High Court victory

The Firm was instructed following an error at an election on the 2nd May 2019. As a result, it transpired that a candidate was elected in error whereas another candidate who should have been elected was not.
The Firm had to act quickly given the deadline to file a Petition within 21 days from the date of the election. The Firm was selected by the Petitioner as a direct result of our Higher Rights of Audience accreditation. We therefore conducted the matter from start to finish without the need to instruct Counsel.

We made the necessary applications on time which involved filing the Petition, the Application to fix the amount of security for costs and for the receipt of the payment. At each stage we were required to serve all 21 Respondents.

In an effort to resolve the matter quickly, an agreed application was made to the County Court for a recount to take place. It was at that Hearing, the true results were revealed by the District Judge. However, the County Court does not have the jurisdiction to rectify the situation. That power is reserved to the High Court.

Mr George attended the Hearing on the 6th September 2019 at the Queens Bench Division of the High Court. Having liaised with both the Solicitor and Counsel for the Returning Officer, he appeared before the Honourable Mr Justice Knowles and the Honourable Mr Justice Superstone. Mr George presented the agreed Special Case pursuant to section 146(3) of the Representation of the People Act 1983 which was approved and included an Order for costs.

TOP TIPS WHEN BUYING OR SELLING A PROPERTY

A conveyancing transaction is often the biggest transaction of your life. It can be a stressful time and it is important to choose the right Law Firm to act for you. Here are some suggestions on how to make your transaction move as swiftly as possible.

Choose the right Estate Agent

A good estate agent is important, when buying or selling a house, given that they can speak to everyone in the chain. Their ability to communicate with all parties helps to ensure that the transaction proceeds swiftly.

We at francis george, solicitor-advocate are independent of all Estate Agents and there are no hidden referral fees. We can help you choose a good local estate agent in Swindon or Witney that is right for your move.

Choose the right Law Firm

A Law Firm with local knowledge is key. We at francis george, solicitor-advocate have been established for 12 years and have developed a trustworthy and reliable Conveyancing department dealing with Residential Property, Commercial Property and Leases.

We are also proud to have received the Law Society Conveyancing Quality Scheme accreditation which recognises the standard and quality of the Firms conveyancing practices. You can make a difference in the time scales by instructing a Conveyancer as early as possible.

Does the transaction involve a Freehold or a Leasehold

It is important to bear in mind that a Leasehold property requires a lot of additional legal information. This is because there is often a Management Company that collects rent and service charges. They often prepare a ‘Legal Pack’ which must be requested. By having this information available at the outset, you could reduce the length of the transaction.

Code of conduct

All Solicitors must follow a strict code of conduct. You may often think that there is a quicker way’ but you should remain conscious of the fact that the steps that your Solicitor will take are designed to protect you.

Conveyancing process

Ask us for a copy of our easy to follow Conveyancing Flowchart which will help you to understand the stages involved in a Conveyancing transaction. Some of the things you can do to make the transaction proceed swiftly are as follows:

  • ID documents

Present your identity documents (usually a passport or official photographic identity document) to your Conveyancer as soon as possible to ensure that they can proceed with the transaction quickly.

  • Monies on account

Paying monies on account will allow your Conveyancer to apply for searches and/or obtain Title Deeds from the Land Registry which will reduce delays in the transaction.

  • Sign and return documents as soon as possible

Your Conveyancer will inevitably ask you questions and/or seek your instructions. Ultimately it is for your Conveyancer to advise you on your options which will then allow you to make a decision and provide instructions. Responding to your Conveyancer quickly will help ensure that your Conveyancer can proceed with matters.

  • Completion Dates

Inform your Conveyancer of any dates when you cannot complete your transaction so that they can relay the information to the rest of the chain at the outset. This will assist in agreeing a date that suits everyone. Use your resources. An Estate Agent can often help negotiating dates within the chain.

  • Completion Monies  

Send completion monies preferably by internet banking. Your Conveyancer will retain the sums in the designated client account that they have created solely for your transaction. It is essential to ensure that your Conveyancer has cleared funds at least the day before completion.

  • Ready to Move

When selling a property you should ensure that you have vacated the property by 12:00 pm and ensure that it is left in a tidy condition.  This is a contractual term and failing to do so could result in a claim being made against you.

Leading Swindon solicitors opens new Witney office

The firm has opened a new office in Witney, 1 High Street, OX28 6HW, Oxfordshire. Since opening our first office in 2007, the firm has garnered a first-class reputation in Wiltshire and across the UK. The new Witney office is opening to help meet the huge demand for the firm’s services in nearby Oxford and the surrounding Cotswolds.

Managing Director, Francis George LLB (Hons) says, “I’m delighted to announce the opening of our new office in Witney. I believe the expansion will help to better serve the needs of existing and new clients in and around the Oxford area.”
The firm is proving hugely popular with clients, as our many 5-star reviews on Google and social media attest. Last year, we were shortlisted for the prestigious Family Solicitor of the Year UK 2018 award. The company was also shortlisted for Advocacy Solicitor of the Year UK 2018.

In 2017, the firm won Best Divorce Law Firm at the globally prestigious Dispute Resolution Awards. Francis says he believes the reason for the firm’s success lies in “our ability to listen and understand our clients’ needs and in our steadfast dedication to helping them reach a satisfactory conclusion, no matter what their legal issue may be”.

The new office is on High Street, Witney’s main road, which remains almost constantly busy during business hours. The new location makes Francis George Solicitor-Advocate ideally placed to meet the legal needs of the town’s 108,000 residents and its many thriving businesses.

The firm specialises in litigation and pre-litigation. Its team has decades of combined experience in family law, commercial work, probate and conveyancing. As well as providing legal advice on a broad range of issues, the firm takes pride in its ability to ensure its services remain cost effective.

Francis George graduated in Law from Hull University in 1992 and achieved his higher rights qualification after gaining experience in civil and family law litigation. Francis is a member of the Law Society’s Expert Family Panel. He is also Chairman of the local Resolution, a national organisation dedicated to dealing sensitively with matters of family law.

In 2006, Francis was listed personally in the Legal 500, which assesses UK solicitors on their strengths. This accolade illustrates how the firm’s Managing Director strives for excellence and demands the same high standards from every member of his team. However, the firm’s glowing online reviews are also testament to the way in which he and his team support their clients in a friendly, non-confrontational way.

Leading Swindon-based solicitor Francis George to join elite panel at legal practice management (LPM) west

Wednesday 24 April, 2019, DoubleTree by Hilton Bristol City Centre

Senior partner at Swindon-based francis george solicitor-advocate, Francis George, has been invited to join an elite panel at Legal Practice Management (LPM) West, to discuss ‘The future workforce’ which forms part of the People Perfection Session. LPM is the ultimate event for practice management leaders in SME law firms across the UK and takes place on Wednesday 24 April, 2019 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Bristol City Centre.

“I am delighted to be asked to join the other illustrious panellists to discuss the future workforce which is an extremely important topic,” said Francis. “Our discussions will cover: graduate trainee programmes, all-important issues around employee mental health and wellbeing, training managers to deal with employee health, why the debate should not be all about flexibility and whether flexibility can improve the bottom line.”

The future workforce panel discussion (scheduled for 15:20-16:10) highlights how LPM provides a wealth of helpful advice and useful resources for SME legal practices leaders, as well as allowing them to share their personal experiences.

The one-day conference will be attended by over 100 practice managers, directors, operational directors and heads of finance from SME firms across the West.

The future workforce panel discussion will be led by Sara Duxbury, business psychologist at Carter Corson, and Francis will be joining Mary Bonsor, CEO, F-LEX, Henry Coates, bookings assistant F-LEX and Lucy Palmer, HR director, Stephens Scown.

As well as his role as a senior partner with francis george solicitor advocate, Francis is chair of the North Wiltshire branch of Resolution, a growing group of family lawyers which works to resolve disputes and family related cases constructively and amicably.

In 2018 the company was shortlisted in the 2018 Family Solicitor of the Year Awards.

“I am very much looking forward to participating in the future workforce panel discussion as well as attending as many of the other Agenda sessions I am able,” said George.

To book your place at LPM West register at: https://www.lpmmag.co.uk/event/lpm-west-2019/

Top Swindon solicitors take on Ben Nevis challenge for North Wilts Resolution

A team from francis george solicitor-advocate, one of the leading solicitors’ firms for the Swindon area, is climbing Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain peak at 1,345m above sea level, to help support North Wiltshire Resolution.

Francis George, senior partner at the firm, is also chair of the North Wiltshire branch of Resolution, a growing group of family lawyers which works to resolve disputes and family-related cases constructively and amicably.

Francis said “Divorce and separation can be a mountain to climb unless handled effectively”.

He will be joined on the climb by business partner Asif Robbani and a trainee lawyer at francis george solicitor-advocate, Ross Peters. The expedition is set for 9 December 2018, and, given the time of year, the three will be undertaking a winter climbing skills course first. On the trip, mountaineer Iain Murray will act as their guide.

Francis said: “There’s likely to be snow, ice and tears! (And that’s just on Asif’s part!) I know how challenging these climbs can be – I scaled Mont Blanc back in July and the conditions were bad then, even at the height of summer.

“But it was genuinely the experience of a lifetime. The team and I are now embracing this thrilling new challenge, getting into some training and looking forward to raising some much-needed funds for Resolution.

“As the chair of the local region, I feel it’s important that we continue to raise money and spread the word about what Resolution does in the hope that this will encourage other family lawyers and clients to adopt the same mentality. I hope so much that people will support us and this very worthy cause.”

People can donate via their JustGiving page.

francis george solicitor-advocate is well known for its family law work, and its expert panel of accredited solicitors offers advice on complicated divorce cases.

It has been a Family Panel member for more than a decade, and handles all aspects of family law.

The company was shortlisted in the 2018 Family Solicitor of the Year awards.

About Resolution

Resolution, previously the Solicitors Family Law Association (SFLA), is made up of 6,500 family lawyers and other professionals in England and Wales, who believe in a non-confrontational and constructive approach to family law. The organisation also campaigns to improve the family justice system.

Resolution backs the development of family lawyers through its UK-wide and regional training schemes, through good practice guides and other publications and via its accreditation scheme. Resolution trains and accredits mediators as well, and is unique in its provision of training and support for collaborative lawyers across England and Wales.

ENDS

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Top Swindon solicitors strengthen team with new staff

Leading Swindon solicitor francis george solicitor-advocate has announced it is strengthening its team with new staff.

The firm now has an 18-strong staff team, split across all its departments, encompassing family law, conveyancing, civil litigation, probate, finance and support staff.

Trisha Telles at francis george solicitor-advocateThe newest team member is Trisha Telles, who joined the firm in early October as a conveyancing assistant.

Currently studying LLB law with management studies at Aston University, Telles has joined francis george solicitor-advocate during her placement year, having completed the second year of her studies with a II.1.

The keen reader, cook and traveller previously worked for the Swindon Marriott hotel for over four years and has volunteered for local charities including the CAB and Birmingham’s Personal Support Unit, where she has helped the local community and litigants in person with wide-ranging legal issues.

Francis George, senior partner at francis george solicitor-advocate, said: “We are delighted to welcome Trisha on board, and know that her contribution will do a great deal to strengthen our team.”

The conveyancing department she joins is quality-assured and offers clients a bespoke service tailored to their unique needs, at a competitive price.

Clients of this service report the firm is reliable and quick to work with, and upfront and transparent about pricing and any additional charges.

It’s part of the company’s operation across the commercial and domestic property markets, covering the full scope of property transactions, including the sale itself but also remortgaging, transferring or buying a place.

But the firm is also well-known for its award-winning family law work, and its panel of accredited solicitors is highly experienced and skilled in this area, so is able to advise on complex matrimonial cases.

Francis George has been a Family Panel member for more than a decade and handles all aspects of family law from initial consultation through to court hearings in contested cases.

The team aims to resolve matters through mediation, and with minimal cost and maximum benefit to the client.

Family work earned Francis George a shortlisting in this year’s Family Solicitor of the Year awards, while, in 2017, it took Best Divorce Law Firm in the globally recognised Dispute Resolution Awards.

Additionally, it won Advocacy Solicitor of the Year in 2018.

Francis George Solicitor-Advocate are delighted to expand conveyancing team

Francis George Solicitor-Advocate, is delighted to announce that it is expanding its conveyancing team with the addition of a new Conveyancer. The team have welcomed Emily Peterson, who will provide a welcome and experienced addition to the conveyancing team when she joins the Swindon-based firm.

Emily is joining Francis George Solicitor-Advocate from her previous role at Eric Robinson Solicitors. She studied law at Portsmouth University and obtained a First Class degree, demonstrating her ability and passion for the subject. After graduation, Emily worked at Blake Morgan Solicitors for a year and then built up a further two years of experience at Eric Robinson Solicitors.

Emily joins the team at a time when the housing market is rising and when the firm is experiencing a spike in new business, as clients seek out expert conveyancing services from a trusted local provider with a quality ethos and competitive pricing.

Senior Partner Francis George, at Francis George Solicitor-Advocate said: “We are delighted to bring Emily into our team, where she will provide valuable knowledge, expertise and enthusiasm to boost the existing capabilities of our growing conveyancing function.”

“As a growing firm, we find that customers are extremely keen to buy and sell properties in the Swindon areas and the market is booming. However, if mistakes are made during the legal process it can have a huge impact on costs, completion time and the ability to successfully complete a transaction.”

“Our service is of the utmost quality and designed around the customer, with excellent customer service, a ready pool of expertise and transparent costing for complete peace of mind.”

The Francis George difference

Francis George Solicitor-Advocate offers a full range of conveyancing services for property sales. All clients receive a bespoke and personal service at highly competitive prices. The firm prides itself on reliable and timely service delivery and will provide customers with fixed and certain costing – without hidden extras.

The team deliver expert and quality-assured conveyancing services for domestic and commercial property sales, whether the client is selling, re-mortgaging, purchasing or transferring a property.

Local experts

Francis George Solicitor-Advocate are also local and serve the Swindon geography with local insight and knowledge, and are a dynamic, proactive business which works hard to deliver on behalf of its clients. In fact, the firm enjoys an extremely high degree of repeat business and referral custom thanks to the quality of its offer.

To find out more visit: http://www.francisgeorgesolicitor-advocate.com/conveyancing-commercial-property-solicitor.htm