RSA now ABS – Insurer to Provide Law Services

From the Gazette, news that insurer RSA (the former Royal and Sun Alliance) is to be authorised as an ABS (alternative business structure) by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. Report here: Insurance Giant RSA

The services themselves will be provided by Parabis Group, who provide similar services to the AA and Saga. It depends on the terms, but it may be that Parabis Group are the real beneficiaries of the deal. Certainly, their strategy of being major providers of outsourced legal services seems to be working.

As ever, watch this space!

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Connells First Estate Agents ABS

From the Solicitors Journal here.

The pace of change quickens, as does the pressure on High Street firms.

The move appears defensive at this stage, given that referral fees are in doubt. One of the interesting points though is that they are authorised by the CLC, a case of regulator shopping.

Co-op Legal Profits Down

Caused by investment spending, according to the Gazette here. Meanwhile, sales were up.

What this shows is that conglomerates like the Co-op can balance lower profits in one area with bigger profits from another business, It is also a reminder that they have an advantage over high street law firms in being able to invest when times are hard.