Frequently asked questions relating to the Stafford Railway Building Society Solicitor Panel
from members of the public
Can you please explain the reason why all UK lawyers aren't included on the Stafford Railway Building Society Solicitor panel?
Pre- 2008 most lenders had an appetite for risk which was higher than today. The Financial Services Authority in 2010 conducted a thematic review into mortgage fraud which concluded: know the conveyancing solicitors that you are dealing with. Consequently, lenders have regularly sought more information from law firms about their operations and the individuals who work for them and set certain criteria such a completing on a minimum number of transactions. Many firms that have been excluded from lender panels have 100% healthy track record, no complaints and no claims and didn't just 'dabble' in conveyancing. Such firms were never going to meet the criteria of volume of transactions the lenders required.
My partner and I intend to remortgage our maisonette with Stafford Railway Building Society. We have a son 18 who lives with us. The solicitor on the Stafford Railway Building Society conveyancing panel has asked us to disclose any adults other than ourselves who reside at the property. The solicitor has now sent a form for our son to sign, giving up any rights in the event that the apartment is forfeited by the lender. I have two questions (1) Is this document specific to the Stafford Railway Building Society conveyancing panel as he did not need to sign this form when we bought 3 years ago (2) In signing this form is our son in any way compromising his right to inherit the property?
On the face of it your lawyer has done nothing wrong as it is established procedure for any occupier who is aged 17 or over to sign the necessary Consent Form, which is purely to state that any rights he has in the property are postponed and secondary to Stafford Railway Building Society .This is solely used to protect the Stafford Railway Building Society if the property were re-possessed so that in such circumstances, your son would be legally obliged to leave.
It does not impact your son’s right to inherit the apartment. Please note that if your son were to inherit and the mortgage in favour of Stafford Railway Building Society had not been discharged, he would be liable to take over the loan or pay it off, but other than that, there is nothing stopping him from keeping the property in accordance with your will or the rules of intestacy.
Do I have to pop into the offices of the Stafford Railway Building Society conveyancing panel solicitor to sign the mortgage deed? If so, I will appoint a lawyer who conducts conveyancing in Liverpool
so that I can pop in to their offices when needed.
As opposed to twenty years ago, most lenders no longer require their conveyancing panel solicitor to witness the borrowers signature. You will still be obliged to provide ID Documents and there are still distinct advantages to using a local solicitor, in your case a conveyancing solicitor in Liverpool
I was scheduled to move into my first house last Friday. My lawyer’s firm is on the Stafford Railway Building Society conveyancing panel but has moved offices 8 weeks ago and had not informed Stafford Railway Building Society of their new address. Stafford Railway Building Society is now refusing to release my funds until such time as their systems are up to date with the correct details.
This is as unusual as it is unlucky. The majority of lender Terms of Conveyancing Panel Appointment specifically oblige the solicitor to inform the lender of an address change. Your solicitor needs to treat this with the utmost urgency. Do speak with or register your concern with the senior partner (assuming he or she is not your direct lawyer). Most lenders would be reasonable in this situation and expedite the resolution of this issue. It may be prudent to enlist the help of your local Stafford Railway Building Society branch or your mortgage broker to see if they can help.
In what circumstances might Stafford Railway Building Society amend or withdraw their mortgage offer?
Banks and Building Societies such as Stafford Railway Building Society can revoke their mortgage offer although this is unusual. should Stafford Railway Building Society withdraw their offer they may or may not inform you or the lawyer as to the reasons why. There are many potential reasons but here are a number of examples:
Where the purchase price and borrowers direct contribution differ to details on the mortgage application form completed by the borrower
Where to proceed with the Mortgage offer would be unlawful
Where the lender is on notice of a restriction or a right of pre-emption which is not at market value
Where the Lender’s right to possession is fettered in some way
If the lender reasonably believe that the applicant, borrower, mortgagor or guarantor is insolvent or is about to become insolvent or has or will have a petition presented or if any one or all enter into any arrangement with their creditors generally or if any one or all should suffer a material change in their financial circumstances
After much negotiation I have agreed a price on an apartment. My financial adviser suggested a solicitor I paid an upfront payment of 150. Soon after the conveyancers contacted me sheepishly admitting that they were not on the Stafford Railway Building Society conveyancing panel. Am I right in thinking that I should be due a refund?
You should be able to recover this from the law firm if they were not on the Stafford Railway Building Society panel. They should have asked at the outset which lender you were obtaining a mortgage with. An important lesson to readers of this site is to check that the lawyers are on the appropriate lender panel.
I had an offer accepted on an apartment on the 7th February 2014, valuation was booked 4 days after, received a clean bill of health. Property lawyer retained, so all that was missing was my mortgage offer. Having made daily calls to Stafford Railway Building Society and chasing them on my offer I have now been told that my offer will not be issued unless the lawyer is on the Stafford Railway Building Society conveyancing panel. Can the lender hold off the offer?
Mortgage companies tend not to not issue a mortgage until they have details of a lawyer on their panel. It can take a few weeks for Stafford Railway Building Society to deal with your lawyers application to be on the Stafford Railway Building Society conveyancing panel. There's no guarantee that your solicitors will be accepted.