A couple of years ago, a flight carrying Paul Philip back to the UK was delayed, stranding the SRA’s chief executive in South Africa for a day. He doesn’t usually sue airlines for minor delays, he says, but this one was sufficiently inconvenient that, on this occasion, he did.

Philip instructed an online provider to pursue his claim. They sent him some forms to fill in and secured a few hundred pounds’ compensation. Only at that point did he discover they were taking half of the amount as their fee.

There is an unmissable irony in a leading supporter of a deregulated legal services sector experiencing first-hand how it benefi...

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