Updated guidance from the Legal Ombudsman as to its approach to complaints about legal fees

Guidance-on-Legal-Fees How the Legal Ombudsman approaches fees complaints

One of the major areas for complaint is overall service cost. We don't do detailed cost analysis, but if a complainant wants a detailed forensic bill analysis, we will usually signpost them to the Senior Courts Costs Office, if they are still in time to pursue that avenue.

Legal Ombudsman

The Ombudsman has updated its guidance to dealing with complaints over legal fees, which was first published in 2014. It is directed at the legal profession but is useful to clients in providing examples of the sorts of areas that the Ombudsman will look at, and how it is likely to resolve particular complaints.

We are often asked why, in some cases, an application for assessment under the Solicitors Act 1974 (in which the court determines the amount of the bill) is preferable to a complaint to the Ombudsman.

One of the answers to that question (and there can be a number of different reasons, depending upon the particular circumstances of the case) is that  - as per the quoted section of the guide opposite - the Legal Ombudsman "does not do detailed cost analysis" and if that is what the case needs it will signpost you to the Senior Courts Costs Office (for an assessment under the Solicitors Act) if you are still in time to pursue that avenue. The difficulty with that approach is that the time limits for assessment under the Act are strict and rather short. The absolute entitlement to an assessment expires for example one month from the day upon which you receive the bill, so by the time the Ombudsman suggests going down the detailed assessment route you may already be out of time.

Costs and cost information frequently feature in the complaints we receive. This refreshed guidance sets out the Legal Ombudsman's view of good costs service, supported by a range of case studies which also provide insight into how we resolve complaints.

In this updated edition we look at how the new transparency rules will inform our investigations going forward, as well as some of the common causes of costs complaints such as the information provided, the charging structure and managing changing costs.

Legal Ombudsman
Daniel Latham -v- North Costs Limited (formerly No...
Refund of £2,715.50 from legal fees deducted follo...

Related Posts

News Search

News Tag Cloud

Accident at work Administrators Amanda Cunliffe Solicitors Appeal Assessment ATE premium Austin Kemp Solicitors Ltd Back Injury Bill Breach of retainer Brethertons LLP BT-2 Solicitors Camps Solicitors Carpenters Cash Account Children Claims Management Companies Client Care Letters Closure Cold Callers Collier Law Commercial Comparison Compensation Conditional Fee Agreement Coops Law Cordell & Co Costs Estimates costs law Counsel Counsel's Fees Court CPR 46.9(3) Damages debts Deduction Delivery Up DG Law Din Solicitors Disclosure Divorce Emerald Law Solicitors Employment Tribunal cases Enforcement Equitas Solicitors Estates Exempt Fairwoods Solicitors Family Family Plus Fees Final Bills Fixed Costs Fletchers Solicitors Forster Dean Forum Garvins Law Gowing Law HCC Solicitors Holiday Holiday Sickness Claim Inheritance Act Insolvency Interim Statute Bills Irwin Mitchell LLP JC&A Solicitors Jigsaw Law Keith Smart & Co Lance Mason landmark case Lawyers Legal challenges Legal Expenses Insurance Legal Ombudsman Legend Legal LIP's Litigants in person Litigation Litigation Friend Matrix Solicitors Michael Lewin Solicitors Michael Rose & Baylis Solicitors Money Laundering Regulations Motorbike Accident MTA Solicitors No Win No Fee North Solicitors Limited Overcharging partners Personal Injury Pilkington Shaw Solicitors Price Probate Progressive Solicitors Proportionality Protected Party QC Reasonable Notice rebuttable presumption Refund Representation Retainer Richard Slade & Company Right to conduct litigation in respect of costs Rights of Audience RJ Gill Solicitors Road Traffic Accident Rotherham s.68 Solicitors Act s.74(3) Solicitors Act 1974 Scott Rees & Co Senior Courts Costs Office Seth Lovis & Co Simpson Millar LLP six minute units solicitor solicitors SRA Statute Bills Success Fee success fees Supreme Court tax tax management Termination Terms of Business Thorneycrofts Time limits trades Union Unison Transparency True Solicitors Turner & White Solicitors Unusual Items Viceroy Law Woodwards Solicitors

About Us

We are a team of legal costs experts with over 60 years' experience.

We have dealt with costs arising from almost every legal specialism.

We have conducted cases challenging solicitor's costs at all levels up to and including the Court of Appeal.

We are not part of a firm of solicitors and are therefore entirely independent.

Latest News

Links