by Tim O’Dwyer M.A., LL.B
(Following on from “Licensed Conveyancer Corruption Must Be Stopped“, Tim O’Dwyer reports on a lawyer conveyancer’s attempt to attract referrals from real estate agents. Readers are also referred to Tim’s posting Catch 32 On Solicitors’ Independence regarding estate agent referrals to lawyers.)
After the principal of a small suburban law firm sent an email touting his services to several real estate agents, one agent passed it on to a solicitor friend with a caustic comment. That solicitor sent both the email and the comment onto another solicitor who, in turn and disgust, flicked both on to me.
Here is that incredible and appalling email:
“Hello again friends.
Two emails from me in as little as one week, I promise I won’t make a habit of it.
I just wanted to tout my services to you to and ask you to consider recommending our services to your clients. I have thought long and hard about offering you some incentive to do this and what I have come up with is this offer. (You can decide whether it’s a ‘special’ offer or not.)
If you send your clients to me, each time you do so I will give you either a voucher which will entitle you personally (or your client if you wish to pass it on to them) to a 30 percent discount off our normal fee when you buy or sell. That is – one voucher for each referral. The only catch is that the client must not only decide to use our services but the matter must settle. This is because we generally don’t charge a fee if the matter falls over, except in extreme circumstances where the file has given me an ulcer.
To let you in on a little secret – your profession is a major source of referrals for us, and with out blowing my own trumpet ( I don’t know why I said that because I am about to), this is because your profession likes dealing with me…