Tread carefully on the internet
The web is often known as the information superhighway – but, as all of us know, it is also the biggest source of misinformation on the planet.
Lies, propaganda and scams have had a lease of life never known before since the birth of The Net, which sadly is the flipside to the wonderful way it has also empowered our lives.
This more unsavoury side unfortunately has seen some unregulated sellers of legal services establishing themselves at the top of Google, as a recent report in the Law Society Gazette has revealed.
It showed that internet searches are leaving the public in potential jeopardy.
The research carried out by the Legal Services Board, which oversees law in England and Wales, showed many reputable firms of solicitors were excluded from the first page of internet search engines in response to basic legal questions.
Searches such as ‘legal help for divorce’ or ‘where to go for legal advice on a will’ often bring up lists for unregulated organisations, which on many occasions misadvise the public.
The findings estimated that the unregulated sector accounts for up to 30% of total sector turnover, which is an alarming statistic.
This analysis highlights in no uncertain terms how the public need to be on their toes when they have a legal query.
Coupled with the deregulation of some legal services means organisations, some of them disreputable, are using internet marketing as a means to get new custom –whilst sometimes the public think they are being given the right advice, when they are not.
We at Bowsers cannot stress enough just how vital it is that legal advice should be sought from a solicitor.
As solicitors we are heavily regulated. In other words we have to be right up to speed with what is happening with the law.
We also have indemnity insurance, which gives the customer added peace of mind – which the unregulated sector does not have.
Let’s be clear. Unregulated in its simplest terms, means no regulations. It is the Wild West, a lawless place, where you go to at your peril.
If you care to consider when you need legal advice, it is generally for big problems, where specialist advice is needed – and that is why legal mistakes can be extremely costly. So the plain fact is if you need to pursue a legal action a regulated local firm of solicitors with highly-trained staff is simply a price worth paying.