ to the profession’s reputation. It added that Cooper ‘acted in flagrant breach of the trust placed in her’.
The SDT found Cooper had sought to ‘deliberately mislead’ the SRA by saying S was not her client but a friend when she had written letters to others expressly stating that Ms S was her client.
It added: ‘The tribunal found that the respondent was motivated by financial gain. Her actions were planned. She had drafted the agreement and signed and stamped it when she knew that no legal advice had been sought, and that she had not advised her client to seek such advice. The respondent acted in flagrant breach of the trust placed in her by her elderly client.’
Cooper was struck off the roll and ordered to pay costs of £44,978.90.
An appeal to the High Court was dismissed by consent last month.