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Best Practice Case Study: How speaking in plain English saw TLT take home the trophy

TLT won Best Law Firm at the Car Finance Awards 2019. Its entry detailed how it puts documentation in plain English for clients, and its wider activity for the good of the industry.

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According to the entry, TLT has an outstanding and award-winning full-service legal practice advising major motor finance providers on regulatory, compliance and contentious issues across the UK.


TLT’s specialist motor finance team is headed by Russell Kelsall (Legal 500). According to the entry, each team member has both non-contentious and contentious experience, meaning TLT’s advice is holistic and considers both regulatory issues and litigation risks. It continues to make significant investment to grow its team.


TLT claimed in its entry that it “stands apart” from its competitors through its “high credibility” and a “true end-to-end” experience. It is regularly instructed on typically “magic circle” work and works collaboratively with some of the largest law firms in the world.


The entry included some recent highlights, such as launching new and innovative products including plain English documentation. It developed robust policies and procedures for dealing with topical issues including commission disclosure, provision of information and affordability issues. TLT also designed and developed policies and strategies for dealing with significant back book risks including irresponsible lending, commission non-disclosure and broker/dealer oversight.


TLT explained its “end-to-end service” includes advising on authorisations/permissions, interactions with the FCA, financial promotions, relationships with third parties (including dealer and broker terms and structures), compliant documentation, termination and recoveries and disputes.


Some members of TLT’s team edit or author industry texts including Goode: Consumer Credit Law, Butterworths Financial Regulation Service and Consumer Credit: Law, Practice and Precedents.


TLT advises on sensitive issues including dispute management, regulatory breaches, third-party dealer responsibilities, and remediation when things go wrong. According to the entry, it has a particular expertise in remediation of non-compliant documentation (both contractual and non-contractual). It also works with legal and business teams on high-profile strategic issues before the Financial Ombudsman Service.


The entry also describes how TLT is involved in the wider industry, through regularly attending industry committee meetings, presenting the latest developments and speaking at the FLA’s conferences. It provides three full-day training sessions every quarter for the FLA, and last year hosted TLT’s first Consumer Finance Conference which included sessions on unenforceability, mis-selling and the FCA’s review of the motor finance market. TLT also regularly write for industry magazines and contribute to an industry blog.


TLT included its industry recognition in the entry. TLT’s consumer finance team, including the motor finance team, is ranked by Chambers & Partners and won last year’s “best legal advisory firm” at the Car Finance Awards.

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