The Solicitors’ Code of Conduct

What is The Solicitors’ Code of Conduct

It is a set of rules and regulations giving guidance on the standard of professional conduct to all Solicitors in England & Wales, registered European lawyers, registered foreign lawyers and other recognised bodies. These rules and regulations are very specific and give guidance on the Solicitors standards of behaviour or conduct when carrying out their duty of care to their clients. It is therefore very important to be aware of those rules. Failure to follow those rules by your solicitor may result in you suing him for Professional Negligence. You may also decide to complain to Legal Complaints Service. Solicitors are bound by those rules and there is no excuse for them to fail to follow them. The code contains guidance to each rule these however do not form a part of the code and are not mandatory themselves. Understanding those rules may help you control your case and the progress that your solicitor is taking throughout this transaction.

What rules are contained in the conduct

The code of conduct consists of 25 specific rules which are designed to control everyday job of a solicitor. Rule 1 contains 6 core duties which preserve justice, the rule of law. They keep an eye on solicitors to act with integrity, independence, in the best interests of clients. They preserve a good standard of service and public confidence.

The rule of law

The common law of England & Wales, statutes, and case law together form the legal system of England and Wales.


A solicitor must act in accordance with the rules and still together with his fellow colleagues, the court.

Public Confidence

A solicitor is a professional and other public bodies must trust him to put their trust in him.

Rule 2

Rule 2 was designed to maintain good relations between the Solicitor and the client. This rule gives guidance on accepting clients instructions and in what circumstances can a solicitor refuse instructions. (e.g. where it would constitute breach of conduct, duress or undue influence, where instructions are given by someone else not a client and where a solicitor lacks competence) A solicitor is always under an obligation to  fulfil clients objectives therefore must keep his client informed of all steps he is taking or any costs and contingency fees  in relation to any transaction he was instructed under.

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For more information on:

  • Client Care Letter
  • Contingency fees
  • Rule 3
  • Rule 4
  • Confidentiality and disclosure
  • Rule 11
  • Other rules