Guidance related to Rule B4: Closing of Files

There is a professional duty upon a solicitor to advise a client in writing that the file will be closed in the absence of his instructions within a specific period of time.

This is clearly sound common sense in the situation where the solicitor is sitting waiting for further instructions. There must be some way of bringing the matter to a close so that the filing cabinet can be cleared of dormant files, accounts can be rendered either to the client or SLAB and both solicitor and client know the matter has come to an end. However there are cases such as old conveyancing transactions after the delivery of the Search and other cases where the matter is obviously concluded where the duty is not the same.

In cases where the matter in which the solicitor was instructed has not come to an obvious and natural conclusion there is a duty upon a solicitor to advise the client in writing that the file will be closed in the absence of his instructions within a specific period of time.

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