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Legal Finance Professionals

 

SRA Interest Rates News Update May 2024

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The SRA has issued an update regarding interest rates and client account, specifically focusing on the importance of paying interest fairly. According to the Law Society’s recent financial benchmarking survey , many law firms have and still are...

Credit Card Facilities what you need to know

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Law Firms who are thinking of accepting payments for credit cards into their client accounts should be aware of the risks and use the ILFM's pointers to navigate potential pitfalls. When it comes to deciding if the law firm accounts department will...

Flexible working laws are changing from 6 April...are you prepared?

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From 6th April 2024, the newly approved Employment Rights Bill (Flexible Working ) will go through. What does this mean for us as employees AND employers? Employment Rights Bill (Flexible Working) Employees can make a flexible working request twice...

ChatGPT vs Human

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RESEARCH: Blog on accuracies when relying on GenAI for technical information. The ILFM is the go-to professional body for business support roles in legal finance, compliance and practice management and so we urge members and those in legal roles to...

HMRC Self-Assessment Helpline Tax News

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Helplines for self-assessment tax advice were going to be drastically cut but then yesterday afternoon the HMRC did a 180 degree turn around on that decision! What’s going on with the HMRC? HMRC was going to close its telephone helpline...

Residual balances on law firm client accounts

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Regulated law firms in England & Wales hold dual ledgers and residual client account balances need prompt attention. The accounts law firms hold are: business accounts client accounts Client accounts are heavily regulated under the SRA...

SRA news for consumer protection and finance risk management

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ILFM feedback to the SRA's news on consumer protection and client account risk management Updated 20 February 2024 The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has launched a review of consumer protection in response to evolving risks in the legal...

What are the Risks Associated with AI in Legal Finance

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Updated 6 February 2024 Artificial intelligence (AI) is literally everywhere in the news and conversations. There is so much noise surrounding this topic and no more so than in law firms, from tech to marketing to support to transparency to legislation...

ILFM Honorary Fellowship awarded to Jatinderpal Loyal

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ILFM News - Jatinderpal Loyal, Honorary Fellow ANNOUNCEMENT:   Tim Kidd, Chief Executive of the ILFM, has today confirmed Jatinderpal Loyal has been made an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Legal Finance & Management for his outstanding...

Legal Ombudsman LeO important notice - change of address

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The Legal Ombudsman is changing its postal address with effect from Monday 22 January 2024. The Legal Ombudsman’s new postal address will be: Legal Ombudsman PO Box 6167 Slough SL1 0EH   Why is change important for your firm's...

Is the 2024 legal market showing signs of slowing?

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Latest LexisNexis research predicts a slower growth for the 2024 legal market Back in October 2023, LexisNexis released its "Gross Legal Product (GLP) Index report, which predicts the legal sector growth will drop to +2% in 2024 (from...

Legal Finance and Practice Management PII questions answered

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Questions coming from practice managers and reporting accountants at the our November Conference in regard to professional indemnity insurance (pii). Joel Harding, from Howden Broking, was one of our guest speakers at the ILFM’s November Virtual...

Why AML training is beneficial for law firm support staff

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Updated 14 May 2024 Let’s begin with the fact that the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has upped its powers for their anti-money laundering supervision and investigation measures. The SRA now has dedicated resources to ensure law firms...

Qualified Accountant's Report (QAR) and Legal Finance Requirements

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The ILFM work with the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) to receive updates and priorities that we can impart to our members. Going forward, the SRA’s focus is to: Deliver high professional standards. Strengthen its risk based and proactive...

Are Conveyancing Solicitors at Risk of Money Laundering

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Conveyancing solicitors and CILEx lawyers play a critical role in preventing money laundering. They are the gatekeepers of property transactions and must remain vigilant whilst upholding professional standards. What are the best practices, firmwide, to...

Is the legal market slowing down?

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The latest Gross Legal Product (GLP) Index Report from LexisNexis is an interesting read, with the data showing that the post-pandemic legal bubble is under pressure and the research predicts the legal market's slowing down for...

All hands on deck for law firm marketing

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Greater Than the Sum of Its Parts: Why Law Firm Marketing Requires All Hands Guest writer and ILFM Member Rewards Partner, Lara Squires from Consortium, gives us her take on why it takes a whole team to market a law firm Marketing is all about...

ILFM and Law Society of Northern Ireland in partnership

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 12 September 2023 The Law Society of Northern Ireland partners with the Institute of Legal Finance & Management (ILFM) The Law Society of Northern Ireland and the Institute of Legal Finance & Management (ILFM) announced today that...

Elephants in the room - law firm credit control and cashflow

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Guest writer, Simon McCrum, gives us his opinion on data that shows law firms can take up to 6 months before they get paid for work they have done. Looking at the recent piece in the Law Society Gazette , law firms can still take 3-6 months to...

GSCE Results - now what?

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Good luck to everyone who sat their GCSEs and are reading their results today. It’s a big day for students as well as parents, teachers and carers who support these young people with their future studies and career choices. The General Certificate...

Legal Updates with Legislation and Companies House News 2023

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Whether your law firm offers B2B services, or your practice itself requires this information to function seamlessly, this update is for you to read and share. In 2023, Companies House introduced new legislation to improve the transparency of UK companies...

Social Mobility in the Legal and Finance Profession

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The Institute of Legal Finance & Management (ILFM), by default, boosts socio-economic diversity through our qualifications and training into UK Law Firms. The majority of our students who come through the ILFM to study legal finance have not had...

Legal Software - Stick or Twist

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Legal Software and how to avoid a software change being too much of a gamble Guest writer and ILFM member, Alex Simons, from the Law Factory LLP giv es us his take on legal cashiering and legal software. I’ve been working in legal...

How does your law firm stay compliant in a heavily regulated profession

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The Institute of Legal Finance & Management (ILFM) membership is the first port of call for UK law firm COFAs (Compliance Officer for Finance & Administration).  In England & Wales, law firms are required to appoint a Compliance...

Online Safety Bill and what it means to law firms

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Online Safety Bill – are you ready and what does it mean for your law firm? At the time of writing, the online safety bill is at the Report Stage of the bill at the House of Lords, i.e. it’s very nearly coming to fruition. MPs and law...

Crowe Law Firm Benchmarking Survey 2023

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Crowe’s annual Law Firm Benchmarking survey is live! We are delighted to announce that Crowe have launched their 2023 Law Firm Benchmarking survey , working in conjunction with the Institute of Legal Finance and Management (ILFM) for the...

Training for the Role of a COFA in a law firm

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If your law firm is authorised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) then there is a requirement that a COFA and a COLP is appointed. A COFA is a compliance officer for finance and administration, and a COLP is a compliance officer for legal...

Interest Rate Increase and Law Firm Cashflow

Karen Edwards FCILEx ILFM(Dip)
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Interest rates are currently 4.5% and set to increase again- are you getting the most from your client account deposits?   Some law firm owners and partners may wonder if this is a legitimate source of income and whether looking around for...

Double Entry Bookkeeping Guide for Law Firms

Karen Edwards FCILEx ILFM(Dip)
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The Institute of Legal Finance & Management (ILFM) is the educational body for qualifying bookkeepers to become confident legal cashiers. Working in a legal practice and looking after their books is detailed and intricate, and couple that with adhering...

Legal Cashiers - bookkeeping for law firms

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Legal Cashiers - bookkeeping for law firms In a solicitor's practice the accounting and finance functions are paramount in keeping the law firm compliant and regulated, whilst keeping cashflow and double entry bookkeeping managed efficiently and up...

Advice for Working and Studying at the same time

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Guest writer and ILFM Member and Award Winner, Jess Davis ILFMDip Walking across the stage for my university graduation, and receiving my Bachelors with Honours degree in psychology in October 2021, I would never have expected that only a few...

Coaching and Mentoring for Law Firm Employee Retention

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Guest writer is Dr Benita Maynard, Chartered FCIPD and Director at North-52 My colleague, Tessa Dodwell , is thrilled to have been asked by the Institute of Legal Finance & Management (ILFM) to speak at their Spring Conference this...

ILFM Correspondence Course Study Advice for ADHD

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Living with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) whilst working, studying and often parenting can feel completely overwhelming. We have hundreds of students (adult) here at the Institute of Legal Finance and Management (ILFM) and although...

The route to becoming a Legal Accounts Manager in a Law Firm

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By guest writer, Nichola Macciocchi FILFM, a Fellowship ILFM member and Legal Accounts Manager at a leading law firm in Northumberland . Always a driven child, I was really into my sport and loved art at school and quite competitive! Like many of my...

Spring Budget - ILFM Snapshot

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Chancellor Jeremy Hunt delivered a ‘ Budget for Growth ’ after the Office for Budget Responsibility forecast a stronger than expected performance from the UK economy this year with inflation continuing to fall. Let’s look into the...

Law Firm Benchmarking Survey 2022 - Analysis

Tim Kidd
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Crowe , in partnership with the Institute of Legal Finance & Management (ILFM), carried out a comprehensive benchmarking survey from 50 UK law firms and the results are now in. The results are based predominantly on UK law firms’ data sent in...

How to get the best candidate for your law firm

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Guest writer, Richard Hooper from Balance Recruitment, tells us his take on how best to attract and retain the right person for your law firm. I’ll soon be approaching 20 years of recruiting within the legal finance community and I’m looking...

Skills To Future-Proof Your Career in Law and Finance

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Guest writer, Joanna Gaudoin, is a best selling author and Managing Director of Insight Out Image . She helps professionals with their technical skills whilst improving their non-technical ones to aid career progression and boost their...

Employee wellbeing in the legal industry

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How great is it that we can openly discuss being healthy in both body and mind nowadays. There was a time when burnout, depression and anxiety at work were seen as inconsequential. Stiff upper lip, just get on with it mentality. Any good manager will know...

Karen Edwards joins the ILFM as Head of Professional Development

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  The ILFM announces that Karen Edwards joins as the Head of Professional Development The Institute of Legal Finance & Management (ILFM) announced on Wednesday 22 February 2023 the appointment of Karen Edwards as the new Head of...

The ILFM and LGBT History Month

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Guest writer, Mark Adderley, ILFM Council Member and Manager at Crowe has kindly written this article for us in this LGBT history month. LGBT history month is a time of reflection for many people in the LGBTQ+ community. It’s a time to...

How modern law firms can attract and retain talent

Tim Kidd
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Tim Kidd, Chief Executive of the Institute of Legal Finance and Management (ILFM) , shares his thoughts on how modern law firms can attract and retain talent - a conversation with Osprey Approach in their series of webinars. I was delighted to take part...

Is your Law Firm starting to offer Credit Cards for Payments?

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Receiving credit card payments in a law firm can ease cashflow as a simple, effective and affordable way of getting clients to pay their invoices quickly.   That said, as a Finance Director or Legal Cashier in a Law Firm, you must ask yourself a...

Access to Justice from a Law Grad's POV

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Guest writer, Davina Patel from Access to Justice Foundation ATJF and supporter of the ILFM Access to Justice Foundation and working with the ILFM – a personal perspective Having met with Elaine Pasini, Head of Communications at the...

Case Study of a Legal Finance Director

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In the life of Legal Finance - 25 years and Counting Guest writer, Marc Pegg, ILFM Member and Finance Director at Actons Solicitors. My first position at a law firm would begin in the summer of 1997 at the tender age of 17. Careers Advice! ...

Dealing with Winter Blues in Law Firm Offices

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Updated January 2024  Your out-of-office at Christmas time was on, and you were signing off to enjoy the festive period! You’re now back, the number of emails gathering in your inbox is upsetting, and the January weather has hit you like...

Legal Finance Support from LawCare Charity

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Without fail World Mental Health Day #WMHD falls on the same day of the same month each year. If you’re not already aware, it’s 10 th October! The ILFM and LawCare – Legal Finance Professionals’ Mental Health Matters Legal...

Stamp Duty and the Impact on Legal Finance Professionals

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Here we go again! Stamp duty changes in the government’s mini-budget. A number of changes are made to the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) regime but in the main, the changes increase the amount that a purchaser can pay for a residential property before...

Managing Credit - Law Firm Cash

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Managing credit has always been something that causes stress for law firms as it brings plenty of unexpected challenges for solicitors and their accounts department. As we all know in the legal sector, it’s important for law firms to understand...

Is your legal cashier secure in their knowledge of compliance?

Tim Kidd
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The pressures on the accounts department in a law firm is immense. Anyone working in finance and law gets it! The SRA have made the Accounts Rules less stressful, however the knowledge anyone, from legal cashier > bookkeeper > finance manager > COFA...

Savvy consumers and Legal Firms - Why your legal cashiers need training and support

Tim Kidd
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We are consumers, all of us, so you’ll understand when we explain why we are a savvy lot when choosing a law firm to work with our business, or indeed, our personal affairs. How many people in your Accounts Department do you know? The Director? The...

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...