Funding—charging for family law services
Produced in partnership with Ursula Rice of Family First Solicitors Ltd
Funding—charging for family law services

The following Family practice note Produced in partnership with Ursula Rice of Family First Solicitors Ltd provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Funding—charging for family law services
  • Contractual relationship
  • Solicitors Regulation Authority 2019 regulatory regime
  • The Law Society
  • The LeO
  • Ways of charging for services
  • Fixed fees
  • Unbundled services
  • Blended rates
  • Hourly rates
  • More...

Contractual relationship

The solicitor and client contract for services is a key element in the business relationship. Handled well, it can boost reputation, handled badly it can damage the relationship and cause loss to the firm, sometimes both financially and to reputation. This Practice Note provides guidance on the underlying principles and how to manage charging for legal advice in family cases.

At the heart of any business is cash flow. The key elements for family lawyers are how much and how to charge for family law services. A firm must be profitable otherwise unprofitability may put the firm at risk.

When reviewing charging, practitioners should consider:

  1. the terms of business, ie the contractual relationship with the client

  2. ways of paying for services, ie hourly rates, fixed fees etc, and

  3. how to receive payment for services

The basis of the solicitor-client retainer is contractual. Details of charges for services need to be in writing and this will create a contractual relationship between solicitor and client. The client care letter, including any separate terms of business, is the contract that evidences the agreement with the client.

See Practice Note: Client care—family law.

Solicitors Regulation Authority 2019 regulatory regime

From 25 November 2019, the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) Standards and Regulations 2019 are in force, replacing the SRA Handbook and Code of Conduct 2011. Mandatory outcomes and non-mandatory indicative behaviours are replaced with

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