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Law Management Section

FAQ: Forming off-site contracts via email

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The Law Society’s Practice Advice Service answers a question on forming off-site contracts via email. 

I occasionally enter into contracts with consumers away from my office. I am aware of the client information I am obliged to provide under the Consumer Contracts Regulations, when forming a retainer off-premises with a consumer. My client has requested that I send all written communications by email. Will this satisfy the Regulations? 

This area of practice is subject to the Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013 (the ‘Regulations’). If the statutory information is given in relation to an off-premises contract, under Regulation 10 it must be given on paper or, if the consumer agrees, on another ‘durable medium’ and it must be legible.

A durable medium is defined in Regulation 5 as ’paper or email, or any other medium that:

  • allows information to be addressed personally to the recipient,
  • enables the recipient to store the information in a way accessible for future reference for a period that is long enough for the purposes of the information, and
  • allows the unchanged reproduction of the information stored.’

For further information, please see the Law Society’s Practice Note on the Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013 and Who owns the file

This FAQ is compiled by the Law Society’s Practice Advice Service telephone 0207 320 5675. Comments relating to it should be sent to Mrs Anjali Mouelhi, Practice Advice Service Manager, The Law Society, 113 Chancery Lane, London WC2A 1PL. Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information in the FAQ, it does not constitute legal advice and cannot be relied upon as such. The Law Society does not accept any responsibility for liabilities arising as a result of reliance upon the information given.

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