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Practice Excellence Awards 2019 - in association with the ILFM

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This year we’re doing something different for everyone running SME law firms – recognising excellence in driving efficiency, creating innovation and focusing on people. That’s why we’re proud to launch the LPM Practice...

Legal Finance - Insider Insight

Tim Kidd
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The ILFM’s history is one of support, advice and training. Over the years we have grown in tandem with new compliances and regulations to become the leading non-profit organisation for legal finance professionals. The ILFM was founded in 1978,...

An overview for COFAs of the anti money laundering requirements for a firm's clients

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COFAs are not necessarily responsible for the money-laundering requirements relating to a law firm’s clients. However, a recent disciplinary tribunal fined a principal, who was also the firm’s COFA, for failing to adhere to the relevant...

Legal Finance - What to expect and how the ILFM helps

Tim Kidd
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  Your journey in an Accounts Department of a Law Firm can be daunting.  It’s an exciting time, knowing you are in a specialist area of finance.  From bank reconciliations, to data entry, to understanding how lawyers and clients...

Getting ready for the year ahead

Darren Whelan AILFM
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Darren Whelan highlights the key changes ILFM members need to be on top of as the New Year gets under way... Happy New Year!  It sounds and feels a little strange wishing you all a happy new year considering I’m sat at Birmingham New Street...

Our 2019 Legal Accounts Salary Survey is now live...

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...and we again need to ask for your help in compiling the invaluable data, which allows us to produce the most comprehensive survey of its kind for this niche community.              The legal accounts community...

With major reforms to Law Firms coming in April why are so many law firms in the dark or in denial?

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In their recent Bellwether discussion paper, ‘ A dangerous allegiance to the status quo? ’, LexisNexis published the results of a major market research project looking at how Small and Independent Law firms are responding to the Solicitors...

Quill's employees credited with ILFM membership

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                           November 2018 Quill has strengthened its ties with The Institute of Legal Finance & Management (ILFM) by establishing a close partnership that will...

Can your Legal Accounts Software Make Tax Digital?

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Next Spring, something massive is coming that is going to lead to huge changes for millions of businesses in the UK. No, not Brexit, we’re talking about Making Tax Digital. Paul Wynn at DPS Software explains what this means for your existing accounting...

Chairs Message Nov/Dec 2018

Darren Whelan AILFM
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As I write this, temperatures have already plummeted to near zero. Looking out of the window, Summer and Autumn appear to be greeting one another as old friends as we begin the transition from one season to another. Summer, and 2018 overall, almost seem like...

ILFM 40th Anniversary Celebration Events

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40 years of supporting our members – come and celebrate with us and find out more about the ILFM. The Institute reaches a special anniversary this year. To celebrate its 40 years representing our members in the legal finance...

Chairs Message Sept/Oct 2018

Sue Williams FILFM
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Well, here we are approaching the Autumn and we have our annual Conference and AGM coming up in November. We have a great line up of speakers for the Conference, including Chris Handford, Director of Policy for the SRA, so we will be hearing all about the up...

Don't miss the Institute's 2018 Annual Conference

Tim Kidd
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With just a few weeks to go until the start of our conference celebrating the Institute’s 40 th anniversary, you still have an opportunity to book your place at our early-bird discounted rate. For me, these are the highlights I’m most...

The ILFM listed legal software suppliers guide 2018-2019.

Tim Kidd
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Deciding which new or replacement software is appropriate for our firms has never been easy, we have to take so many factors into account. Cost is always a critical consideration, but we also have to include compliance, effectiveness and response times. Not...

Winner for 2018 of the ILFM Solicitors' Software Users Award

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Each year ILFM Members are asked to feedback on the software they use every day by way of a survey response to choose an award winner. Once all the data is collected and results determined, an announcement is made and an award...

Chairs Message July/August 2018

Sue Williams FILFM
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The SRA published a report in May evaluating their reforms to the Accountants’ report requirements. They found that in the period June to November 2017 they received 923 qualified reports, which is only a third of the number received in the same period...

Iceberg and the ILFM award first legal finance scholarship

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   The first legal finance scholarship in a three-year programme to encourage learning by The Institute of Legal Finance and Management (ILFM) has been awarded. Practice Manager Sarfraz Ahmed has been selected for the first scholarship,...

A second pair of eyes: how can accounts staff help the fight against money laundering

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Money Laundering is a massive global issue. Recent estimates are that over $1trillion of illicit funds are laundered annually, with £90bn of that in the UK. The problem is seemingly getting worse, and the professionals are coming under increased...

The aftermath of cybercrime - cofa actions

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Law firms are commonly targeted by cybercriminals and cybercrime presents a perpetual daily risk for them. Robust controls help prevent cybercrime in the first place, but, in this edition of COFA Corner, we look at the actions a law firm and its COFA must...

Chairs Message May/June 2018

Sue Williams FILFM
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Hello!  I’m sure you will all be surprised to see another Chair’s Message from me, as I completed my two years as chair at the AGM at the end of November and handed over to my Vice Chair, Jacky Ellis. I am very sorry to tell you that Jacky...

COFAS - SRA Accounts Rules changes on the horizon: time to prepare?

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In June 2017, the SRA published responses to the third and final phase of its review of the SRA Accounts Rules. The consultation looked to simplify the Account Rules, redefine the definition of client money and provide an alternative to holding client money...

COFAs - PI insurance claims and losses: are your client payment controls robust?

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One of the COFA’s core duties is to safeguard client money by ensuring the law firm has sound accounting controls and procedures. In this edition of COFA Corner, we look more specifically at a law firm’s payment controls. We also look at...

2018 Legal Accounts Salary Survey

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Last year saw a fantastic response to our annual salary survey, carried out in association with Balance Recruitment. We would love to see even more data, particularly from members in Wales and Northern England. Make sure you take part and enter the prize...

The VAT treatment of statutory charges such as land charges and land registry fees etc

Darren Whelan AILFM
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The ILFM recognise that there has been an increase in Member queries with regards to the VAT treatment of statutory charges such as land charges and land registry fees etc as a result of the Brabners First Tier Tribunal decision. For clarity, there is no...

COFAs - disbursement or recharge? VAT is the question

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Readers will no doubt have read about the recent VAT case, Brabners v HMRC. Brabners is a north- west firm of lawyers, which was supported by the Law Society in an unsuccessful appeal against an HMRC VAT assessment. The case primarily rested on whether...

FREE Online Excel Course for Members - DEMYSTIFY MICROSOFT EXCEL IN FOUR HOURS.

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£39.00   £0.00 to ILFM Members This online course contains four hours of basic Excel training split across-22 modules. If you’re new to Excel or have limited knowledge of Excel, this course is for you. In this course you...

VAT and online property searches - Updated 12th Oct

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  Following a recent Tribunal decision, the leading North-West law firm Brabners faces a £68,000 VAT bill for electronic local authority property searches it obtained by using a search agency, after the tribunal ruled that they should not have...

Financial reporting and management accounting for COFAs

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Monitoring financial stability is an important aspect of the COFA’s role and one essential tool is having timely financial management information. This information not only helps with monitoring financial stability and performance, but also has many...

Seven reasons why you can't miss the ILFM Annual Conference 2017

Tim Kidd
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With just ten weeks to go until the Annual ILFM conference,  the team asked me what I’m most looking forward to. When I stopped to give this some thought, I realised there was quite a lot – it’s an exciting year for the ILFM...

YOU have voted Insight Legal as your winner!

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For the second year running, you have voted Insight Legal as your winner! This is the nineth time that ILFM members have been surveyed to choose an award winner and we again asked the users of legal accounts software to vote for their legal accounts...

Looking to the Future: SRA Accounts Rules Review

Sue Williams FILFM
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  The SRA have today published their decisions following consultations on “Looking to the Future: Flexibility and Public Protection” and “Looking to the Future: Accounts Rules Review”.  Following extensive consultation and...

North Wales Branch

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Following the success of the Cymru branch, the ILFM would like to introduce a new branch for members in North Wales. Would you be interested in joining a branch in your area? We are looking for volunteers who can assist in getting this new branch...

2017 Legal Accounts Salary Survey

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It’s that time of year again, and the results are now in! The ILFM and specialist legal accountancy recruitment consultancy Balance Recruitment have teamed up to produce a 2017 Legal Accounts Salary Survey. A huge thank you to all of those who took...

Seven important employment law changes taking place this April

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From businessadvice.co.uk   (Expert Advice for the engine room of the British economy) April 2017 will see wide-reaching changes in UK employment law Next month marks the busiest time of year, where major employment law changes will take...

Are COFA's Ready for Change?

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During 2016 we saw the third phase of the SRA consultations to undertake a full review of the SRA Accounts Rules. This phase of the consultation put forward some significant changes to the SRA Accounts Rules and in particular a change in the definition of...

ILFM Listed Legal Software Suppliers Guide 2017

Tim Kidd
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Welcome to the Institute’s 2017 guide to listed legal software suppliers Deciding on what new or replacement software is appropriate for our firms has never been easy: we have to take so many factors into account. Cost is always a critical...

ILFM 2018 Scholarships for Members

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Barry Hilton was one of the founders of the Institute and one of his passions was the education and advancement of legal accounting staff. Barry was responsible for writing many of the Institute’s original courses and seminars along with being a...

2017 Salary Survey

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A huge thank you to everyone who participated in our now award-winning 2016 Legal Accounts Salary Survey. For 2017 we’re kicking the process off slightly earlier than usual to allow more time and to help generate an ever greater volume of...

Seven reasons why you can't miss the ILFM Annual Conference

Tim Kidd
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With less than six weeks to go until the Annual ILFM conference entitled ‘Brave New World’, the team asked me what I’m most looking forward to. When I stopped to give this some thought, I realised there was quite a lot – it’s an...

Automating international payments

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Automating international payments - the many advantages for law firms expanding globally Globalisation of the legal market is still growing, as law firms tap into the potential for expansion that cross-border markets offer. Firms venturing into...

2016 Salary Survey Results

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The ILFM have once again teamed up with specialist legal business services recruitment consultancy Balance Recruitment to produce the 2016 Legal Accounts Salary Survey and we have had a whopping response with an increase in participation across the length...

Entrepreneurs' Relief - a Budget 2016 U-Turn?

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Entrepreneurs’ Relief – a Budget 2016 U-turn?   We have written previously for Legal Abacus on the various changes that have been made to the availability of Entrepreneurs’ Relief on the value of goodwill when incorporating...

The Accountants Report and the COFA role.

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Jason Mitchell looks at how the latest changes to the accountant’s reporting regime impact on the COFA role.   On 30 October 2015 the SRA published the latest round of changes made to the accountant’s report regime (updated on 17 December...

The COFA & Cybercrime Prevention

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The legal sector continues to be at the forefront of cyber-attacks from fraudsters attempting to access and extract both office and client money from a legal practice. Legal Abacus has recently focused on this issue from a variety of angles. Here Jason...

Win a FREE Place at ILFM Conference 2016

Tim Kidd
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  Dear Members,  To complete our recent rebranding exercise we wanted to ask you about your ideas for an ILFM strapline.   You will of heard many many straplines in everyday life... Just do it, Vorsprung durch technik, I'm lovin'...

The Access to Justice Foundation Award

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Nominations are still open for the  The Access to Justice Foundation Award , organised in conjunction with the LawWorks & Attorney General Student Awards 2016 and are looking for your nominations of educational institutions or...

Salary Survey 2016 - Win an iPad Mini

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Our eagerly anticipated Legal Accounts  Salary Survey  is back for a fifth year and we need to ask for your assistance to help us compile the most comprehensive salary survey available for those working within the accounts departments...

Clio offers ILFM Members discounted rate

Tim Kidd
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Clio offers ILFM Members discounted rate via member benefits program. This partnership allows the Institute’s members to subscribe to Clio at a discounted rate. “We’re delighted to be offering Clio as a member benefit to...

SRA launches a new consumer credit toolkit

Richard Hill AILFM
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On 19 January 2016, the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) published a new webpage  for SRA-authorised firms involved in, or considering becoming involved in, the carrying on of consumer credit activities under Part 20 of the Financial Services and...