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Funding Your Case

Funding Your Case

 

Duncan Lewis appreciates that funding your case can be a daunting and unexpected expense. With this in mind we try to be as transparent as we can when it comes to our fee structure and how your case incurs costs.

 

There are various ways in which your case can be funded and we hope this page provides clarity in respect of this so you can feel confident about your case moving forward.

 

Legal Aid

 

Unfortunately, Legal Aid is extremely restrictive when it comes to the preparation of road traffic cases. There is often work that is required or expert witnesses needed who are simply deemed to be too expensive by the Legal Aid agency. If we are unable to instruct the relevant experts in your case it significantly reduces the chance of a successful outcome. As such, our motor law specialist does not accept legally aided cases but will be more than happy to provide initial advice for you free of charge.

 

If you require legal aid then please contact our crime team

 

Paying Privately

 

Road Traffic Law is a niche area of expertise and there are very few genuine specialists in the UK. There are a limited number of expert witnesses who possess the relevant expertise in the breathalyser equipment and police sample-analysis procedures. Road Traffic barristers are also in short supply and if your case proceeds to trial it is crucial you have a barrister who possesses sufficient legal knowledge to effectively argue the more technical aspects of road traffic law.

 

If you choose to instruct our motor law specialist then the usual way to fund your case is by paying privately.

 

Paying for your case privately means you can rest assured that you will receive the best possible representation throughout the duration of your case. You will have direct access to your lawyer via telephone and email to provide updates on your case or simply peace of mind. We can also ensure that when your case requires an expert witness or a particular barrister we will have the freedom to instruct those best suited to your case without the red tape imposed in legally aided cases.

 

Our Crime Solicitor Neil Sargeant has specialised exclusively in road traffic law since 2008. He has maintained close relationships with the country’s leading expert witnesses and barristers and prides himself on the service levels he provides to his clients.

 

What Does Your Quote Include?

 

At the outset of your case, Neil will provide you with an estimate of costs that he expects your case to incur. Cases relating to drugs or alcohol where you intend to defend the allegation can often last between 6 – 12 months and the total costs are likely to be between £4000 - £8000 + VAT. This estimate is for the total cost by the time your case concludes and will include the following:

 

  • Your lawyer’s time for preparing the case charged at an hourly rate;
  • Any expert witness costs;
  • Barristers’ fees for each hearing
  • Any other anticipated disbursements (e.g. Fees for obtaining medical records)

 

This fee is not taken from you in one lump sum but is paid in instalments whilst the case is ongoing. We require an initial payment of £1000 + VAT once you instruct us. This is an interim payment which is held on your client account towards the anticipated end-costs. As your case proceeds, work is conducted on your case that will incur fees. Once the monies in your client account are exhausted, further payment is then required to continue preparation of your case.

 

We have tried to anticipate as many eventualities as possible when estimating this quote to ensure that there are no hidden costs during or at the conclusion of your case. We try to be as flexible as we can when it comes to payment of our fees and we are often able to agree payment plans so you can spread the cost.

 

Each case is unique, and the cost will reflect that, so we would urge you to speak to Neil about the specifics of your case.

 

Insurance

 

If you currently pay for any insurance then we urge you to check if the policy includes “legal expenses cover”. If such cover exists then your insurance provider may agree to cover your legal costs so please check your policy to see if it is included.

 

We urge you to check any insurance policies you have, however we find that such protection is most often included in home and car insurance policies.

 

In the event that you have legal expenses protection, your insurer may claim that you can only benefit from the cover if you instruct a firm from a panel selected by them. This is, quite simply, untrue. The Insurance Companies (Legal Expenses) Act is clear that you are free to choose your own representative despite what your insurer may advise you. We have represented numerous clients under legal expenses cover despite them having been told that they cannot instruct us.

 

If you think you are covered by legal expenses protection or you are unsure then please contact us to discuss in more detail and we will be happy to help you.

 

Pleading Guilty

 

For any case in which you want to plead guilty (including totting up) Duncan Lewis can offer representation at a fixed fee between £1000 – 1500 + VAT depending on the allegation. *

 

This level of representation includes:

 

  • Untimed and unlimited consultations with your lawyers for advice and support;
  • Meticulously prepared mitigation;
  • A specialist Barrister/advocate;
  • Thorough advice on supporting evidence to assist mitigation; and
  • Thorough advice on court procedure and what you can expect on your day in court.

 

Dangerous Driving Cases (including those involving a fatality)

 

Dangerous driving is one of the most complex cases a motorist can face and defending the allegation can be an expensive venture depending on the amount of evidence involved. Costs are also impacted by the increased number of hearings such cases require and the amount of preparation work involved.

 

An hourly rate will be applied to the work conducted in your case and the total costs are likely to be between £10’000 - £20’000 if you decide to defend your case. We strongly urge you to check your insurance policy to see if you have any legal expenses cover, which is explained above.

 

If you intend to plead guilty to dangerous driving then we charge a fixed fee of £2500 + VAT

 

*This quote is based on only one hearing being required which is typical for cases involving a guilty plea. If, for whatever reason, more than one hearing is required then an additional £300+ VAT is required per hearing. We do not expect guilty pleas to require more than one hearing however.

 


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