Conditional fee agreements after 1 April 2013—personal injury and clinical negligence
Conditional fee agreements after 1 April 2013—personal injury and clinical negligence

The following Practice Compliance practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Conditional fee agreements after 1 April 2013—personal injury and clinical negligence
  • Key terms
  • What is a CFA?
  • Success fees
  • Requirements for all CFAs
  • Additional requirements for personal injury/clinical negligence CFAs with a success fee
  • Do you need a risk assessment?
  • Calculating the success fee
  • Recovering the success fee and premium from the opponent
  • Charging your client for any shortfall
  • More...

This Practice Note explains how the conditional fee regime operates for personal injury and clinical negligence matters including:

  1. what a CFA is

  2. the regulatory requirements when entering into a CFA

  3. when success fees and insurance premiums are recoverable inter partes

  4. exceptions and transitional provisions

  5. grey areas

A separate Practice Note covers CFAs in non-personal injury matters: Conditional fee agreements after 1 April 2013—non-personal injury.

The regime is the product of ss 44–48 of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO 2012), which amend section 58 of the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990 (CLSA 1990). There are no Conditional Fee Regulations but CLSA 1990, s 58 should be read in conjunction with:

  1. Conditional Fee Agreements Order 2013, SI 2013/689 (CFA Order 2013)

  2. Recovery of Costs Insurance Premiums in Clinical Negligence Proceedings (No 2) Regulations 2013, SI 2013/739

  3. relevant requirements in the SRA’s regulatory regime

Success fee and costs insurance premium cannot be recovered from your client's opponent, although this is subject to transitional provisions and there are limited exceptions which are explained below.

Key terms

CFAConditional Fee Agreement
CLSA 1990Courts and Legal Services Act 1990
Base costsThe amount you charge for the work you do (excluding disbursements and VAT), usually calculated as (1) number of hours spent on the client's matter x (2) hourly rate
Costs insurance premiumCost of purchasing insurance
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