The Legal Services Board (LSB) today announces the appointment of Sarah Chambers as the new Chair of the Legal Services Consumer Panel (the Consumer Panel).
Ms Chambers succeeds Dr Jane Martin, who has stepped down from her role to join the Office for Legal Complaint.
Interim Chair of the Legal Services Board, Dr Helen Phillips said:
“I am delighted to announce the appointment of Sarah as the new Chair of the Legal Services Consumer Panel. She will find a Consumer Panel resolutely committed to making sure that the interests of consumers are put right at the heart of legal services regulation.
This appointment demonstrates the importance the LSB continues to attach to the advice it receives from the Consumer Panel and the invaluable challenge function it plays in respect of the wider legal services sector.
I would also like to thank Dr Martin for her contribution to the Legal Services Consumer Panel during her time with it and wish her well in her new role.”
- The Legal Services Act 2007 (the Act) required the LSB to establish a Consumer Panel to represent the interests of consumers. Members are appointed by the LSB with the approval of the Lord Chancellor.
- Sarah Chambers – Sarah is an expert in regulation, competition and consumer policy, with leadership experience at Board level. Sarah was formerly, Chief Executive of PostComm (2004-2008), and has wide-ranging experience as a senior civil servant in various roles (Sarah was Director of Consumer & Competition Policy, Department of Business, Innovation and Skills from 2008 to 2011, and Director of Renewable Energy Deployment at the Department of Energy and Climate Change from 2011 to 2013).Until recently, Sarah was a Non-Executive Director of the Competition & Markets Authority, and holds a number of other public appointments, consultancy and trustee roles – including Commissioner of the Electoral Commission, Judicial Appointments Commission Panellist (appointing judges at all levels); Civil Aviation Authority Consumer Panel Member; Chair of the Applications Panel of the Renewable Energy Consumer Code.Past appointments include: Member of the Qualifications Committee of the Bar Standards Board (2012 – 17) and Independent Director at the Payments Council (2014 – 15). Sarah was Trustee of Zamcog, a charity supporting a children’s home and school for orphans and vulnerable children in a rural part of Zambia between 2013 and 2018.
- Her appointment is for a three year term from 1 May 2018 to 30 April 2021. It carries a non-pensionable remuneration of £15,000 for at least 30 days work per year.
- Details of other members of the Consumer Panel can be found here.
- These appointments were made in accordance with the Code of Practice of the Commissioner for Public Appointments.
- The Legal Services Act 2007 (the Act) created the LSB as a new regulator with responsibility for overseeing the regulation of legal services in England and Wales. The new regulatory regime became active on 1 January 2010.
- The LSB oversees ten approved regulators, which in turn regulate individual legal practitioners. The approved regulators, designated under Part 1 of Schedule 4 of the 2007 Act, are the Law Society, the Bar Council, the Master of the Faculties, the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives, the Council for Licensed Conveyancers, the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys, the Chartered Institute of Trade Mark Attorneys, the Association of Costs Lawyers, the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.In addition, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland is an approved regulator for probate activities only but does not currently authorise anyone to offer this service.
- As at 1 April 2017, the legal profession in England and Wales comprised 148,690 solicitors, 15,281 barristers, 6,809 chartered legal executives and 5,958 other individuals operating in other areas of the legal profession such as conveyancing. The UK legal sector turnover was £31 billion per annum (2016) which is up 19% in cash terms since 2012. For more information see here.