Independent Legal Service



Many types of lending, business and property transactions call for Independent Legal Advice.

The main purpose of ILA is to ensure that all parties to a transaction fully understand their rights and obligations.

ILA’s focus on the explanation of the legal implications of the document that is about to be signed.

ILAs can be relevant for personal and business transactions.

In fact, a need for ILA tends to arise when private life and business matters intersect.

The lender will usually insist that the occupier receives advice about how the transaction affects his or her rights.

Such a request will usually be a precondition of the lending transaction between the lender and the legal owner of the property.

Obinna Baranta

Obinna Baranta


Providing the bank with your form, certificate or letter of independent advice often arises as an incidental transaction.

However, this requirement, if not properly satisfied, can delay the completion of your transaction.

It is essential to obtain timely advice from a solicitor who is experienced in this area.

This area of law is not known to many high street firms and improperly completed occupiers consent forms are usually returned by banks.

  • When a family member occupying a home is required to sign an occupier’s consent form (also known as an occupier’s waiver form) it is important for the occupier to get independent legal advice.
  • where a relative, friend or co-director acts a surety or guarantor of a loan for another person or a company, lenders will usually require that independent legal advice is received by the surety or guarantor.
  • In joint borrower, sole proprietor mortgages (JBSP) banks will always require the second non-proprietor borrower to obtain independent legal advice.
  • A further instance is when the transfer of equity or a transfer of legal ownership in property is proposed from one person to another.
  • Another common scenario is when a change from a single name to joint names on the property register is intended.
  • Client care and attention to detail.
  • High quality independent legal advice.
  • Respect for your data protection and privacy rights.
  • Outstanding technical competence and integrity.
  • Urgent independent legal advice and identity certification, if required. (Home or Office visits within 24 hours across South East & South West England)
  • The option of flexible visiting hours 7 am – 8 pm. (Weekend visits are also available)
  • Written confirmation of our legal advice to you for your records.
  • A VAT invoice for the service payment received from you.
  • Delivery of your certificate of independent legal advice to your nominated bank.
  • Patient, empathetic and courteously delivered answers to any questions you may have about the legal process.
  • Occupiers Waivers Forms (signature and witnessing services for persons who are not the legal owners of properties about to be subject of a mortgage)
  • Settlement Agreements & Compromise Agreements (for Employment Terminations & Redundancies)
  • Advice on Family “Springboard” Mortgages (for mortgage transactions where a non-borrower may have obligations to the lender)
  • Advice on Transfers of Equity in Property (for persons proposing transfer and changes to ownership of equity on the land register)
  • Advice on adding another person as Legal Owner of Property (for persons proposing transfer and changes to names of proprietors on the land register)

It is very important that you fully understand the implications of any of the above transactions.

This is why lenders will often insist on receiving a certificate of advice or form signed by a solicitor.

Mortgage Lenders usually require a Guarantor/Surety in a mortgage/loan to obtain Independent Legal Advice before the Guarantee/Surety becomes acceptable.

Unless you have seen a solicitor, who is qualified to advise on the law and practical implications of your signature on the relevant forms banks may not be sufficiently satisfied that the proposed lending is safe.

Aside from the banks, it is important for you to understand the real benefits and the risks of the proposed consent or assurance you are offering to the bank.

Whether you are taking these steps for your company, your spouse, your partner, your child, your parents, your friend or some other relative, the important thing is that you are well informed and confident about your obligations.

The language, content, and effect of guarantee, surety, indemnity and consent forms are various. The extent of the liability set out in each is usually different.

Our firm’s role is to advise and assist you on the extent of liability that will arise from your signature of the relevant document.

Usually, a person who has received independent legal advice will find it difficult to dispute or challenge the guarantee or surety that was signed by the person after receiving independent legal advice.

This is why our solicitors take time to explain the proposed transaction in simple non-technical language. Lender’s terms, such as: constructive notice; undue influence; vacant possession will be explained by an experienced solicitor.

  • Proof of Identity and proof of address of the person that requires ILA
  • Information about the borrower and our client’s (guarantor/surety’s) relationship to the borrower may also be relevant to enable us to provide appropriate legal advice.
  • Our client’s reason for giving the guarantee or surety may also help us to provide appropriate advice. (You as our client, have every right to make your own decisions and you may choose any options for a variety of personal reasons. We are not financial advisers, however, information about your reasons may raise a legal point that our advice can cover for you).
  • Some background and context of the transaction for which mortgage/loan is taken.
  • Documents and details of mortgage/loan transaction such as mortgage offer/loan agreement; special conditions documents for mortgages; terms & conditions; mortgage deed; deed of guarantee; other supporting documents.
  • Name, telephone number and address of the Solicitors dealing with the relevant mortgage or loan transaction.

If additional documents are required, please provide this promptly to enable our service to you.

Please see each category of ILA for specific cost of our legal services for that type of Independent Legal Advice.

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