Legal Services

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Environment – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 20th January 1988.

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Photo of Mr John Heddle Mr John Heddle , Staffordshire Mid 12:00 am, 20th January 1988

As my right hon. Friend's Department is responsible for the legal services provided by local government, does he share my grave concern at the length of time that a number of Left-wing Labour local authorities take to reply to local search inquiries by solicitors? Is he aware that the Law Commission suggested that 10 days is a reasonable time, but that the London boroughs of Hackney, Islington, Camden and many others take up to three months to reply to simple inquiries? Is that not an affront to nurses, teachers and first-time buyers who want to buy their own homes simply and without delay? Will my right hon. Friend consider imposing sanctions or possibly privatising such services when local authorities offend the code?