Facts about ‘no win, no fee*’
We’ve all read those banner claims on the personal injury web sites and wondered what it really means. ‘No win, no fee*’ is properly called the Conditional Fee Arrangement (CFA) and refers to the payment arrangements and pay scale to solicitors or legal firms representing the litigant in a personal injury compensation claim.
How does ‘no win, no fee*’ work?
For the litigant, it means that if their claim for compensation is unsuccessful and there is no award, then he is not liable for his solicitor’s legal fees. The solicitor is paid under a separate insurance policy.
Why is the legal profession worried about the reduction of CFA fees coming in April 2013?
They are worried because they fear the new lower scale will not cover the minimum time requirement a solicitor needs to prepare the case. They fear that it will open the door to a cost cutting culture, also that many smaller law firms will be priced out and larger firms who offer a ‘one size fits all’ approach to each individual case will proliferate.
David (hors de combat) v. Goliath
These trends may not be in the best interest of the little guy. Although it is generally recognised that something must be done about the epidemic of whiplash injury claims, some members of the legal profession fear that the Goliath insurance companies, naturally reluctant to pay out a penny more than they have to, will clobber David round the head and trample him to boot, adding injury to injury.
What can we do?
All is not lost yet. Personal injury law firms such as Accident Advice Helpline offer quick and easy access to information about the eligibility of a claim and can, in some cases, assess what it may be worth. All our legal partners operate on a ‘no win, no fee*’ basis, helping to take some of the worry out of starting a claim. For any client who may be concerned about being liable for court costs and the fees of “the other side”, it may be possible to take out insurance to cover these and a client should take their solicitor’s advice. Call Accident Advice Helpline free on 0800 689 0500 or 0333 500 0993 from a mobile phone for free, no-obligation advice about making a claim.
Date Published: February 15, 2013
Author: David Brown