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Wither to or not: Acting for both parties - a good idea, or a recipe for disaster?

Legal Futuresreports that 'leading private client firm' Withers has launched a new service for couples wanting an amicable separation without instructing separate lawyers. As Legal Futures points out, this is not the first such service, and I understand that at least one other firm is planning to introduce something similar.

I realise that law firms are keen to find new revenue streams, but is this a good idea, or a recipe for disaster?

To an old-timer like me the whole idea of acting for two parties in a divorce or separation is anathema. After all, the SRA Code of Conduct (paragraph 6.2) is clear enough: You do not act in relation to a matter or a particular aspect of it if you have a conflict of interest (i.e. where your separate duties to act in the best interests of two or more clients in relation to the same or a related matters conflict) or a significant risk of such a conflict in relation to that matter or aspect of it.

Surely, that is the end of the matter? Isn't …

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