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Halifax begins offering legal services

UK bank Halifax has launched a new service that will enable members to access everyday legal products such as wills and legal advice.

The HBOS subsidiary said that its Halifax Legal Solutions offering is believed to be the first of its kind by a major high street financial services provider.

Customers using the service will pay an annual membership fee of GBP89, which gives them unlimited access to all services either online or via a dedicated telephone legal advice service staffed by a team of solicitors, barristers and other qualified professionals.

Services available through Halifax Legal Solutions include will preparation, an ID theft resolution service, a searchable web-based law guide and discounted conveyancing.

The bank believes that the venture represents a significant organic growth opportunity in a market that the Department for Constitutional Affairs estimates to be worth GBP8 billion.

In other announcements, Halifax has posted a note on its website detailed forthcoming updates to its online banking service. The improvements will include a new look, plus new features that will enable users to transfer money between banking and savings accounts more easily, and apply for an overdraft and change existing overdraft limits online.