Scots wanting to get divorced, realise their dream of starting their own business or prepare for the future in 2019 are being urged to use a solicitor to help things go smoothly.

The call comes as new research carried out by ComRes on our behalf shows that 41% of Scottish adults have used a solicitor in the past five years and 93% of those consider their solicitor to be trustworthy.

The survey, which questioned 1020 Scottish adults aged 18 and over, also found that 92% agree that solicitors are educated and trained to a high standard, with 34% saying they strongly agree. That solicitors work hard to help people with difficult situations was agreed by 81%.

Additionally, 90% of Scottish adults who have used a solicitor in the last five years say they were satisfied with the service they received, with more than half (56%) saying they were very satisfied.

Alison Atack, President of the Law Society of Scotland said, “Scottish solicitors are here to help people often at the most difficult or most exciting time of their lives. They will guide you through whatever life-changing decision you have taken.

“For many people, New Year is about making bold decisions. It might be time to use a solicitor, possibly for the first time. Many solicitors report a rise in January in the number of people seeking advice on getting a divorce. Making a will, arranging a power of attorney, buying a home or setting up a business could also be the step that people are ready to take.”

The majority of Scottish adults questioned (73%) feel they understand the services that a solicitor can provide. When it comes to affordability, 36% of Scottish adults who have not used a solicitor in the last five years feel confident they could afford one if they needed to, whereas 61% of those who have used a solicitor in the last five years feel confident they can afford to use one. This suggests that some people misunderstand the reality of how much consulting with a solicitor might cost.

Alison Atack added, “To avoid nasty surprises, the public should ensure they are using a solicitor, rather than just someone calling themselves a ‘lawyer’ or ‘legal advisor’. Solicitors are highly trained and regulated. This means that in the unlikely event of something going wrong, the client is protected. This is not the case if those people offering advice are not solicitors.”

All Scottish solicitors can be found on the Law Society of Scotland’s ‘Find a Solicitor’ website.

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