No Win, No Fee – What does it really mean?
If you have been involved in an accident you will have noticed advertisements and websites featuring the term ‘No Win, No Fee’. But what does this really mean? It may not mean the same thing each time you see it and therefore it is important to fully understand exactly the terms of a ‘No Win, No Fee’ Agreement so you know exactly what you are signing up to.
Why No Win No Fee?
When the Government abolished legal aid for personal injury claims they wanted to bring in a method of funding that allowed an injured victim to make a claim for personal injury compensation without having to incur expense. Previously, legal aid had covered all costs and expense whilst the claim was progressing, and once the claim was won the Solicitor would recover the costs from the other party’s insurance company. The legal aid board then received all of the money they had spent back from the solicitor that had been acting for you. When the Government decided to abolish legal aid for personal injury claims they knew that they needed to replace the funding with another form that would work equally as well for the injured victim. Their answer was the ‘No Win, No Fee’ Agreement.
How does No Win, No Fee Work In Practice?
In practice, if you are injured and wish to pursue a claim, you will normally be offered to make a claim with a ‘No Win, No Fee’ Agreement, properly known as a Conditional Fee Agreement. This agreement allows you to take the claim without paying costs while the claim progresses, but then if the claim is ultimately successful your Solicitor is entitled to receive their costs as well as a ‘success fee’ for the fact that they have pursued a claim (often for as long as two to three years) without any payment of their costs whilst doing so. The success fee recognises the fact that the Solicitor has not received any payment for their work for two years whereas a normal business person would charge for work as they did it.
What does No Win, No Fee really mean?
Whereas part of the statement ‘No Win, No Fee’ is self explanatory, what you must consider is what happens if you win a case. If you do not win the Solicitor cannot charge you under a Conditional Fee Agreement for any of their time (you may have to pay some of the expenses). However, if you do win your claim, they may be able to make a claim for additional charges from you. Therefore, if you have been injured it is extremely important that you find out exactly what the ‘No Win, No Fee’ Agreement you are being offered means to you. Do not assume that it will mean that you pay nothing if you win or lose your claim, as this could cost you if you make a successful claim. Ask your ‘No Win, No Fee’ Lawyer exactly what it means in every situation, and only proceed with them if you are happy with their response.
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Our No Win, No Fee service
With Carter & Carter Solicitors, you can be confident that if I offer you a ‘No Win, No Fee’ Agreement, it means the following:-
- If you do not win your claim, I will not charge you for my time investigating it
- If you win your claim, I will not charge you any additional sums than those that I recover from the insurance company.
- You will keep 100% of your compensation
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Put us to the test by either contacting us now. We would be delighted to hear from you and to help you pursue your case – free of charge and in a way that is truly responsive to your needs.