Change of solicitor
Change of solicitor

The following Dispute Resolution guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Change of solicitor
  • Why change of solicitor notice is important—party's address for service
  • When to give notice of change of solicitor
  • Procedure for changing solicitor
  • Ceasing to act for a client
  • Applying for an order that another party's solicitor ceases to act
  • Ceasing to act—LSC funded client or assisted person
  • Handing over papers to the new solicitor
  • Case management implications of change of solicitor
  • Additional issues following termination of a retainer

Why change of solicitor notice is important—party's address for service

The provisions relating to change of solicitor are important because, where a party's address for service is given as being that party's solicitor's business address, that solicitor will be considered to be acting for that party until the provisions in CPR 42 and CPR PD 42 have been complied with (CPR 42.1(1)). One of the practical realities of this is that a party's solicitor's business address remains that party's address for service until:

  1. notice of change is filed and served on every other party, or

  2. the court makes an order that the solicitor has ceased to act

Note: the meaning of 'solicitor' for the purposes of CPR 42 is set out in CPR 6.2(d) and includes any person authorised to conduct litigation under the Legal Services Act 2007.

When to give notice of change of solicitor

Notice is required when:

  1. there is a change of solicitor

  2. a party appoints a solicitor having previously acted in person

  3. a party who was previously represented by a solicitor intends to act in person

Procedure for changing solicitor

  1. serve notice of change of solicitor (Form N434) on every other party. Note: where a party intends to change their solicitor or act in person having previously been represented, they will also have