No Win No Fee – The Basics
No Win No Fee is a term in the UK commonly used to describe Conditional Fee Agreements (CFA) between lawyers and their clients. In general, the CFA enables people with limited financial resources to enter into litigation and pay their lawyer from the proceeds of a successful outcome. In cases where the lawsuit is unsuccessful, the client’s payment obligations to their lawyer is typically limited to disbursements but are likely to have to pay for their opponent’s fees and disbursements incurred. For this reason, clients have the option of purchasing “After the Event” (ATE) insurance to cover the risk of losing. The insurance premium along with the cost of disbursements are usually included as part of the claim. Not all types of cases allow no win no fee arrangements. Family and criminal cases do not allow CFA’s to be used.
Accident Injury in the UK
If you are thinking about making a personal injury claim you will want to know what it involves, how much compensation you are likely to receive and whether your claim is likely to be successful. Before your pick up the phone and call, learn more about selecting and working with the best No Win No Fee solicitors for your situation.
Types of Cost Components
There are several cost components to be aware of when investigating the benefits of a No Win No Fee Agreement:
- Basic Charges or Standard Fee – Fees associated with legal work done on behalf of a client. Typically based on the number of hours spent and hourly rates associated with the staff involved with case.
- Disbursements – Payment for expenses made on behalf of the client including but not limited to court fees, experts’ fees, accident report fees and travelling expenses.
- Success Fee or “Uplift” To compensate for the cost of lost cases, lawyers typically are allowed to add a success fee or “Uplift” in the CFA. This is usually a percentage (not more than 100%) of a lawyer’s basic charges that is added to a client’s bill for which they will seek to recover from the other party if they win the claim.
- After the Event (“ATE”) Insurance Premium – Cost of Insurance as part of a no win no fee agreement to indemnify the costs and disbursements of the lawsuit. Usually purchased at or after the start of the litigation process.
Advantages and Disadvantages
- Because the cost to the client is linked to the outcome of the case. For an unsuccessful case, there is the possibility that the client pays little or no cost.
- Required disclosure of a CFA to the other party may encourage earlier settlement as the other party’s cost will increase in line with the level of the success fee.
- Any damages awarded to the client will not be eaten up by the success fee, as the success fee will in most cases be payable by the opponent.
- There is no privilege, nor privacy attached to the funding arrangement in place. The existence of the CFA must be disclosed to the other party at the outset of the litigation and the risk assessment has to be disclosed to the court and if necessary to the other party when costs are assessed.
- A CFA gives the lawyer a financial interest in the litigation and because of this they are inclined to take control of the strategy and resolution of the litigation.
- Unless the client buys ATE to cover the winning party’s costs, the client is still at risk to pay those costs.
Solicitors featured on this site are fully qualified and will find out everything they need to know about your accident claims, injury claims or any type of compensation claims you may need to make. They will deal with your claim right through the entire process, from beginning to end. When they occur, injury resulting from accidents can be truly devastating and good solicitors can make the compensation process as efficient and hassle free as possible. With years of experience and a wealth of expertise in every claim category, they have the ability to assist you to claim the compensation you are entitled to.
No Win No Fee Solicitors in the UK – Alphabetical
Selected members of the Law Society of England and Wales offering No Win No Fee arrangements are listed below:
- Abney Garsden McDonald Solicitors
- Bailey Smailes Solicitors
- Camps Solicitors
- Dale and NewBerry Solicitors
- EAD Solicitors
- Fairbairn Smith & Co. Solicitors
- Gartons Solicitors
- Hamers Solicitors
- Iacopi Palmer Solicitors LLP
- Jackaman Smith & Mulley Solicitors
- Keith Ready & Co. Solicitors
- Last Cawthra Feather LLP Solicitors
- Machins Solicitors LLP
- Neil Millar & Company Solicitors
- OH Parsons & Partners
- Pattinson & Brewer Solicitors
- Ralli Solicitors
- Seddons Solicitors
- Thring Townsend Lee & Pembertons Solicitors
- Ultimate Law Ltd
- Veale Wasbrough Vizards Solicitors
- Walker Morries Solicitors
- Young & Pearce Solicitors
- Zermansky & Partners Solicitors
Courts and Services Act 1990
Through this act, Conditional Fee Agreements were made lawful. It gave the Lord Chancellor the authority to define the types of litigation that could be subject to a No Win No Fee arrangement and how they could be administered.
Contingency Fees Agreement Regulations Act 1995
Through this act, the Lord Chancellor made it practicable to use No Win No Fee arrangements in practice by allowing them in personal injury, insolvency and human rights cases. These regulations also allowed a “Succes Fee” to be included as part fo the No Win No Fee arrangement. Success Fees are monies in excess of the solicitors’ basic fees and are aimed at offsetting the lost of revenues in cases that were unsuccessful. The problem with the success fee was the client would be required to pay it even if the case was successful resulting in a situation where the client would not recover 100% of the award.
Contingency Fees Agreement Regulations 2000
This problem was solved with the amendment to the No Win No Fee Regulations in 2000 which allowed the successful party to recover the success fee from the losing party. At about the same time, Legal Aid (financial assistance for people who could not afford to pay for court proceedings) was withdrawn for personal injury, defamations and corporate cases. It was also enacted that Legal Aid should be refused where No Win No Fee agreements were a more appropriate form of funding. No Win No Fee arrangements are currently allowed for all civil cases except family cases. They may or may not include a success fee.
- Advicenow – Advicenow is an independent, not-for-profit website providing accurate, up-to-date information on rights and legal issues. Their information service brings together the best information on the law and rights from over 400 UK websites.
- AdviceUK – Advice UK is the UK’s largest support network for free, independent advice centres. AdviceUK was formed in 1979 as the Federation of Independent Advice Centres (FIAC)
- Association of Personal Injury Lawyers – APIL exists to help its members fight for the rights of injured people. Founded in April 1990 by a group of barristers and solicitors who wished to improve the services provided for victims of personal injury, today APIL has grown to become the trusted organisation in the promotion, encouragement and development of expertise in personal injury law.
- Citizens Advice Bureau – The Citizens Advice service helps people resolve their legal, money and other problems by providing free, independent and confidential advice, and by influencing policymakers.
- Community Legal Advice – Civil Legal Advice (Formerly Community Legal Advice) is a national adviceline for residents of England and Wales.
- Health and Safety Executive – The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) HSE is the national independent watchdog for work-related health, safety and illness. They are an independent regulator and act in the public interest to reduce work-related death and serious injury across Great Britain’s workplaces.
- Ministry of Justice – The Ministry of Justice works to protect the public and reduce reoffending, and to provide a more effective, transparent and responsive criminal justice system for victims and the public.
- Law Centres Federation – The Law Centres Federation is the voice of Law Centres. We champion free legal advice and representation. We seek justice for the most disadvantaged in society by supporting and developing the national network of Law Centres.
- The Law Society – The Law Society represents solicitors in England and Wales. From negotiating with and lobbying the profession’s regulators, government and others, to offering training and advice, they help protect and promote solicitors across England and Wales.
- Legal Services Commission – LSC works in partnership with solicitors and not-for-profit organisations to help over 2 million people each year access legal advice, information and help.
- UNISON – UNISON provides the broadest range of legal help to union members in the UK. They offer advice and assistance not just with work issues, but also for personal and family issues outside the workplace.
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