These T&C’s provides you with information about the firm and how your case will be handled.
An Agreement is between David Lee Solicitors and you, the Client. The covering letter, the Agreement, any written amendments, any specific instructions to carry out work on your behalf or requests for any legal advice from us form the basis of the contract between us.
2. Off Premises Contracts
If you are a consumer and you either instructed us at a meeting away from our offices, or we did not meet, the ConsumerContracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 apply to this work. This means that you have the right to cancel your instructions to us within 14 days after the agreement is made. Please see the attached sheet Information on the Right to Cancel for further details.
3. Our Fees, Invoices & Payment
We shall invoice you as frequently as we think appropriate, which is usually on a monthly basis or occasionally at the start or conclusion of your case. Our invoices are payable in full upon receipt.
Client Business Agreement
If any of our invoices are not paid within 30 days of their delivery to you we may charge you interest on the outstanding amounts at the rate payable on judgment debts which is currently 8%. We have the right to suspend work on any matters on which you have asked us to act by giving you immediate written notice. We also have the right to apply to the Court/Tribunal to be taken off the record as your representative in relation to any legal matter in which we are representing you on giving you 7 (seven) days written notice. We have your authority to transfer any monies held by us from one account to another, any amounts required to pay our bills or to third parties. David Lee Solicitors are now able to take card payments from you over the phone and in person. Any sensitive information will not be held on our systems and will be destroyed straight after use. David Lee Solicitors will not retain any of your card details and any that are given will be destroyed after use, adopting the PCI DSS guidelines. PCI DSS, Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard is mandatory worldwide for any business that takes card payments.
4. How we calculate our fees
Our invoices are calculated at the appropriate hourly rate for each Fee Earner. The hourly rate is broken down into 6 minute units representing one tenth of the hourly rate. Time spent on your matter is calculated in 6 minute units. Emails, letters and telephone calls both sent and received are charged according to the time taken to deal with them. Unusual fees such as conferences with a Barrister and attendance at a Hearing will be agreed with you separately.
These are called disbursements and include costs incurred by us on your behalf which are payable to third parties for Company Searches, Court Fees, Counsel’s Fees and similar expenses. Outside copying binding and printing costing more than £10.00 will also be recharged to you.
6. Costs & Funding
We do not undertake Legal Aid work. You may have Legal Expenses Cover and you should check any insurance policies. Yourfees/costs may be paid by a third party. You are responsible for paying this firm’s invoices in full regardless of any third party arrangement. You will be given further information on this if appropriate.
If your matter involves the County/High Courts or Family Law you may be invited to participate in Mediation to resolve yourdispute. If this is the case, we will provide you with a Mediation Fact Sheet.
8. Service Levels
• We will update you by email and telephone at regular intervals and at least once per month
• We will respond to telephone calls within 1 working day
• We will respond to written communication within 3 working days
• We will communicate with you in plain language
• We will explain to you the legal work required as your matter progresses
• We will update you on the cost of your matter at least once per month
• We will update you on whether the likely outcomes still justify the likely costs and risks associated with your matter wheneverthere is a material change in circumstances
• We will update you on the likely timescales for each stage of this matter and any important changes in those estimates
• We will continue to review whether there are alternative methods by which your matter can be funded
• We will review your matter regularly
• We will advise you on any changes in the law
• We will advise you of any circumstances and risks of which we are aware or consider to be reasonably foreseeable that could affect the outcome of your matter
• You will provide us with clear, timely and accurate instructions
• You will respond to our communications and requests for information in a timely manner
• You will provide all documentation required to complete the transaction or case in a timely manner
• You will safeguard any documents that are likely to be required for disclosure
David Lee Solicitors is committed to high quality legal advice and client care. If you are unhappy about any aspect of the service you have received or about the bill, please contact David Lee on 01926 852 188, email firstname.lastname@example.org or by post to our office. We have a procedure in place which details how we handle complaints which is available upon request and on our website www.davidleesolicitors.co.uk. We have 8 (eight) weeks to consider your complaint. If we have not resolved it within this time you may complain to the Legal Ombudsman at PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ to consider your complaint. Any complaint to the Legal Ombudsman must usually be made within 6 months of the end of our work for you or within 12 months of you finding out there was a problem. For further information, you should contact the Legal Ombudsman.on 0300 555 0333.
10. Monies on Account
We may ask you to pay money on account before we do any work for you. This will be held in the firm’s Client Account. It is our practice not to accept cash in excess of £500.00. If you deposit cash into our account in excess of this amount, we may decide to charge you for any additional checks we decide are necessary to prove the source of funds. Where we pay money to you it will be paid by BACS or cheque. It will not be paid in cash or to a third party. You agree that we may use monies on account to settle expenses or fees payable to us. On occasions, we may pay interest on this money. However, where it is less than £20, this is retained by the firm.
11. Data Protection
We use the information you provide to us primarily for the provision of legal services to you and for related purposes including: updating and enhancing client records, analysis to help us manage our business, statutory returns along with legal and regulatory compliance. Our use of that information is subject to your instructions, the Data Protection Act 1998 and our duty of confidentiality. Please note: Our work for you may require us to give information to third parties such as expert witnesses and other professional advisers. You have a right of access under data protection legislation to the personal data that we hold about you. We may from time to time send you information that we think might be of interest to you. If you do not wish to receive that information, please notify our office in writing.
12. Storage of Documents
After completing the work, we will be entitled to keep all your papers, documents and electronic files while there is still money owed to us for fees and expenses. We will keep our file for 7 years; except those papers you ask to be returned to you. We keep files on the understanding that we can destroy these 6 years after the date of the final bill. If we take papers or documents out of storage in relation to continuing or new instructions to act for you, we will not normally charge for such retrieval. However, we may charge you for: (i) time spent producing stored papers that are requested; (ii) reading, correspondence or other work necessary to comply with your instructions in relation to the retrieved papers; (iii) printing or postage relating to sending you copies of retrieved papers.
13. Outsourcing of work
Sometimes we ask other companies or people to do typing, photocopying, printing or other administrative work on our files to ensure that this is done promptly. We will always seek a confidentiality agreement with these outsourced providers. If you do not want your file to be outsourced, please tell us as soon as possible.
14. Auditing and vetting of files
External firms/organisations may conduct audit or quality checks on our practice. These firms/organisations are required to maintain confidentiality in relation to your files.
15. Limitation on our liability
Our systems are designed to minimize the risk of mistakes. If however, we make a legal mistake, we have Professional Indemnity Insurance in place to the value of £2 million. This is the limit of our liability to you. We will not be liable for any consequential, special, indirect or exemplary damages, costs or losses, or any damages, costs or losses attributable to lost profits or opportunities. We can only limit our liability to the extent the law allows. In particular, we cannot limit our liability for death or personal injury caused by our negligence. Please ask if you would like us to explain any of the terms above. A copy of our policy is available for inspection at our offices.
You may end your instructions to us in writing at any time, but we can keep all your papers and documents while there is still money owed to us for invoices, fees and expenses. We may decide to stop acting for you immediately with good reason, such as non-payment of our invoices, fees or expenses. For other reasons for termination we will try to give you reasonable notice that we will stop acting for you. If you, or we, decide that we should stop acting for you, you will pay our charges up until that point. These are calculated on an hourly basis plus expenses as set out in this Agreement. Where a fixed fee has been agreed, you will pay a percentage of the fee by proportion of the work completed.
17. Evidence of Identity
The law requires solicitors to get satisfactory evidence of the identity of their clients and sometimes people related to them. This is because solicitors who deal with money and property on behalf of their client can be used by criminals wanting to launder money. To comply with the law, we need to get evidence of your identity as soon as possible. Our practice is to request sight of your passport or driving licence (showing your photograph) and a recent utility bill showing your home address. If you cannot provide us with the specific identification requested, please contact us as soon as possible to discuss other ways to verify your identity. We may also carry out independent identity checks.
18. Commission & Referral Fees
We do not have any arrangements in place where we pay or accept commissions or referral fees with third parties.
19. Equality & Diversity
We are committed to treat our clients, staff , and suppliers fairly and equally.
Information on the Right to Cancel
If you are a consumer (ie not a business) and you either instructed us at a meeting away from our offices, or we did not meet, the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 apply to this work. This means that you have the right to cancel your instructions to us within a limited time.
Right to Cancel
If you qualify you have the right to cancel this contract within 14 days without giving any reason. The cancellation period will expire after 14 days from the day of the making of the contract. To exercise the right to cancel you must inform us of your decision to cancel by a clear statement in writing (eg a letter sent by post or an email). You may use the model cancellation form attached, but it is not obligatory.
Please send your cancellation toDiana Crone, Office Manager, David Lee Solicitors, Station House, 12 Station Road, Kenilworth CV8 1JJ or email@example.com. Please note that to meet the cancellation deadline it is sufficient for you to send your cancellation before the deadline expires, even if it arrives afterwards.
Effect of Cancellation
If you cancel this contract we will repay you all payments received from you within 14 days after the day on which we were informed of your decision to cancel this contract. We will make the repayment using the same means of payment as you used for the initial transaction.
Instructions to Proceed
If you instructed us to start work before the cancellation period expired, and you then cancel the contract, you will have to pay us for the work done up to the cancellation at the contractual rates, and we may deduct this from any monies received from you. If we have completed the work the right to cancel is lost.