Law Firm Probate Fraud
Having read an article recently about a former legal executive from an East Sussex law firm, I was astounded to read that despite being placed in charge of Will writing and probate, she had absolutely no formal legal training.
Leanne Harris of Arscotts Solicitors in Hove went on to commit probate fraud; stealing almost £500,000 from clients. It is reported, that this was to maintain a lifestyle many of us can only dream of.
Mrs Harris made transactions between clients’ accounts and wrote several false cheques to obtain the money. She also took advantage of one client, for whom she had been given power of attorney, taking almost £65,000 from the woman.
This case continues to highlight the need for the Will writing industry to be regulated – a move which is absolutely supported by IWC Ltd. Currently, the industry is self-regulated but it is highly unlikely that Mrs Harris would ever have been accepted within any of the industry bodies without having had any formal training.
This is a lesson to all of us – when looking for a Will writing and probate expert, always check that they are a member of an appropriate organisation.