LPA certificate provider employee of company

I’d be interested to hear if other members of the forum have had issues with the OPG rejecting LPAs recently on the basis of the certificate provider being an employee of a solicitor’s company?

Our firm is established as a limited company. Rather than having partners as in a traditional firm, the owners of the business are shareholder-directors. The company employs solicitors.

In the past, we have had no issue with the situation where shareholder-directors of the business are named as attorneys in LPAs and the certificate within the LPAs is given by a solicitor employed by the company. We took the view that, as the certificate provider was not an employee of the named attorney, this was acceptable within the legislation and we have had such LPAs registered by the OPG without any query.

Recently, the OPG has declined to register such LPAs, but we have not been able to find out why they have changed their practice. Is anyone aware of a recent case that has had an impact on who can be a certificate provider?

Rachel Baseley
Wake Smith Solicitors Ltd

We have the same corporate structure but always get someone else to act as a certificate provider rather than a solicitor employee.

Vicky Jones
Lawson West Solicitors Ltd

In section 10 (certificate provider) of the LPA form, at the bottom under restrictions it states that the certificate provider must not be …

the donor’s or an attorney’s business partner
the donor’s or an attorney’s employee

Andre Davidson

I agree with Andre, it was always the case an employee could not give the certificate.

Iain Cameron
Acer Legal

I am self-employed. I provide locum cover. I came across the problem a few years back and since then I do not act as certificate provider where the partners are appointed as attorneys (or replacement attorneys).

Sharon Edelstyn
Phoenix Legal Group