Although not quite commonplace, Solicitors Act 1974 (‘statutory’) assessments are an increasingly regular feature on the costs landscape. Compulsory costs budgeting combined with the new Jackson proportionality test, undoubtedly caused the gap between the successful litigant’s costs spend and cost recovery to widen. These changes, together with increased application of fixed costs and the relative high cost of some of the alternatives to CFA funding, lead inevitably to a greater willingness by a greater number of clients to scrutinise lawyers’ bills and to tackle perceived excess.
The presumptions and procedures for statutory assessment are not generally very well understood. However, with more than 20 years’ experience, our directors Michael Heslin and Afqar Dean are two of the most experienced practitioners in the field, and have dealt with a great many statutory assessments of varying difficulty and value. We act for statutory costs claimants and defendants alike.
We also offer costs monitoring and management services for regular or large-scale users of legal services. We ensure, as each matter proceeds, that the law firm’s bills are reasonable and that they comply with ethical, legal, and other agreed and fair billing policies. Recourse to Solicitors Act 1974 detailed assessment proceedings should be and extremely rare event in cases where the client’s legal spend has been monitored in this way.
The DeNovo team is ready to assist so please contact us by phone on 020 3693 7186 or by email on email@example.com