All 250 solicitors and employees of a legal firm with offices in Leamington and Birmingham have been told to clear their desks and go home after an intervention by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).
An SRA spokesman has said: “The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has intervened into the practice of Guy Barnett, Matthew Montanaro, James Paul Howard, Constantina Nicolaou, Mellonie Elaine Ward, Joanne Warren and Kellie Angie Maguire at Blakemores Solicitors LDP, which has offices in Birmingham and Leamington Spa.
“The practising certificate of Guy Barnett, Matthew Montanaro, James Paul Howard, Constantina Nicolaou, Mellonie Elaine Ward, Joanne Warren and Kellie Angie Maguire have not been suspended.
“It was necessary to intervene in order to protect the interests of clients or former or potential clients, or the interests of the beneficiaries of any trust of which Blakemores Solicitors LDP or any of the partners of Blakemores Solicitors LDP is or was a trustee.
“An intervention means the SRA has closed a firm with immediate effect. We will stop the firm from operating, take possession of all documents and papers held by the firm including clients’ paper, and take possession of all money held by the firm including clients’ money.”
The SRA has appointed an agent to deal with all matters currently held by Blakemores.
The agent will assess all on-going matters and deal with those of greatest need first.
The SRA’s archive team will take control of all documents held by the firm.