Robert Howard Forman, Senior Consultant


Co-author of The Law Society's flagship publication, The Solicitor's Handbook 2022 (and earlier 2019 edition), ranked in Chambers and Partners 2022, achieving 'star' status for five successive years, and recommended by Legal 500 2022, in Professional Discipline, Robert is a highly experienced Professional Discipline solicitor, with extensive experience in the field of Solicitors’ Professional Discipline & Regulation. Robert joined Murdochs' team in 1995.

Chambers & Partners UK 2022 - 'Robert Forman possesses a strong reputation within the legal services regulatory sector, due to his excellent track record defending legal professionals in SDT proceedings. He is also adept at helping firms avoid SRA intervention following solicitor misconduct. "He's very personable, quick to respond, has great legal knowledge and provides very practical advice.""Robert is very much a solicitor's solicitor. He is pragmatic and adds value by having been close to the regulatory process for a number of years.""He's extremely sharp on the details of cases that can be very paper-heavy."  " In previous edition, 'Robert Forman really understands the perspective and psychology of regulatory bodies. He gets what they will be concerned about and knows how to best represent your case in language they will respond to." "He provides very prompt and clear advice and is a good strategist." "He is an outstanding solicitor who provides very robust, thorough and empathetic advice."'has forged an outstanding reputation at the forefront of the legal services regulatory sector, due to his excellent track record defending legal professionals in SDT proceedings, as well as SRA investigations and appeals to the Administrative Court. A client notes: "He's knowledgeable and wise to the subtler nuances and practices of the SRA, allowing him to calmly and assuredly guide us through the tactical maze."'

Legal 500 UK 2022 - ''Extremely knowledgeable' senior consultant Robert Forman … is 'very much a solicitor's solicitor', is an expert in SRA and SDT proceedings … extremely knowledgeable and pragmatic in his approach.’ and in previous editions, 'Robert Forman has impressive legal knowledge & is very adept at matters of detail.' 'Robert Forman understands me, how I work, my fears and how to take those feelings into creating a positive plan.’  ‘Robert Forman … is an excellent lawyer ... is noted for his ‘superb acumen and industry knowledge’, ‘excellent communication skills’ and ‘tailored advice’.

Robert represents firms, individual solicitors and other legal professionals in regulatory investigations and disciplinary proceedings. Robert also provides regulatory compliance advice to firms and individuals, including COLPs and COFAs. Robert also has experience acting for barristers in proceedings brought by the Bar Standards Board, legal executives in CILEx Regulation investigations, licensed conveyancers before the CLC Adjudication Panel, and taxation professionals (CIOT/ATT) appearing before the Taxation Disciplinary Board tribunal.

Robert has also delivered a number of seminars on Solicitors Regulation, Professional Discipline & Professional Indemnity Insurance for The Law Society and for MBL Seminars.

Robert sat on the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal's Users Group and was appointed by the SRA as external advisor to the SRA Compensation Arrangements Review 2012-2014 to give insight from a Defence Practitioner’s perspective. He is a member of the Lawyers Defence Group, the Solicitors Assistance Scheme and the Association of Regulatory & Disciplinary Lawyers. His fields of practice include:

  • Representation in SRA investigations
  • Defence at the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal
  • Advice on and Appeals against  SRA Interventions
  • Self-reports to the SRA
  • Advice on the SRA Standards & Regulations 2019
  • SRA Practising Certificate issues
  • Admission to the Roll and the Suitability Test
  • Professional indemnity insurance coverage disputes
  • Appeals from the SDT to the Administrative Court
  • Advising firms, COLPs and COFAs on Compliance
  • Voluntary Practice Closures
  • SRA Authorisation for Authorised and Licensed Bodies (ABS)
  • Representations against the publication of regulatory decisions
  • Legal Ombudsman complaints

Robert Qualified as a solicitor 1997.

Examples of some of Robert’s cases :

  • SDT : SRA v O and T [2021] Successfully negotiated an Agreed Outcome for a firm, its COLP and MLCO resolving by way of agreed fine and limited costs very serious allegations of breaches of the Money Laundering Regulations.
  • SRA : SRA re W [2021] Acting for a medium-sized firm in a number of concurrent but separate SRA investigations into acting in a fraudulent transaction, breach of a court order by the firm, and failure to account to a client for money over several years, all closed with no further action.
  • SRA : SRA [2019-2021] Acting in an investigation concerning alleged sexual misconduct of a high profile solicitor - vehemently denied - no further action taken by the SRA.
  • SRA : SRA re G [2020] Successfully representing experienced conveyancing solicitor alleged to have acted dishonestly in fraudulent commercial property investment scheme - Investigation closed with no further action following detailed submissions.
  • SDT : SRA v K [2020] Successfully defending a senior partner in a 5 day hearing at the Tribunal hearing multiple allegations of dishonesty, acting without integrity, recklessness and other rule breaches following two judicial findings of dishonesty. All allegations dismissed.
  • SDT : SRA v J [2020] Successfully defending an experienced solicitor alleged to have acted dishonesty, without integrity and recklessly in misleading a court, opponent, client and her employer. All allegations dismissed
  • SDT : SRA v B [2020] Successfully defending an experienced solicitor, former counsel, initially in SRA investigation and then subsequent SDT proceedings. Agreed Outcome reached at the SDT including withdrawal of allegations. Dishonesty allegations dropped at investigation stage.
  • SRA: SRA re B [2020] Successfully representing Magic Circle senior partner - Internal investigation re alleged fraud concluded with no further action by firm or European regulator. Submissions made to SRA.
  • SDT : SRA v D [2019] Successfully defending a high profile solicitor in a 5 day hearing at the Tribunal hearing allegations of dishonesty, acting without integrity and recklessness in connection with an alleged dubious investment scheme
  • SDT : SRA v F [2019] Agreed Outcome reached with the SRA - agreed fine - high profile solicitor alleged to have acted without integrity in relation to a dubious investment scheme
  • Bar Standards Board : Re W [2019] - No further action following investigation of complaint by Inner Temple
  • Admin Ct : Solicitors Regulation Authority v MacGregor [2018] EWHC 3058 (Admin) - Acting for the Respondent in an SRA appeal against SDT sanction
  • Admin Ct : Solicitors Regulation Authority v Naylor [2018] EWHC 3058 (Admin) - Acting for the Respondent in an SRA appeal against SDT sanction
  • Court of Appeal : Solicitors Regulation Authority v Kadurugamuwa [2018] - Successfully resisted SRA application for permission to appeal.
  • SDT : SRA v A [Apr 2018] - Representing Principal of defunct firm Asons
  • SDT : SRA v N [Jan 2018] - Solicitor with dishonesty finding allowed to continue in practice
  • SDT : SRA v S [Jan 2018] – Agreed Outcome reached - withdrawing allegations of dishonesty against solicitor following psychiatric evidence
  • SDT : SRA v M [Dec 2017] - SDT - Solicitor with dishonesty finding allowed to continue in practice
  • Admin Ct : Solicitors Regulation Authority v Kadurugamuwa [2017] EWHC 2245 (Admin) – Successfully defended SRA appeal against SDT sanction

Publications :

Co-author of The Solicitor's Handbook, editions 2022 and 2019, contributor to previous editions.

You can contact Robert at the following email address:
robert.forman@murdochslaw.co.uk