Client assessment of solicitor's costs—procedure

The following Dispute Resolution practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Client assessment of solicitor's costs—procedure
  • Basis for assessment of the solicitors' costs
  • Exclusions
  • Detailed assessment of solicitors’ costs—what is required for approval?
  • Illustrative cases
  • Assessment of solicitors’ costs—what is reasonable?
  • Regard to the solicitor’s costs estimate
  • Reliance on the costs estimate
  • Would the client have acted differently
  • Were the costs unusual
  • More...

Client assessment of solicitor's costs—procedure

The provisions relating to the assessment of solicitors' costs are in CPR 46 and CPR PD 46, para 6.1 onwards.

All references to the Solicitors Act 1974 are set out as SA 1974.

This Practice Note considers different issues which arise when a client wants a detailed assessment of the costs claimed by the solicitor in the bills of costs (detailed assessment of solicitor’s costs) under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974 (SA 1974) where a solicitor’s costs will be assessed on an indemnity basis subject to presumptions. The assessment provisions set out in SA 1974, s 70 as well as what constitutes a statute bill in order for the time limits for assessment to apply are covered alongside what the basis of an assessment under CPR 46.9 and what is reasonable. The assessment procedure to obtain an order via a Part 8 claim pursuant to CPR 46.10, as modified by CPR 67.3 and CPR PD 67 (CPR PD 46, para 6.4) is also covered, together with the documents the parties are required to serve (including the breakdown of costs) in accordance with the timetable. The costs of the assessment and the one–fifth rule are also covered along with the possibility of staying proceedings.

For further information on:

  1. statutory assessments of solicitor and client costs, see Practice Note: Solicitor and client costs—statutory assessments

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