Client information - costs and funding

Methods of funding include:

  • trade union funding
  • legal expenses insurance
  • payment by another person
  • hourly rate, win or lose
  • damages based agreement
  • contingency fee agreement
  • conditional fee agreement
  • hourly rate
  • Legal Aid
  • fixed fee

Trade Union funding

If you are a member of a Trade Union then you may be eligible for funding of your legal costs by that Trade Union.  Unless you notify us otherwise, we will proceed on the basis that trade union funding is unavailable.

Legal Expenses Insurance

If you have legal expenses insurance it may be that that covers this type of claim. Unless you notify us otherwise, we will proceed on the basis that legal expenses funding is unavailable.

Payment by another person

Unless you notify us otherwise, we will proceed on the basis that this option is not available to you.

Litigation

Hourly rate win or lose

If the matter that we are dealing involves litigation, we are happy to act for you on the basis that you pay our full hourly rate, win or lose. However, if we are prepared to charge you nothing in the event of defeat, under a Conditional Fee Agreement, we strongly advise you against this method of funding.

Damages-based agreement

This firm is not prepared to act on this basis. We cannot operate the firm profitably under such agreements due to the extensive restrictions imposed by Parliament. In particular such agreements heavily restrict the amount of costs that we can recover from the other side and this acts as a major disincentive.

Virtually no firms are prepared to enter into such agreements, and we believe that the quality of legal advice must inevitably be poor as the resources will simply not be there to finance the claim properly.

If you want any more information in relation to why we are not prepared to act under a Damages-Based Agreement then please contact us.

Contingency fee agreement

A contingency fee agreement means that you will only pay us fees if we achieve a pre-agreed result in your claim. If we achieve this result, our fees are then paid as an agreed percentage of the damages that you recover. The benefit of such an agreement is that you do not pay anything if your case is not successful (providing that you comply with the terms of the agreement). Such an agreement is only available before the commencement of legal proceedings.

Conditional fee agreement

A conditional fee agreement is often known as a “no win, no fee” agreement. A conditional fee agreement provides for payment of a success fee, but only if we achieve a pre-agreed result in your claim. If we achieve this result, then you pay us a success fee, which is a percentage of our hourly rate costs, with a cap applied that equates to a percentage of your damages. The benefit of such an agreement is that you do not pay anything if your case is not successful (providing that you comply with the terms of the agreement).

If we agree to act for you on a contingency fee basis before the issue of proceedings and if proceedings need to be issued, we will transfer to a conditional fee agreement. If this applies we will have enclosed those documents, together with a bridging agreement to join the two agreements together.

Hourly rate

Our charges will be calculated by reference to the time spent by us in dealing with this matter.

All work undertaken will be charged at the rates set out in the Schedule of Costs which appears at the end of the document provided to you at the outset of the matter and which forms the basis of the contract between you and us. This is a very important document which you should read carefully.

The charging rate is applied to the time spent on your matter, for example, communicating with, or attending you or others on your behalf, in preparation of any communications and documentation and in consideration or review of your file.

Time is recorded in units of 6 minutes or according to the time actually spent.

Letter, emails and telephone calls of six minutes or less are charged at one tenth of the hourly rate.

Disbursements (expenses)
There may be additional expenses, known as disbursements, such as travel costs, court fees and barristers’ fees which you must pay.

You have the right to object to your bill by making written representations to us within one month of delivery of the bill.

You have the right to have our charges assessed by the Court, as set out in sections 70-72 of The Solicitors’ Act 1974.

We will explain to you, and confirm in writing, any changed circumstances which will, or which are likely to, affect the amount of costs or the cost-benefit to you of continuing with your claim.

Legal Aid

Civil Legal Aid was abolished by the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 except in very limited circumstances. If you require further advice about legal aid, please ask me.

Fixed fees

We do not act for clients on a fixed fee basis when representing them in connection with accident, housing disrepair or financial mis-selling claims. There are very limited cases in which we may be prepared to offer fixed fees (e.g. employment and commercial disputes). In such cases we will let you know whether and if so on what basis we are prepared to provide fixed fee services.

Costs Orders

You may be responsible for another party’s legal costs if your claim is unsuccessful or if you withdraw from the case. You will also be responsible for the other side’s legal costs if you fail to accept any offer of compensation that the other side make and continue to trial and are then awarded a sum that is equal to or lower than the offer from the other side. These costs of another party may be covered by an existing insurance arrangement that you have, or you may be able to purchase insurance to cover this potential liability.  We can help you with this.