Fee Information For Selected Services
Wyn Legal aims to provide a high level of legal services at a competitive rate. Every case is unique and legal costs vary depending on the nature and complexity of the matter.
The initial 15 minute consultation is at no charge. If you decide not to instruct us following the initial 15 minute consultation, there will be no obligation to pay our fees.
Types of work and our hourly rate
Below is a range of hourly rates for specific types of work.
Employment Tribunals (Claims for Unfair or wrongful dismissal) is charged at £250 – £500+VAT per hour and disbursements.
Debt Recovery (up to £100,000) is charged at £250 – £500+VAT per hour.
Our terms relating to fees
In determining the fees to be charged, we will take into consideration the following:-
• the nature and complexity of the work;
• the amount of time spent, knowledge required and responsibility involved;
• the type and nature of the documents involved; and
• the value of the transaction, property or subject matter.
Details of our charges are set out in our engagement letter. We may agree to charge you on a fixed-fee basis or on a time basis. In the latter case we record time in six-minute units.
Where our fees are calculated on a time basis our current hourly charging rates are as follows, unless otherwise notified:
Partner – £500 p/h
Senior Solicitor – £395 p/h
Solicitor – £300 p/h
Senior Consultant Solicitor – £300 – £395 p/h
Consultant Solicitor – £250 p/h
Legal Executive/Licensed Conveyancer – £200 p/h
Consultant Legal Executive – £200 p/h
Trainee Solicitor – £200 p/h
Our rates are reviewed regularly and we will notify you in writing if these rates change.
For the purposes of calculating time spent on your matter, we will include, but is not limited to, all meetings with you and others in relation to the matter, time spent travelling and waiting, considering and preparing papers, making and receiving telephone calls, correspondence, sending and receiving e-mails, attendance at Court or Tribunal, time spent in filing documents at Court and undertaking other clerking tasks, and documenting the arrangements under which we will provide legal services to you.
The amount of time spent on a matter will also be influenced by the manner in which you respond to our requests for information. Timely provision of up to date information will help us to spend less time on your matter.
We provide you with estimates to assist you in understanding what your case may cost but also to enable you to adequately budget and make an informed decision as to whether to proceed or not. Our estimate is not reflective of a fixed-fee nor conclusive and should not be regarded as such unless specifically confirmed in writing.
If a transaction or other matter does not proceed to completion, our fees (together with disbursements and VAT) will still be payable.
Any agreed fee structure such as a fixed-fee will not cover additional work not identified when the structure was entered into.
Where you have made a payment on account of fees or disbursements or where we are holding monies on your behalf, we may deduct any sums owing to us from such monies before accounting to you for the balance.
Where we are acting for a corporate client, we may, as a condition to our providing legal services to you, require one or all of the directors or shareholders to guarantee the payment of any sums due to us by the corporate client by executing a personal guarantee.
We may request this prior to commencing legal services or at any time during our engagement. If we receive notice of termination of any personal guarantee, we may suspend our engagement until we are satisfied that any sums due to us will be paid and we may terminate our engagement by notice in writing.
Unless expressly stated, our fee estimates do not include expenses or payments to third parties which we may have to incur on your behalf. These are known as “disbursements”. Examples of disbursements are travel expenses, phone call charges, fax and photocopying charges, experts’ (including costs draftsmen) fees, Counsels’ fees, stamp duty and search fees. These will generally be billed at the same time as we invoice you for our fees, but may sometimes be billed at another time.
If we have to incur additional expenses for staff, other than lawyers, working overtime on evenings or weekends in order to provide an effective service to you, we may include these expenses as a separate item on our invoice to you.
Litigation Procedure and general projected cost estimates
In case you have not been through the litigation process before, we have set out below some of the basic steps that are involved in most of the proceedings in this jurisdiction. This is intended to be a broad brush guide to give you a flavour of how litigation tends to proceed. Of course we will give you specific advice relevant to your case as it progresses.
Letter of Claim
The parties are required to exchange information relevant to the claim prior to any proceedings being commenced. The starting point is for the prospective Claimant to send the prospective Defendant a formal Letter of Claim setting out the claim in full. The prospective Defendant then has an opportunity to respond. From the outset, all documents which might be relevant to the case must be preserved.
Beginning the Proceedings
In order to then begin the court proceedings, a Claim Form and Particulars of Claim are issued at Court and served on the Defendant(s). These are often drafted by a barrister who is instructed and who remains involved in the case (each side will usually instruct a barrister). A Court fee is incurred at this stage as well as fees for the barrister. The Particulars of Claim set out in detail the nature of what has happened and what the Claimant seeks from the Defendant.
Responding to the Proceedings
This is the opportunity for the Defendant to set out their case in response to the Particulars of Claim by serving a Defence. Again, this is usually drafted by the barrister. To the extent the Defendant has a Counterclaim, this is incorporated separately into the Defence.
Reply and Defence to any Counterclaim
The Reply is an opportunity for the Claimant to answer anything the Defendant puts in their Defence and put in a Defence to any Counterclaim that has been brought by the Defendant. The process up to this point in the case can take several months to complete.
Case Management Conference
The parties’ solicitors often attend at this stage at short procedural hearing at Court to agree the timetable for the remainder of the case. Sometimes, these steps can be agreed and attendance at Court can be avoided.
It is necessary in most cases to make or defend applications made to the Court during the case which deal with various procedural matters. Such applications, which are heard by the Court, tend to be short hearings to determine, for example, contested changes to timetabling, security for costs and other interim points in the case.
Disclosure and Inspection
This is the next stage of the claim where the parties exchange documents that are relevant to the issues. All documents, whether they help your case or affect it adversely, must be disclosed. A Disclosure Statement must be signed by each party confirming that Disclosure obligations have been complied with. The obligation to disclose relevant documents continues throughout the litigation. Even if documents are discovered after the formal disclosure step has taken place you will be required to disclose them to the other party.
This is the opportunity for each side to set out in writing their position, often explaining all the detailed facts in the case. Witness Statements are provided by individuals who have evidence that is key to the issues in the case. The parties exchange witness statements simultaneously.
Depending on the type of case, sometimes it is necessary for experts to be instructed and to provide evidence to assist the Court in deciding the issues in the case. The experts often meet to see if they can find any common ground between them.
Mediation is one of the forms of alternate dispute resolution (“ADR”) available to the parties in litigation. It can take place at any stage in a case, and often takes place shortly after the Case Management Conference. On other occasions, however, it is more appropriate for mediation to take place once expert evidence has been exchanged. The appointed mediator acts as a neutral referee to help the parties work towards settlement. If successful the mediation will result in agreement which ends the litigation, otherwise the case continues.
There are other means of trying to settle proceedings. These include “without prejudice” offers to settle, as well as what are referred to as Part 36 offers. These two types of offer have different costs implications, and it is a tactical decision as to how, if and when such offers are deployed.
In certain cases, the parties’ solicitors need to attend before the Court to discuss how the trial itself will be timetabled and to iron out any procedural issues that have arisen in the case so far.
A large proportion of cases settle before the first day of Trial. For the cases that proceed to Trial, however, this is the forum for the Court to decide the legal issues in the case and to hear the evidence from those individuals who have provided Witness Statements and any expert evidence. In many cases, the Judge will not decide the issues immediately but will reserve Judgement to a later date.
Once the Judge has handed down Judgement and costs awards have been dealt with, the losing party can consider applying for permission to appeal all or part of the Judgement. In County Court cases, the decision of the Circuit Judge is first appealed to a High Court Judge, whose decision can be appealed to the Court of Appeal. In High Court cases, it is the Court of Appeal that first considers the appeal.
Further appeals can, in certain circumstances, be heard by the Supreme Court (formerly the House of Lords) and thereafter by the European Court of Justice or the Privy Council.