We accept most new instructions to act in personal injury and clinical negligence claims on a conditional fee basis. A Conditional Fee Agreement has very low financial risk to you. This is because you are not required to make any payment up front regardless of the outcome of the case. Providing you act in accordance with our advice and are not found to be fundamentally dishonest by a judge, it is only if your case wins that a payment is made. The payment is usually made as a deduction from your compensation. If you lose your case you will not have to pay for solicitors fees. We take this risk on your behalf.
If we win your case we charge a success fee and any shortfall in legal costs between what has been incurred and what we receive from the other side. The amount we receive from the other side is now fixed unless the case is valued at over £100,000. Details of the fixed amounts we will receive from the other side are set out here: PRACTICE DIRECTION 45 – TABLES OF FIXED COSTS (2023) (justice.gov.uk)
The success fee is charged based upon our assessment of the risks in your case and the value of our work in progress calculated by reference to the amount of time spent on your matter. It is capped at 25% of the past loss and value of your injuries and we also cap the total of the success fee and any shortfall in cost recovery at 25% of your overall damages. The amount charged may be lower than that depending upon the individual circumstances and risk factors in your case.
Our hourly rates vary from £175 and £350 per hour plus Vat dependent upon the level of experience and qualifications of the person acting or undertaking work in your case. We charge in units of 6 minutes, so each hour is made up of 10 units and our charges are based upon the time spent.
The value of time we incur in your matter can vary enormously from a few hundred pounds in a straightforward matter where liability is admitted to in excess of £100,000 for catastrophic injury cases worth over £1,000,000 which may take several years to conclude.
Disbursements and timescales
We will incur expenses in your case called disbursements. These are usually fees of external parties for services provided on your behalf in the course of your claim. They include things like barrister’s fees, medical or other expert fees, court fees, interpreter fees, fees of agents for photographs or fees of the police for the production of reports in road traffic accident cases.
The fees vary considerably depending upon the level of material to review and expertise of the person producing the work. Expert fees can vary from £180 up to several thousands of pounds for one report. Court fees usually vary from £455 to £10,000 for issuance of court proceedings. We will discharge these disbursements for you and seek to recover the fees for them from the other side upon conclusion of the proceedings, providing you agree with our advice to obtain after the event insurance. Where you do not wish to obtain after the event insurance, or where you do not accept the advice of one expert and wish to instruct an alternate expert, we will seek funds on account of such disbursements from you in advance.
The timescales for completion of personal injury and clinical negligence cases again varies depending upon the nature of the case. A straightforward case where liability is admitted at the outset and a single medical report obtained before the claim is settled may take 3-4 months to conclude. A catastrophic injury case which is defended and requires multiple disciplines of expert evidence to conclude may take in the region of 4-5 years.