The IoP is operating business as usual during whilst observing government guidelines by working remotely. We understand that our paralegal members are concerned about the impact remote working may have on their businesses, especially for those who usually meet clients face to face to take instructions.
During this period of uncertainty, we need to try and offer the same service but undertake it in a different way.
Here are some of our top tips on what you should do when taking instructions remotely:
1. Capacity - you must ensure you are satisfied that the client has capacity. Have a checklist of questions and make sure you record this accurately. Using video calling would provide an extra level of protection so that you can confirm that the client is who they say they are. Use photo ID to check and request copies are sent by secure means. Use a questionnaire to gain information from the client prior to a call or video meeting.Put systems in place such as Skype, WhatsApp, Zoom etc and if this is not possible try Facetime etc
Remember that if you are acting for more than one client that you check ID of both clients.
2. Undue Influence - you should record information about anyone else who is present whilst taking instructions from your client. You should specifically ask the client who is present and record this information.
3. Transferring Documents Securely - use secure software such as WeTransfer especially when sending personally identifiable information to clients.
4. Original Documents - ensure that you receive original documents, preferably signed with ink for your records after the event.
5. Terms of Business - ensure these are up to date to take into account remote working.
If you have any tips to share with members, then please comment below.
At the IoP we will do all we can to support our members and would like to thank you for your continued support.