If you have a serious matter please ask to speak to a senior solicitor/partner
Our aim is to be transparent on costs at all times with our clients.
Legal aid public funding is available generally in some cases based on the merits of a case justifying the grant of public funding. If you have to go to court the test will also require you to have a means income test.
You can be granted legal aid without ( low income ) or subject to a contribution towards the cost of the case ( higher income )
Our principle is to always provide an excellent service to our clients. Legal aid funds providing a reasonable service. The time, costs and work undertaken has to be justified as this is public funding. We are permitted to incur such costs as necessary.
Some clients do not qualify for legal aid based on the fact that the case may not be serious enough, their income is above the eligibility criteria or prefer to fund their case privately.
We can attend the police station with you under the legal aid scheme. Attendances at the police station are non-means tested.
Prior to Covid attendance at the police station was usually in person. Attendance at present is now usually conducted virtually in order to deal with the risks of Covid. We sometimes attend in person if strictly required because of the circumstances.
Under the legal aid scheme, we are required to assign a representative to attend the police station with you. The representative attending will be an admitted solicitor, a paralegal a trainee solicitor or Legal Executive.
Legal Aid normally only covers the physical or virtual attendance at the Police Station if required and a consultation at the police station before and after the attendance.
This scheme does not extend to meetings with you prior to and after the Police Station attendance at a separate meeting, however you can pay for this service on a private basis.
Some clients prefer a service whereby we discuss the case well in advance of the police station attendance with them and away from the police station in a private meeting. This is as referred to above on a private fee basis.
In private cases we can also guarantee the attendance of the most senior solicitor available to attend the police station with you (including virtual attendances). These lawyers are not always available and to arrange for them to act for you, we are able to do so privately and not on legal aid, the fees for such work can be agreed in advance. We can have a private meeting with you before the police station and cover your case at the police station under legal aid or privately as agreed with you.
Private Court Attendance
In order to qualify for legal aid, the case must be serious, and you must be financially eligible. Please see the legal aid agency website for details of eligibility and financial limits. We can also provide you with further details. Solicitors undertaking legal aid work at court are likely to have multiple cases and can only do work that is reasonably required as this is publicly funded work. You will not always be able to choose the most senior Barristers or necessarily the most senior lawyers. You will not be able to have repeat meetings that may not be strictly necessary. You may not be able to order reports that are not fully justifiable at public expense.
If you pay a solicitor on a private basis to attend court with you then once the fee is agreed, we can do everything that you reasonably require, and our professional rules allow. It is likely you will receive a much thorough service if it is required. You can also pay for whichever solicitor or Barrister you wish. You can also order and pay for whatever experts you require. We can discuss further if clarification is required.
You are under no obligation to accept a private service if you qualify for a legal aid service. We always work tirelessly for all our clients.