Blind Freddy Would Have Spotted The Problems

Posted on April 28, 2007 by | 2 Comments

Tim O'Dwyer M.B., LL.Bby Tim O’Dwyer M.A., LL.B Queensland Solicitor & Consumer Advocate watchdog@argonautlegal.com.au

Solicitor Bruce Simpson is a mate of mine. His little one-man legal office is in Cooroy, just inland from Noosa on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast. He does a fair bit of conveyancing and, as a result, does a fair bit of whinging at home to his wife Kathryn. Like the ever-supportive spouses of so many Queensland conveyancing solicitors, Kathryn has to hear over and over again Bruce’s constant complaints about deceptive agents, flawed contracts, unsatisfactory building inspections and outstanding council approvals and inspections.

Finally school-teacher Kathryn had had a gutful. She sat down at the Simpson PC one night and proceeded to knock out a five-page letter to Queensland’s Sunday Mail. She set out all of Bruce’s complaints and concerns. Then got Bruce to sign it before she posted it next morning. The letter soon landed on the desk of the Sunday Mail’s property writer, Ronnie Girdham. She was stoked and started working on a story.

I came into the picture when Ronnie wanted to interview and photograph of couple Bruce’s conveyancing clients.

Bruce quickly gave Ronnie my name and number with the assurance that I had heaps of willing clients with real estate horror stories.


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2 Comments

  • Paul Tuttlebee says:

    I;m just going through a sale and purchase and disappointed with (a) the number and cost of the various conveyancing searhes (mostly from greedy the local authority) (b) the poor standard of care offered by solicirors. I realise its caveat emptor but surly your own solicitor would endeavour to make sure their clients’ interests are safe guarded. For example, what is the point of doing a local authority search after the cotract is unconditional and something detrimental may be found. (As in my case). Why ask me if there are any easements affecting the proerty I’m buying. How would I know.

    I can go on in this vein but most of it is due to a pathetic conveyancing system, where Government, Local authorities and the Dept of Lands are at fault. The Lawyers and Law Society should fight their corner for a more satisfactory system.

    • Peter Mericka says:

      Remember Paul, you can use a DIY conveyancing kit, and save on all of these things. Responsibility (whether by way of an authority ‘certifying’ the information it provides, or a lawyer remaining responsible for legal advice) costs money. However, if you’re prepared to take full responsibility you needn’t pay anyone anything. Of course, if it all goes pear-shaped you may be up for far more than you had saved.

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