Axiom: SRA Intervention | Gordons LLP
Friday 10th November 2023
What has happened to Axiom Ince Ltd?
Axiom Ince Ltd (‘Axiom Ince’) was closed by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) on 3 October 2023. This is called an intervention.
Axiom Ince was comprised of various law firms and offices, and more detail is set out below.
The SRA has appointed other law firms (intervention agents), to deal with the closure.
Contact details, and information about which part of the intervention they are dealing with, are listed below.
Former Axiom DWFM offices (Edgware, London, Birmingham, Bristol, Swindon, Walthamstow, Wanstead)
Please contact Gordons LLP on 0113 227 0394 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Former Ince & Co offices
Please contact Shakespeare Martineau on 0300 247 2470 or email@example.com
Former Plexus Legal LLP offices
Please contact Stephensons on 0333 344 4883 or PlexusIntervention@stephensons.co.uk
Information for former clients
What does the intervention mean?
If you were a client of Axiom Ince, they can no longer act for you. You will need to find another lawyer to act. The intervention agents are not acting for you.
Finding new legal representation
You can find a lawyer on the Law Society’s Find a Solicitor site, or by calling the Law Society on 020 7320 5650 Monday to Friday from 09:00 to 17:00.
If you need a legal aid lawyer, you can find one on the Legal Aid Agency’s site. If you have a live legal aid certificate, we can only send your file to another legal aid lawyer.
What’s happened to my file?
The SRA has collected all clients’ files for ongoing transactions which were in the firms’ offices at the time of the intervention.
If one of the firms have been acting for you on something which is ongoing and your file has been recovered, the intervention agents or the SRA will write to tell you and ask where you want your file to be sent. That could be back to you, or to new legal representatives.
Getting your matter resolved quickly
You or your new lawyer should let our intervention agents know quickly where you want your file to be sent as there might be important time limits. You or your new lawyer can let the intervention agents know by email.
You might be able to help your new solicitors to make progress for you without your file by sending them any correspondence/documents you received before the intervention. They may also be able to get information directly from any other solicitors/organisations involved in the case.
If your file was an electronic file, the intervention agents are working to enable these files to be sent by secure email/downloaded from a document portal. If you have any urgent queries about an electronic file held for you, please contact the relevant intervention agent. They will do all they can to help.
What if my former Axiom Ince solicitor has moved to a new law firm and I gave my consent for them to take my file with them?
Please speak to your solicitor at their new firm first of all. If they have not got all the relevant files/documents they should let the intervention agents know, who can send any other files recovered relating to the matter to them.
What do I need to do if I want my files sending to a new lawyer?
The intervention agents need your consent to do this. You can email consent to them. Please include contact details of your new lawyer.
If there are two or more of you named as clients, you all/both need to agree and tell the intervention agent.
What do I need to do if I want my files sending to me?
The intervention agents need your consent to do this. You can email consent to them. Please include the full address to which the file should be sent, and send a copy of your identification (e.g. copy passport/driving licence).
If there are two or more of you named as clients, you all/both need to agree and tell the intervention agents.
It won’t cost you anything to have your documents sent to you or your new lawyer.
What has happened to old/archived files, wills and deeds?
All old/archived files, wills and deeds held in storage by the firms are being collected and indexed by the SRA. This is likely to take several months. If you want to get hold of old/archived files please complete a file request form. You will also need to provide a form of identification.
Axiom Ince should have been holding money for me. What should I do?
When the SRA closes a law firm, it takes possession of any money the firm held.
If you believe that the firm was holding your money you may be able to apply to the SRA Compensation Fund. As it is a discretionary fund, applications are considered using the criteria set out in the rules.
The rules include eligibility criteria, the maximum grant that can be made and the basis that a grant can be made. To help the Compensation Fund consider your application, it is helpful to attach evidence to show the money paid to the firm, such as a bank statement. Further information might be needed to understand the transaction and to apply the fund’s rules.
The SRA is expecting a high volume of applications to the fund. Any applications should be sent to this dedicated email address Axiomclaims@sra.org.uk
Find out more about the SRA Compensation Fund. This includes information about who is eligible to apply. If you are not eligible you may wish to get legal advice about your options.
How do I complain about the service I’ve received from Axiom Ince?
If you want to complain – or already have a complaint in progress – about the quality of service you have received from Axiom Ince you should contact the Legal Ombudsman.
Email the Ombudsman via firstname.lastname@example.org, or call them on 0300 555 0333.
Examples of complaints the Legal Ombudsman can look at include:
- Delay: no clear reason for the work taking longer than expected.
- Unclear billing and costs information: the costs were unclear or different from the original estimate.
- Poor communication: the process wasn’t well explained, there wasn’t enough information for you to make an informed choice, or you weren’t kept updated about the progress of your case.
The SRA and the intervention agents are not representatives of Axiom Ince so will not be handling or responding to such complaints.
Information for employees
I was an employee of Axiom Ince. What can I do?
We understand this is a difficult time for you.
The intervention agents’ role is however solely focused on the protection of clients and assisting them in whatever way we can. The intervention agents are not representatives of or successor practices to Axiom Ince. They are therefore unable to deal with issues relating to your employment. You may wish to seek independent legal advice. The links below may also help:
If you were a trainee at the firm, the Law Society has useful information for you.
I was an employee of Axiom Ince and am continuing to act for my former client at a new firm.
If you are continuing to act for your former clients at a new firm and took files with clients’ consent before the intervention, please email details of the firm you used to work for and details of the files (client name/matter description) to the relevant intervention agent. This will help the intervention agents to effectively direct any enquiries they receive about those files.
If you need your clients’ files from the intervention agents, please email your clients’ written consent to transfer their files to you to the relevant intervention agent.
Information for creditors
Separately from the intervention, Neil Bennett, Alex Cadwallader & Andrew Poxon were appointed as Joint Administrators of Axiom Ince on 26 October 2023.
Details of the Administration and how this differs from the intervention can be found here: Leonard Curtis appointed Joint Administrators of Axiom Ince Limited.
Creditors should contact email@example.com.
How can I get more information?
- speak to the relevant intervention agent (see contact details above).
- email the relevant intervention agent (see contact details above)
- find out more about interventions on the SRA’s website.