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Lawyer vs. Conveyancer: What’s the Difference & Which Do You Need?

May, 7th
Settled Team
Conveyancing Tips

Buying or selling a property is one of the most exciting and important decisions you’ll make in your life. But it can also be pretty daunting, especially when it comes to navigating the legalities involved – property law is no joke! That’s where a professional comes in handy. But which one do you need – a lawyer or a conveyancer? Lawyers and conveyancers are not the same thing (but to really make your head spin a lawyer can also be a conveyancing lawyer). In this article, we’ll break down the differences between these two professionals, and help you determine which one is right for your property transaction.

What is a Conveyancer? 

So, you’ve probably heard the term ‘conveyancer’ thrown around when it comes to property transactions, but what exactly is a conveyancer and what do they do? Well, conveyancing services are carried out by a licensed professional who specialises in the legal aspects of real estate – i.e. buying or selling a property. They handle tasks such as preparing and reviewing legal documents, conducting property searches, liaising with the other party’s representatives, and ensuring all legal requirements are met throughout the transaction. 

One of the biggest benefits of hiring a conveyancer is that they can help make the often complex and stressful process of property buying or selling as smooth and hassle-free as possible. They can also save you time and money by ensuring that all legal aspects of the transaction are taken care of correctly and efficiently.

What is a Lawyer?

Lawyers (also interchangeably called solicitors) are legal professionals who are qualified to provide legal advice, legal services, represent clients in court, and assist with various legal matters. When it comes to property transactions, lawyers can help with legal work tasks such as reviewing and preparing contracts, conducting legal searches, advising on tax and other legal implications, and representing you in court if any disputes arise.

One of the biggest benefits of hiring a lawyer is that they can offer expertise and guidance on complex legal matters, ensuring that your interests are protected throughout the transaction. Additionally, having a lawyer on your side can give you peace of mind and confidence, knowing that you have a legal professional who understands all areas of law advocating for your rights and interests.

Lawyer vs. Conveyancer

If you’re in Australia and looking to buy or sell property, you may be wondering whether you need a lawyer or conveyancing work. While both can help you with the legal aspects of the process, there are some key differences to consider.

For starters, the scope of work for each is different. The conveyancing process is largely focused on tasks like conducting title searches, contract of sale and preparing legal documents. In short, conveyancers offer more general information for relatively simple property transactions.

Lawyers, on the other hand, can handle a wider range of legal issues related to property transactions, such as tax implications and complex sales. They have a more extensive knowledge of the legalities of property transactions.

In terms of qualifications and training, conveyancers are licensed by the state, while lawyers have completed a law degree and additional training.

Plus, conveyancers may be less expensive than lawyers, making them a good choice for simpler transactions. However, for more complex matters or if you need legal advice beyond the transfer process, a lawyer may be the better choice.

Conveyancing Fee vs Law Firm Fee

When it comes to the cost of conveyancing services, the fees charged by conveyancers are generally lower than those of law firms. This is because conveyancers specialise in property transactions and have streamlined their processes to provide efficient services at a lower cost.

Additionally, conveyancers do not require as much legal training as lawyers, which also contributes to their lower fees. However, it’s important to note that the cost of conveyancing services can vary depending on the complexity of the transaction, the location, and the individual conveyancer or law firm.

So, while conveyancers are often the more affordable option, it’s still important to compare fees and services offered by different providers before making a decision.

Property Lawyer or Conveyancer: Who’s the Best Fit for Your Property Sale? 

When you should hire a conveyancer:

  • Simple property transactions
  • When you have a good understanding of the legal requirements involved
  • When cost is a factor

When you should hire a lawyer: 

  • Complex property transactions
  • When legal advice is needed
  • When there are potential legal issues or disputes

When You Don’t Have a Choice

In Queensland and the ACT, lawyers are mandatory for all property transactions, including home purchases. But don’t worry; you can still find specialised conveyancing companies staffed by solicitors who focus on conveyancing.

Which Should You Choose?

Here’s a really short breakdown to help you decide between a lawyer and a conveyancer for your property transaction: 

  • If you’re looking for a quick and easy property purchase, and don’t need specific advice, a conveyancer might be right for you.
  • If you have a complex property transfer or want legal advice, seek a lawyer. 
  • If you’re in the ACT or Queensland, you must choose a lawyer. 

Rely on our Expert Conveyancers

At Settled.com.au, our team consists of licensed conveyancers and experienced lawyers dedicated to providing a hassle-free conveyancing experience that ensures you settle with ease and efficiency – whether you’re a first home buyer or very experienced in the Australian property market. Don’t hesitate to contact our expert conveyancing team to learn more about how we can help you. If you’re looking for a quick conveyancing quote, simply request a free quote below.

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