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I took on a representative at the end of February after they

advised me it was cheaper...
I took on a representative at the end of February after they advised me it was cheaper to go on account than use a no win no fee solicitor. (no win no fee solicitors quoted me around 35% of any award as their fee).

At no time prior to taking on my case did my representative appear to carry out any risk assessment into the potential costs and benefits of pursuing my claim.

Despite asking them at the outset, they failed to tell me what chance my claim had of succeeding. They proceeded to rack up costs as time went on only telling me they couldn't give an answer until they'd seen all the evidence.
It wasn't until they'd sought advice from legal counsel in early April (which I had to pay for, around £750) that counsel advised that my case was valued at around £3500 and didn't stand much chance of success. On this My representative advised that we move to settle the claim. Still without advising if it was worth it on balance with their running costs.
Today they settled with the respondent for £6000 and my solicitors costs have mounted to close to or over £5000 including fees for the legal counsel.
I feel I have been misled and I'll advised. Given their fees have taken a substantial amount of my award and they did not present information fairly from the start advising if it was worth pursuing the claim on balance with their fees.
I wanted to know if there's any way I can contest their fees so it matches a typical no win no fee arrangement.
Or what other options I have.
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Answered in 1 hour by:
5/3/2013
UKSolicitorJA
UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: UK Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 4,312
Experience: solicitor
Verified
Hello,

Sorry to hear about this.

It does appear that you may challenge the representative's fees on the grounds that they misrepresented you their fees especially if they said it would be cheaper to go with them than a no win no fee solicitor.

You should try and agree on a reasonable sum with them for their fees, say £2000 which is approximately the 35% that would have been charged by a no win no fee solicitor less £100 as they said they would be cheaper.

If they refuse and you have given them a final notice of your intention to take them to court, you may file a court claim against them on the grounds of misrepresentation under the Misrepresentation Act 1967.

The easiest would be to file the claim online at www.moneyclaim.gov.uk

Hope this helps. Please leave feedback
Ask Your Own UK Employment Law Question
Customer reply replied 4 years ago

This is very helpful, thank you.


 


I decided to use them and not go with a no-win no fee solicitor based on their advising against the win no fee route:



  • I am afraid we cannot deal with your matter on a no-win no-fee basis. The problem with the no-win no-fee model is that despite the allure of paying no solicitors fees unless your claim is successful, the fees that a successful client will have to pay are up to 100% higher than if the case was not handled on this basis. Thus, in the event that your claim is successful, a significantly higher amount of your compensation will go to your solicitors if you go down the no-win no-fee route.




  • I would reiterate what I stated in our earlier telephone conversation, that should this firm handle the matter, most of the work would be dealt with by myself at the lower hourly charging rate of £150 + VAT, with Jassette acting in supervisory capacity. We always aim to offer our clients an efficient service and work to ensure that costs are kept to a minimum at every stage.


 


Up until yesterday, they advised me:


 



  • Furthermore, your calculation of the differential in legal fees between JPS Law and a no-win no-fee representative is not correct. A no-win no-fee provider does not receive 35% of any award; they receive their usual fees for the amount of work undertaken, with a percentage uplift of up to 100%. I.e., if their usual fee for an hour’s work is £200, they would instead charge up to £400 an hour.


 


Are these explanations incorrect? / Misleading?...


 

100% is the absolute upper limit and in your case, which was settled and did no go to trial, a reasonable uplift could have been 12.5%.

You should dispute their fees as advised previously, even if it means settling on £3,000 as their fees.

All the best
UKSolicitorJA
UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: UK Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 4,312
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