Fees and Funding
Conditional fee agreements (CFAs)
Damages based agreements (DBAs)
After the event insurance (ATE)
What is a conditional fee agreement (CFA)?
These are often referred to as “No Win, No Fee” agreements but also include agreements under which you pay capped or discounted costs in any event with full costs being charged in the event that you win. If you do win your case most of the costs can be recovered from your opponent.
If you win your case the law does allow us to charge an additional “success fee” calculated as a percentage of the basic costs. This “success fee” is not recoverable from your opponent and if we are charging a ‘success fee’ you will have to meet it from your own pocket or from any compensation you are awarded.
There are regulations in place which limit the maximum amount of success fee that can be charged. The maximum amount that we are entitled to take will be 25% of your compensation.
In some circumstances, if you lose you may be liable to pay your opponent’s legal costs and disbursements, but it may also be possible to buy insurance to protect against this risk - further details of which are provided below.
We will carefully advise you about funding in your case and if we enter a CFA with you, we will advise you at the outset about anything you may have to pay if your case is unsuccessful eg. any disbursements incurred by us. Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as expert fees, court fees, barristers fees, interpreter fees, courier fees and so forth.
We will carry out an initial assessment of your case based on information you provide and information which we may have to obtain in order to establish the viability of any claim. The length of this investigation process should not exceed 3 months however this is dependent on how readily available important information is. We will keep you updated on progress whilst we carry out the initial investigation process.
Excel Solicitors & Advocates adopts a clear and up-front pricing structure for our clients.
For our Advocacy service you will find a comprehensive list of fixed fee's for specific hearings here [all prices quoted do not include VAT which will be charged at a rate of 20%]:
For all of our other services we can enter into arrangements as detailed below. We hope this eliminates any concerns you may have in respect of 1) the cost of instructing one of our experts and 2) the manner in which your case is funded.
The time spent on your case will depend on the extent and complexities of the issues involved and the level of dispute surrounding these issues. We will tell you how we charge our time for the various aspects of our work such as correspondence, telephone calls, meetings with you and others, working on documents and court attendances.
Should you require more information then please do contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 0161 401 4009.
Legal Expenses Insurance - do you have it?
This kind of insurance policy (otherwise known as 'BTE' before the event insurance) is purchased before the accident actually happens and is usually attached to other insurance policies such as household, travel or motor insurance, for a small annual fee.
Sometimes insurance is attached to credit card agreements, or as a benefit attached to bank accounts. Similar to legal aid, this policy will cover costs in the event of a case losing but it does not cover all the costs of the claim if the case is successful. You need to tell your solicitor about any possibility that you may already have insurance.
Our Fixed Fee Protocol
Fixed fees allow you to instruct a solicitor to do a piece of work for you in the certain knowledge of how much it will cost you. Where appropriate your solicitor could conduct your whole case under one or a series of fixed prices. Alternatively you might prefer to deal with aspects of your case yourself and instruct us under a fixed fee agreement to deal with other parts such as a court hearing.
Fixed fees may not be appropriate for every client (for instance clients who require the bespoke consultancy service we provide) or for every case for which we can continue to offer competitive hourly rates.
We offer a fixed fee option for a range of services that we provide. This will normally be a set amount of legal fee that clients will be required to pay up to a certain stage in their case. Each stage of the case will attract another fee. Please note, all fees for meetings are payable at the time of the meeting and for other work, in advance.
We are committed to ensuring that our clients obtain access to justice at an affordable price. We think it is very important for clients to have choice in terms of how much support they require from us and the costs involved in receiving that support.
We will invite you to a face to face meeting (at our office, your home/premises) or otherwise arrange a telephone conference to discuss your case in detail. This usually takes about one hour and we charge a fixed fee of £175.00 (not including VAT at 20%). We will advise you as to the merits of your case, the various options available to you and the likely costs of our further involvement. An initial meeting may be enough to enable you to manage your situation, but if not we will discuss with you the various ways in which we can help to take your case forward and the likely costs and expenditure involved.
What is a damages based agreement (DBA)?
A DBA is an agreement whereby a solicitor and a client can agree to share the risk of litigation. Payment of solicitors’ fees, counsel fees and VAT by a client under a DBA is dependent on achieving defined success criteria agreed when the DBA is entered into, and is based on a percentage of the sum recovered from the losing party/opponent.
After The Event Insurance - we can get it
Contact Us in confidence
We can help to provide clients with a robust ATE (after the event) insurance policy through a number of trusted underwriters. This is a type of insurance insurance which covers the legal costs and expenses involved in litigation. We strongly advise our clients to take out these policies to protect them against paying opponent legal costs in the event their case is unsuccessful.
Most ATE Insurance policies are purchased at the point at which a solicitor begins a claim. The overall concept of an ATE Insurance policy is that it will protect the claimant against costs risks right from the outset - if a claim is insured at a late stage then (as with most insurance policies) costs and disbursements which occurred before the date of the After the Event Insurance policy will not normally be covered. Since, when they commence, many personal injury claims fall within a broadly similar risk category, many ATE insurers offer a standardised ATE policy premium if the case is insured early. The underwriters we recommend are:
Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Provide deferred premiums – which are not payable until settlement of the claim
Excel Solicitors & Advocates is authorised to carry out insurance mediation activities and our details can be found on the Financial Services Register on the Financial Conduct Authority's website here.
To learn more please do not hesitate to contact us.