If you are considering instructing a solicitor one of your first considerations will be costs, what are they, how do I cover them and how are they calculated? It is completely understandable that this is one of the first things to spring to mind as legal work is not necessarily cheap. However, you must remember your lawyer is not out to trick you – all costs are meant to be offered transparently. If your potential lawyer is not being forthcoming about costs and payment options, find another lawyer. All costs should be discussed in full before the work takes place so everyone knows where they stand.
The price of your legal work will partially depend on the way your lawyer decides to charge for it. For example when charging for conveyancing work a solicitor may charge a percentage fee e.g 0.5% of the cost of the property, they may charge an hourly rate or they may charge a fixed fee. Pricing structures will be dependent on the solicitor and all are standard ways of charging for legal work. Think about what option is best for you and what option is best for the legal work you require to be completed. If you opt for fixed fee, the benefit is largely that you will know the full amount you are paying before the work takes place, with hourly rates the cost can fluctuate depending on the amount of time the work takes. If the work takes longer than expected your predicted costs not end up being in line with what you have to pay, costs will be higher than expected. However the other side of the coin is that the work could end up cheaper than predicted if it goes particularly smoothly.
It is possible your legal work will not cost you anything – a no win no fee agreement means if you win your case your lawyer will recover the costs from the losing party and if you do not win your case you will have nothing to pay. This is often offered as an agreement when making personal injury claims. The other option for free legal work is a pro bono agreement. If a solicitor agrees to work for you pro bono, they agree to complete legal work for you voluntarily and free of charge. Many lawyers work pro bono when they are in training, and some firms specifically advertise pro bono services. Have a look online, there are many online directories which will point you in the direction of free legal advice.
If you cannot afford legal work you may qualify to receive legal aid, so complete the assessment on the government’s website to find out how much help you could get in terms of paying your legal fees. The lower your income, the more help you could potentially receive.
Roskell Davies offer a free initial consultation with one of our team so you give us a picture of the legal work you need to be completed by us and we can talk you through the potential costs. Call 0800 142 2901 or fill in an online enquiry.