We represent commercial and private clients and are dedicated to finding solutions to all types of dispute. Our emphasis is on establishing a close client relationship, and on offering clear, relevant and practical advice and guidance. We strive to seek efficient and effective solutions to disputes in ways which minimise legal costs and, in the case of commercial clients, promote business objectives such as the maintenance of business relationships and reputation.
We see the court as an absolute last resort. Wherever possible, therefore, we seek to resolve disputes amicably and without recourse to litigation. We will keep in mind the possibility of a negotiated or other settlement both before and during any legal proceedings. To that end we offer mediation, adjudication and other forms of alternative dispute resolution.
Where court proceedings are necessary, we have experience in representing clients in most types of High Court and County Court litigation. We can undertake or arrange court advocacy on behalf of clients as necessary.
The areas of work we cover include bringing and defending contract and commercial disputes, debt collection, insolvency, partnership disputes, defamation, negligence claims, boundary disputes, landlord and tenant claims, real estate disputes and mortgage repossession claims. We have full access to many barristers and experts and where appropriate and relevant we will engage their services after agreeing with the client in advance their identity and fees.
We provide clients with clear and realistic written cost estimates in respect of any work we are instructed to undertake, and will frequently update those estimates as the case proceeds. We also keep under constant review with clients the merits of the client’s and the opponent’s case, and will compare with the client the cost and risk of proceeding with a case relative to the possible benefits of doing so.
Costs in Debt Recovery cases
As far as our costs for work of this nature are concerned, it is not practicable to undertake work at a fixed rate. Furthermore, as each case is unique with its own specific features and/or issues, it is impossible to provide a generalisation of the cost that could be incurred. Each case would be assessed on its merits and you would be provided with a costs estimate based upon that information. The hourly charging rate of Mr James is currently £200 per hour, plus VAT (currently at the rate of 20%). Routine telephone calls and letters would be charged at £20 each plus VAT.
If proceedings were necessary, various court fees would be incurred at different stages of the case. These are fixed by the government and vary from time to time. A full list of the fees are contained in the Government Publication EX50AHMCT on hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk or by following this direct link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/fees-in-the-civil-and-family-courts-main-fees-ex50
Court fees do not attract VAT.
Our range of services include collation and consideration of all relevant information relating to the debt and thereafter a letter of claim is sent to the debtor. Subsequently, there may be further correspondence relating to any dispute as to the extent of the debt or proposals for payment. If a settlement cannot be achieved, then ultimately it may be necessary to issue proceedings usually in the County Court but sometimes depending upon the level of the debt in the High Court. We would prepare and issue any claim form, advise and consider any defence or counter-claim filed by the debtor and if the matter was contested proceed with all necessary steps to trial. If the claim was uncontested, we would enter judgment on your behalf which is a Court Order requiring the debtor to make payment. Certain costs can be recovered from the debtor but they do not usually cover all of the costs that you would incur and in particular in relation to claims falling within the Small Claims Court limit (currently £10,000) you would only be able to recover the court fees that you incur. In those cases, it may be more cost effective for you to utilise the court online money claims service. We can provide you with further information in relation to money claims online on request.