Alerts

Warning: Emails from "J Hutchson Solicitors LLP" and "John Holsts & Co Solicitors"

13 September 2017

Emails have been sent claiming to be from "J Hutchson Solicitors LLP" and "John Holsts & Co Solicitors".

What is the scam?

The SRA has been informed that emails have been sent claiming to be from "J Hutchson Solicitors LLP" and "John Holsts & Co Solicitors". These firms are also described in the emails as "J Hutson Conveyancing LLP" and "John Holst Conveyancing LLP". The emails claim to have been sent from either "Katherina" or "Mark Odin", both described as "Senior Partner".

The emails claim to attach a sales memorandum. A concern is that this attachment may contain malware.

The emails have been sent from email addresses "odin.mark@holtlawyer.org" and "katherina@hutsonsolicitor.org".

The emails provide a telephone number of "86783-8784 600", a fax of "01266-773674" and a DX of "59555". The emails also provide an address of "Essex House, 75 Venus Road, Hove, BN 355". The emails also misuse the SRA number of a genuine firm (see below).

The SRA does not authorise and regulate any firms called "J Hutchson Solicitors LLP", "John Holsts & Co Solicitors", "J Hutson Conveyancing LLP" or "John Holst Conveyancing LLP". It also does not authorise and regulate a solicitor named "Mark Odin".

Any business or transactions using the details above are not undertaken by a solicitor's practice or an individual authorised or regulated by the SRA.

Is there a genuine firm or person?

J A Stevens & Co is a genuine firm which is authorised and regulated by the SRA using SRA number 68915.

The SRA authorises and regulates several solicitors with the first name Katherina, none of whom are believed to have any connection to the emails referred to above.

The genuine firm J A Stevens & Co have confirmed that they have no connection to the emails referred to above.

What should I do?

When a firm's or individual's identity has been copied exactly (or cloned), due diligence is necessary. If you receive correspondence claiming to be from the above firm(s) or individual(s), or information of a similar nature to that described, you should conduct your own due diligence by checking the authenticity of the correspondence by contacting the law firm directly by reliable and established means. You can contact the SRA to find out if individuals or firms are regulated and authorised by the SRA and verify an individual's or firm's practising details. Other verification methods, such as checking public records (e.g. telephone directories and company records) may be required in other circumstances.