CILEx Regulation opens door to alternative business structures

CILEx Regulation is delighted to announce that it can now accept applications to license Alternative Business Structures (ABSs). David Pope, Entity Authorisation Manager at CILEx Regulation, explores the benefits of ABS for startups and switchers.

More choice on how you structure your firm

As well as offering consumers more choice, setting up as an ABS can offer new and existing firms more flexibility. Law firms can involve people who bring additional experience and skills, while firms in other sectors can set up a standalone legal business where legal services complement their core offering.

A traditional law firm is owned solely by lawyers, while an ABS has non-lawyers in its ownership and management. It’s unlikely that consumers would be able (or need) to tell the difference between them.

At CILEx Regulation, we’ll continue to authorise by legal specialism and will do the same for ABS. We’ll continue to provide the same level of protection to consumers. And we’ll continue to help firms make sure they’re ready for business on day one – with everything in place to concentrate on your new clients. Adding ABS licensing simply offers firms more flexibility and the potential for more innovation.

Why choose an ABS?

An ABS means that a firm can bring external investment, advice and knowledge into their ownership. Adding finance or marketing expertise in particular can help a firm develop and extend its client base.

ABS increase opportunities not only for CILEx members and practitioners, but also offers a choice of regulator to other providers of legal services. We’re already receiving enquiries from solicitors interested in regulation of their new firms.

Going forward

CILEx Regulation welcomes enquiries from specialist firms looking at ABS as an option, and from established non-legal businesses that are interested in adding complementary legal services.

ABS may also provide a route for unregulated businesses doing unreserved work to seek regulation to conduct reserved legal work.

CILEx Regulation’s community of thriving firms shows the value of a rigorous, supportive and responsive approach to regulation. We look forward to welcoming alternative business structures to that community.

For an informal discussion about starting up, switching or simply want to know more about ABSs, contact Giles Probert on 01234 845 759 or at giles.probert@cilexregulation.org.uk


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