3 Things your Solicitor Won’t Tell You.
When bringing a compensation claim there are certain things your solicitor won’t tell you. These secrets are not damaging to your claim and will not put you at any risk for not knowing them, many legal professionals wish they could tell clients this information but don’t due to the professional nature of the relationship. However, today I have decided to share the top three pieces of information that I have noticed most legal professionals have confessed that they wish they could tell their clients.
Your Solicitor Will Not Get Paid For All Of The Work They Do.
When most people think of legal fees they think of overinflated hourly rates and fat cat lawyers smoking your hard-earned money This could not be further from the truth. While a solicitor’s hourly rate may seem high when first reviewed, this rate is actually what is advised by the Law Society and reflects the amount of specialized training and expertise your solicitor will have.
If you employ a solicitor on a No Win No Fee Agreement and you win your case, then the Defendant will pay the bulk of your legal costs. Your solicitor will submit a bill to the Defendants which will detail all the hours that they have worked on your case, what jobs were done and when. They will then be forced to negotiate with the Defendant and during these negotiations your solicitor will end up reducing their bill. This means they will never be paid for the amount of work they have actually done.
The part of the legal fees you pay is a percentage (no more than 25%) of your compensation. This will, hopefully, help your solicitor make up some of their losses. A quarter of your compensation is a lot to pay, your solicitor will understand this, and no solicitor enjoys taking their client’s compensation from them. But if they did not then they would be working at an even greater loss and would not be able to survive as a business which would result in less access to justice for clients.
They Want To Keep You Updated More Than They Can
As said above your solicitor will not get paid for the amount of time they have worked. This means they must be extremely strict when they budget their time, to the point where some firms micromanage every minute of the working day.
They will keep you updated when there is a development in your case, they are very unlikely, unless they are being paid privately by you and you instruct them to, to call you once a week to let you know that they are still waiting to hear back from the other side or the third party expert or the barrister.
This is unfortunate as this is one of the most common types of complaint made by clients against solicitors. Most clients want regular updates and are increasingly upset when they go weeks between telephone calls or letters, which is understandable. However, solicitors are not ignoring client’s they simply cannot afford to contact you as much as they would like. Your case is important, to both you and your solicitor and your solicitor will give it all the attention it needs to get you the best possible outcome, they just might not be able to contact you as often as they would like.
They Will Go To Trial For You If Needed But Will Work So That You Don’t Have To.
When a solicitor advises you to settle your claim it is not because they are trying to avoid Court due to laziness or any other personal reason. Going to Court is always a risk, there are events that can happen at the last minute which make a strong case much weaker and vice versa. However, regardless of how strong your case is there will always be an element of risk involved in going all the way to trial with your case. You could very easily walk away with nothing as a lot depends on the view of the Judge on the day of your trial.
All legal professionals will understand this risk and will try to settle your claim before it goes to Court. They are not trying to force a settlement to avoid Court because they don’t want to go, or for any other selfish reason, they are trying to protect you from potentially losing everything that you and your solicitor have worked so hard to build. When you settle outside of Court you will remove that risk completely and win your case without having to attend Trial.
As you will see there are certain pieces of information your solicitor simply cannot address with you due to the nature of the relationship. They are there to be professional, not complain to you about how cases are funded or the restrictions on their time. But it is important that more people understand the way cases have to be run due to costs limitations, as a greater understanding here will allow you to better develop your relationship with your solicitor. They work hard to maintain good client relationships and unfortunately there are more and more restrictions with each passing day on what they can and cannot afford to do. While it is distressing that costs have such an impact on individual cases it is the sad reality of the situation.