Many Seller's Lawyers Are Brought in Too Late

The Journal (Newcastle, England), November 19, 2003 | Go to article overview

Many Seller's Lawyers Are Brought in Too Late


What can be more frustrating to a seller than to be told by his lawyer within days of striking a deal there are going to be delays because the lawyer needs the title deeds, various leases or other documents are missing, or there is an error on the title.

Even if this is not the case, once the seller's lawyers have sent the contract and title to the buyer's lawyers, the buyer's lawyers will undertake their due diligence investigations of the property. Most seller's lawyers will know what form that due diligence will take but rarely provide the information "up front" with the contract. This is because they are brought into the transaction too late.

Richard Freeman- Wallace, head of commercial property at Watson Burton said: "It's a wise move on the part of the seller to bring in lawyers to investigate and iron out any difficulties well in advance of the property being marketed.

"When a buyer is found, his lawyer can be provided with all the information he needs, without having to ask for it. This is especially so where the seller's lawyer has not been involved in either buying the property in the first place or in its letting. …

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