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  • The dishonesty of a professional can jeopardise insurance cover and limitation of liability under the relevant Professional Standards Scheme.
  • Attempting to cover up a mistake can amount to deceit.

Solicitors must act honestly in all dealings in the course of legal practice. That obligation arises because of the special role solicitors play in the administration of justice. If solicitors and counsel were permitted to be economical with the truth, much of what we take for granted in the conduct of litigation or transactions, would be undermined. Dishonest solicitors also risk the coverage provided under their insurance policy and the Professional Standards Scheme. In some cases, the line between a genuine mistake and dishonest conduct is not immediately clear. There may be hidden risks for practitioners whose conduct could be found to amount to unknowing or inadvertent dishonesty, or where steps are taken to cover up an honest mistake.

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