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Halifax says move into legal advice not a threat to IFAs

Halifax insists that its move into legal advice does not signal a threat to IFAs.

The banking giant is to offer customers access to legal services such as will-writing, conveyancing and inheritance tax planning via a panel of selected service providers but it will not extend the service to broader areas of financial advice.

The scheme will cost customers £89 a year for unlim-ited access to the range of legal services.

Halifax joins the Co-operative Bank and the AA in moving into legal advice which could threaten some adv-isers’ business.

More and more well-established high-street and financial services firms are taking advantage of the opening up of the legal services market.

Halifax says it has no plans to own a law firm once the Legal Services Bill, which will allow non-legal services entities to run law services firms, comes into force in 2008.

Spokesman Paul Fincham says: “This is not a precursor to owning a legal firm. The aim is to increase the range of products that we provide so our customers have as many options as possible with us but we will not be moving into specific areas of financial advice.”

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