This is an article from the Law Society Gazette.
Apparently a dentist in Swansea is the first property buyer in the UK to exchange contracts digitally. The buyer purchased a £700,000 commercial property in Trowbridge in a deal secured by blockchain digital encryption technology.
This is brilliant! Congratulations to all those involved.
Whilst it will not remove the need for solicitors in transactions, it will certainly speed up the process by replacing much of the labour intensive work that tends to be done by less senior staff. With a bit of luck it will also reduce the costs, cut out delays caused by councisl’ tardiness at replying to enquiries, and land registry issues. Ultimately I believe it will also help make transactions more secure and be an essential part of the changes needed to prevent gazumping and gazundering.
My concern at this stage though is persuading solicitors to quickly change. As with banking, blockchain is the future of commercial contracts and case law, not just conveyancing, but how many solicitors currently have a clue what it is about? If they don’t learn quickly, then they will indeed be like the dinosaurs…extinct.