Penrith Building Society Conveyancing Panel Information

BSA Designator: Penrith Building Society
Jurisdiction: England and Wales

The information on this page is designed to keep solicitors and licensed conveyancers abreast of latest requirements changes by Penrith Building Society and to assist in remaining on the Penrith Building Society Approved Conveyancing Solicitors.

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Penrith Building Society Solicitor Panel Assistance:

What are the Penrith Building Society conveyancing panel criteria?
Unlike the CML the Building Society Mortgage Instructions deal with this. Section A.12 states ‘In order to act on our behalf your firm or company must be a member of our conveyancing panel provided we are a society that operates one – see specific requirements for details of our arrangements. The Special Requirements state:

Firm must have minimum of 3 partners/principals and provide copy of the acting partner's practicing certificate and confirmation of professional indemnity insurance. Contact point see above.

You must also comply with the terms and conditions of your Penrith Building Society solicitor panel appointment.

Is it true that the Law Society has advised that firms check their status on the Penrith Building Society conveyancing panel?
The Scottish Law Society has suggested that solicitors should check their lender panel status prior to accepting client instructions to act. The advice is lender-agnostic as it does not relate specifically to solicitors on the Penrith Building Society conveyancing panel. The recommendation arises from the practice of a number of mortgage lenders who remove solicitors from their panels without prior notice as part of their panel management system, which can lead to some solicitors discovering this only once instructed. This is sensible advice as a client finding out midway through a transaction that their lawyer is not on the approved lender panel is very frustrating and can lead to complaints. Many online consumer forums contain posts where someone is complaining about finding that their lawyer is not on a lender conveyancing panel. Such forums include moneysavingexpert.com
I am hearing that agents are using online checkers to see if a firm is on a lender panel. Why?
Many estate agents are suffering if their clients start out on the conveyancing process having appointed a conveyancer who is not on the panel with the purchaser’s chosen lender. Many conveyancing firms are only discovering when they begin working on a case that they are no longer able to work with that lender. Given the inevitable resultant delays in the transaction the chances of an abortive deal increases dramatically. in the circumstances there is understandable anguish on the part of the estate agent as a result of the lost time should the client have to change solicitors lawyers.
Do you have any idea what Lenders such as Penrith Building Society are asking for when it comes to applying to be on their approved solicitor list?
Each lender has different criteria. We do not hold specific requirements relating to the questions raised as part of the application to be on the Penrith Building Society conveyancing panel. Typically lenders need to have full knowledge of a firm including (but not limited to):
  • Full complaints history for each conveyancing solicitor
  • Structure of firm and, where applicable, its group
  • Charge registration history
  • Full disciplinary history for each licensed conveyancer
  • List of all those who fund the firm, including non-lawyers if applicable
  • List of all those staff who work within the conveyancing team
  • Automated alerting to inform lenders when there is a fundamental change to the firm e.g. change of name
  • House price discrepancies (declared to lender vs. registered at Land Registry)
  • Whether any lender has ever made a claim against the firm’s PII cover
  • Full career history for each licensed conveyancer including registration date with Council of Licensed Conveyancers
A recent SRA survey reveals that three quarters of solicitors have been removed or threatened with removal from a lender conveyancing panel. Penrith Building Society and other building societies have restricted their panel over the years. Why?
The feeling from lenders generally (we can not speak for Penrith Building Society specifically), is that for too long solicitors have concentrated on their duty of care to their purchasing client, and have paid scant attention to the duty they owe to the lender, whom they conveniently forget is also their client.

Looking from the lenders’ perspective, it has to be said that there are pressures to encourage smaller panels. The Financial Services Authority regards the open panel system as a major contributor to mortgage fraud and negligence cases, and has been leaning on lenders to move to proactive panel management, which is more expensive the larger the panel. Hence it is becoming more common for lenders to charge fees, and/or require extensive form-filling, from would-be panel members

Penrith Building Society and other BSA lenders are in varying stages of reviewing their approach to vetting firms on their conveyancing panels, to ensure their ongoing exposure to unsuitable firms is reduced.

My firm is on the Penrith Building Society conveyancing panel. I am dealing with Penrith Building Society mortgage on a purchase. My borrower client is asking not to disclose an issue to Penrith Building Society. What do I do in this conflict situation?
When a solicitor is acting for both Penrith Building Society and borrower there is potential for conflicts to arise. You owe duties to both clients. All information received by you from your client is confidential and cannot be disclosed without the client’s consent.

In your situation, if the purchaser will not consent to the information being passed on to the lender, the solicitor must cease to act for Penrith Building Society and it may well be prudent for you to cease to act for the purchaser as well. You must not inform Penrith Building Society of the reason for termination of the retainer over and above the fact that a conflict has arisen. The fact that you can no longer act should alert even the most somnambulistic of lenders that something is wrong with the borrower and/or purchase. The fact that you have disinstructed yourself should not affect your Penrith Building Society conveyancing panel status.

I rarely receive a copy of a valuation from a lender these days. Does the extent of my Penrith Building Society conveyancing panel obligations extend to checking the valuation details where I am acting on a purchase with Penrith Building Society as the Mortgagee?
You have a number of obligations in this regard which are to be followed if you wish to comply with your lender client’s instructions as set out in the BSA Mortgage Instructions. (a) You must take reasonable steps to verify that there are no discrepancies between the description of the property as compared to their old address.
What lender panels do you receive the most questions about?
BSA lenders do not come within the top 20 lenders in terms of frequency of questions. The most popular lender panels in terms of questions are as follows:

Recent Changes Include

# Date Assoc. Changes Related To
C.19 02/08/2018 BSA
C.12 13/03/2017 BSA
D.34 24/11/2015 BSA
C.12 24/11/2015 BSA
B.22 10/02/2014 BSA
D.34 10/02/2014 BSA
D.55 10/02/2014 BSA
E.12 10/02/2014 BSA
C.12 10/02/2014 BSA
D.14 01/08/2012 BSA

Last update 17/01/2020

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