Transfer of CFAs when law firms close, merge or change status [Archived]
Produced in partnership with Sue Brown
Transfer of CFAs when law firms close, merge or change status [Archived]

The following Personal Injury guidance note Produced in partnership with Sue Brown provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Transfer of CFAs when law firms close, merge or change status [Archived]
  • Firm 1 assigns its personal injury caseload to Firm 2, Firm 1 continues to trade
  • Agency
  • Firm 1 changes its legal status and becomes Firm 2
  • After-the-event insurance
  • Notice of funding

ARCHIVED: This Practice Note has been archived and is not maintained. See Practice Notes: Conditional fee agreements—definition and requirements, Types of conditional fee agreements,Conditional fee agreements—assignment of a CFA,Conditional fee agreements after 1 April 2013 (personal injury and clinical negligence).

Issues around existing Conditional Fee Agreements (CFAs), particularly pre-Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (pre-LASPO 2012) CFAs, can arise where the firm originally acting under a CFA prior to 1 April 2013 closes or changes its status. See also Practice Note: Terminating retainers and assignment and variation of CFAs.

For detailed guidance on what constitutes an assignment, see Practice Note: Conditional fee agreements—assignment of a CFA.

The question of whether a CFA can be validly assigned from one firm to another was first considered in the case of Jenkins. This case was concerned with a situation where a client follows an individual solicitor with whom they have a relationship of trust and confidence from one firm to another. There it was held that the CFA could be validly assigned. While the decision in Jenkins was widely criticised, it was applied intermittently by the courts. The decision of HHJ Wood in Jones v Spire Healthcare Ltd appeared to have extended that application to the case of a client’s case being transferred to a different fee earner at a new firm following