About Us 

The Legal Services Board (LSB) is the oversight regulator for legal services, with a jurisdiction covering England and Wales. Although the LSB is a non-departmental public body sponsored by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ), it is independent from government and the legal profession.  The LSB was established by the Legal Services Act 2007. It has been in existence since 1 January 2008 with full statutory powers from 1 January 2009.  It is a unique body, whose role embraces economic, professional and consumer protection regulation.

Working with the ten approved regulators, the LSB is responsible for advancing the public interest in the legal services market by encouraging innovation and competition. The aim is to enhance access to justice and secure a better deal for consumers, whilst also ensuring the highest standards of competence, conduct and service in the legal profession for the benefit of both individuals and the public as a whole. It is also responsible for appointing the Office for Legal Complaints (OLC), and ensuring it administers an effective ombudsman scheme to deal with consumers’ complaints about legal services.

The LSB’s focus is to deliver regulatory objectives set out in the Legal Services Act 2007.

These are:
  • protecting and promoting the public interest
  • supporting the constitutional principle of the rule of law
  • improving access to justice
  • protecting and promoting the interests of consumers
  • promoting competition in the provision of services in the legal sector
  • encouraging an independent, strong, diverse and effective legal profession
  • increasing public understanding of citizens legal rights and duties
  • promoting and maintaining adherence to the professional principles of independence and integrity; proper standards of work; observing the best interests of the client and the duty to the court; and maintaining client confidentiality
  • promoting the prevention and detection of economic crime

We set the performance standards for regulators and assess applications for changes to a regulator’s rules to ensure that any new rules align with the regulatory objectives.  We ensure that our work is well informed by doing regular research to find out what legal consumers need and how the market is responding.

The legal profession currently consists of some 17,000 barristers, 160,000 solicitors and 14,000 individuals operating in other aspects of the legal profession such as conveyancing. The sector had a turnover of £43.8bn in 2022.

The LSB has achieved a great deal in its relatively short existence. Significant progress has been made in relation to the liberalisation of the legal market, making regulation more independent and championing the interests of users and consumers of legal services. It has sought to improve access to justice and foster innovation by encouraging better value and removing outmoded restrictions, but without ever compromising the ethical principles and professional standards that lie at the heart of the legal profession. In summary, looking at fairer outcomes, stronger confidence and better services to reshape legal services to better meet society’s needs.