Marson, James and Ferris, Katy (2008) Advisors v Legal Services Commission: Which is the Appropriate Measure of Quality Advice? Web Journal of Current Legal Issues (WEB JCLI) (4). ISSN 1360-1326

The not-for-profit (NfP) advice sector plays a vital role in ensuring the vulnerable and those in need of advice and representation have recourse to accessible, informed and quality advisors. Given the increase in social rights through legislative action and regulated benefits, the need for advocates who can assist individuals without the means to seek private legal advice is paramount in ensuring justiciable problems are resolvable. To secure that advisory agencies are providing 'quality' advice to their clients, the Government, through the Legal Services Commission (LSC), established a system of regulation. This involved State-funded agencies applying for accreditation through a system of 'Quality Marks' demonstrating the centres' level of expertise in areas of advice. This paper, from a wider study, considers how quality of advice may be identified, and undertakes this through examination of 'quality' from both the advisor's and the LSC's perspective. It concludes that quality may be a feature of advice that is not suitable to evaluation through audits and paper trails. Whilst well intentioned, attempting to offer a degree of transparency to advice and justifying public funding, clients are largely unaware of the 'Quality Mark' system and advisors have considered such regulation as a movement away from the philosophical underpinnings and ethos of the NfP sector.

FerrisAdvisorsmarson4.pdf - Published Version

Download (137kB) | Preview


Downloads per month over past year

Add to AnyAdd to TwitterAdd to FacebookAdd to LinkedinAdd to PinterestAdd to Email