Round Hall

Sample Section 150 Notice and GDPR Notice

 

At DFG, we understand the difficulties faced by solicitors in trying to comply with the numerous and often onerous requirements placed on a solicitor concerning fees, money laundering and data protection.  In order to assist you, we have drawn a draft template that you may use and amend accordingly.  This letter represent your first letter to your client.  You will have to send further letters advising on fees and all outlays as outlined in section 150. 

 

Please note that we accept no liability in this letter and also solicitors should review our draft and amend accordingly to ensure that all legal obligations have been complied with. 


 

 

 

 

PRIVATE & CONFIDENTIAL

OPEN ADDRESSEE ONLY

Name of Client

Address of Client

 

Date                                                                Our Ref:                                           Your Ref:

 

NOTICE ISSUED IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTION 150 OF LEGAL SERVICE REGULATION ACT 2015 and encompassing SECTION 68 OF SOLICITORS (AMENDMENT) ACT, 1994

 

CONTRACT FOR SERVICES

 

Re: Name of Case

 

Record No.

 

 

Dear Client,

 

I thank you for your instructions in connection with the above matter and we would be pleased to act for you.

 

I am happy to take your case on a no foul no fee basis. This means that if I cannot bring your case to a successful outcome, I will not raise any fee; however, you will still be liable for outlay.

 

 

Important Information:

 

This Notice is sent to you in accordance with Section 150 of the Legal Service Regulation Act 2015.

 

This requires us to disclose the legal costs which will be incurred in acting on your behalf in relation to the relevant matter.

 

Where it is not reasonably practicable to disclose such legal costs, we will set out the basis on which we will calculate the legal costs to be incurred.

 

You will be advised of the costs to be incurred as soon as this becomes practicable.

 

Please be aware that this case will be run on a no Foal no Fee basis. Should you withdraw instructions you will be liable for all fees and same must be discharged before your file will be forwarded on to another firm.

 

 

Basis on Which Charges are to be Made

 

Solicitors charges are generally calculated by reference to the time spent on the matter in question, the seniority of the individual(s) carrying out the work and the nature of the work concerned. The level of charge will also depend on:-

 

(a) the complexity and novelty of the issues involved;

 

(b) the skill and specialised knowledge relevant to the matter which the legal practitioner has applied to the matter;

 

(c) the time and labour that the legal practitioner has reasonably expended on the matter;

 

(d) the urgency attached to the matter by the client and whether this requires or required the legal practitioner to give priority to that matter over other matters;

 

(e) the place and the circumstances in which the matter was transacted;

 

(f) the number, importance and complexity of the documents that the legal practitioner was required to draft, prepare or examine;

 

(g) where money, property or an interest in property is involved, the amount of the money, or the value of the property or the interest in the property concerned;

 

(h) whether or not there is an agreement to limit the liability of the legal practitioner pursuant to section 48 of the Legal Service Regulation Act 2015;

 

(i) whether or not the legal practitioner necessarily undertook research or investigative work and, if so, the timescale within which such work was required to be completed;

 

(j) the use and costs of expert witnesses or other expertise engaged by the legal practitioner and whether such costs were necessary and reasonable.

 

In addition to the Solicitors’ fees, there will be items of outlay which will have to be discharged by you such as Barristers, Engineers and Doctors fees, VAT and Stamp Duty where applicable. Such fees will be charged on the basis of the fees set out by the relevant expert or Authority.

 

 

Charges Incurred to Date

 

We are required to specify the amount of costs which have been incurred up to the date of this Notice as certified by the appropriate Solicitor. These costs will be set out here where practicable.

 

Where this is not reasonably practicable, such costs will be calculated on the basis as set out above. Value-Added-Tax will be applied at the set rate which is currently 23%.

  

 

Fixed Costs 

 

We are required to specify the amount of costs to be of a fixed nature or otherwise certain to be incurred as certified by the appropriate Solicitor. These costs will be set out here where practicable. Where this is not reasonably practicable, we are required to set out the basis on which they are to be charged.

 

Personal Injuries Assessment Board Application: €45.00

 

Circuit High Court Fixed Fees:

Stamp duty amounts are as follows;

- Issuing Personal Injuries Summons: €130.00

- Filing of each Affidavit: €15.00 for each Affidavit

- Commissioner’s Fees for swearing of each Affidavit €10.00 plus €2.00 per exhibit

- Filing of each Notice of Motion or other Notice: €60.00

- Notice to Produce €60.00

- Notice of Trial: €120.00

 

Principal High Court Fixed Fees:

Stamp duty amounts are as follows;

- Issuing Personal Injuries Summons: €190.00

- Filing of each Affidavit: €20.00 for each Affidavit

- Commissioner’s Fees for swearing of each Affidavit €10.00 plus €2.00 per exhibit

- Filing of each Notice of Motion or other Notice: €60.00

- Notice to Produce €60.00

- Notice of Trial: €60.00

- Setting Down Docket: €250.00

 

Additional costs may arise. When this occurs, the charges will be based on the fees set out by the relevant Court, State Body, Company or other entity. Value-Added-Tax will be applied at the set rate which is currently 23% where applicable.

 

 

Barristers (Counsels), Experts and Legal Costs Accountants

 

Generally speaking, a barrister, also known as counsel, will be instructed to draw pleadings, Notices of Motion, and some Affidavits.

Prior to setting this matter to hearing, your case will be sent to a barrister for Advice on Proofs. These are directions from the barrister on what is needed to bring your case to a successful conclusion.

A barrister will also be briefed (given written instructions and copies of all relevant documents) for the purpose of hearings of Motions and for any settlement meetings and/or the trial of the action.

As your case progresses, it will be necessary to instruct a variety of experts to prepare expert reports to support your case.

 

Typical experts include:

a) Consultants

b) Engineers

c) Architects

d) Actuaries

 

You may have costs of Motions awarded in your favour or against you. It may be necessary to instruct a legal costs accountant to prepare a bill and advocate costs in your favour or to oppose costs claimed against you. Should you be successful in the overall action, a legal costs accountant may be instructed to draw a bill of costs and seek to recover your legal costs and outlay against the paying party.

 

Before engaging a practising barrister, expert, legal costs accountant or a provider of any other service, we are required to;

 

- ascertain the likely cost or basis of cost of engaging that barrister, expert, legal costs accountant or service provider

 

- provide you with the information when obtained

 

- obtain your approval to engage the relevant person

 

 

 

Future Costs 

 

We are required to specify the amount of costs likely to be incurred as certified by the appropriate Solicitor. These costs will be set out here where practicable. Where this is not reasonably practicable, such costs will be calculated on the basis set out above. Value-Added-Tax will be applied at the set rate which is currently 23%.

 

  

Increased Costs  

 

If we become aware of any matter that would make the legal costs likely to be incurred significantly greater than those disclosed or indicated in a Notice provided under Section 150 of the Legal Services Regulation Act 2015, we are obliged to provide you with a new notice.

The Steps and Stages of your case and potential costs

 

(1) The initial work to be done typically involves preparing a letter of claim to the Defendant(s), obtaining a medical Report and preparing an Application to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board. The Solicitor’s costs arising out of this part of the proceedings will be determined on the basis set out above, as is the Personal Injuries Board fee. The medical expert’s fee varies and is based on the level and experience of the particular medical practitioner.

 

(2) If liability is not admitted it will likely be necessary to instruct an Engineer in order to prepare an expert Report. An Engineer’s fee usually comprises a fee for visiting the site of the accident which may be based on the number of hours taken. The Report fee will generally be a standard fee but can vary depending on complexity and additional work required.

 

(3) The next stage involves instructing a Barrister on your behalf in order to have legal proceedings prepared. The prepared Summons will then be finalised and served. An Affidavit of Verification will also be prepared. The Solicitors fee for this will be charged on the basis set out above. The Barrister’s fee is generally based on the complexity of the issues required to be considered in preparing the proceedings. Fixed costs will apply as set out above.

 

(4) From here there are generally a number of scenarios which may occur, these include but are not limited to the following;

 

(a) The matter may settle, this typically involves attendance by Solicitors and Barristers for both parties. The Solicitors fee for this will be charged on the basis set out above. The Barrister’s settlement fee is generally based on the complexity of the issues and the amount of documentation that needs to be considered in preparation for the settlement.

 

(b) Considering the Defendant’s Notice for Particulars (request for additional information) and replying to same by way of Replies to Particulars and preparing Affidavit of Verification. The Solicitors fee for this will be charged on the basis set out above. Depending on the types of queries raised in the Notice for Particulars, it may be necessary to have the Barrister prepare the Replies. The Barrister’s fee will depend on the complexity and numbers of issues raised.

 

(c) Considering the Defendant’s Defence and then preparing a Notice for Particulars where necessary. The Solicitors fee for this will be charged on the basis set out above. Depending on the nature of the Defence, it may be necessary to obtain advices from a Barrister. This fee would likely depend on the length of the advices provided.

 

(d) Papers will be prepared and sent to the Barrister seeking advices regarding the next steps to be taken. These advices are known as ‘Advice on Proofs’. The Solicitors fee for this will be charged on the basis set out above. The Barrister’s fee is generally based on the complexity of the issues and the amount of consideration required in preparing the advices.

 

(e) Either side may seek discovery of documentation, this may be done voluntarily or by application to the Court where necessary. Where a request has been received it will be necessary to gather the documentation and prepare an Affidavit of Discovery. This will usually involve obtaining medical records from your medical attendees. Where a request for Discovery has been made it will be necessary to review the documentation received from the other side. The Solicitors fee for this will be charged on the basis set out above. The fee will largely depend on the number of documents required to be obtained or reviewed. A Barrister may be required during this process either to prepare the request or to consider a request. This will generally depend on the number and nature of documents concerned and whether or not a Court attendance is required.

 

(f) Further settlement discussions may take place, again requiring attendance of Solicitors and Barristers. The Solicitors fee for this will be charged on the basis set out above. The Barrister’s settlement fee is generally based on the complexity of the issues and the amount of documentation that needs to be considered in preparation for the settlement.

 

(g) If the matter has not settled at this stage, further or updated medical Reports may be obtained. Medical Reports will generally be obtained throughout as and when required. The medical expert’s fee will usually be based on the level and experience of the particular practitioner.

 

(h) If you are self employed it may be necessary to instruct an Actuary to prepare a Report in order to calculate past and future loss of earnings. The Actuary’s fee varies and typically depends on complexities to be considered.

 

(i) It will then be necessary to compile all items of expenses incurred by you arising out of the original incident. The Solicitor’s fee will be charged on the basis set out above.

 

(j) A Notice of Trial will then be prepared and filed with the Court. Depending on what Court your case will be heard, further documentation may be required to be filed. The Solicitor’s fee will be charged on the basis set out above.

 

(k) Arrangements for witnesses to attend Court will then be made and the Defendant’s witness list and expert Reports will be reviewed. The Solicitor’s fee will be charged on the basis set out above.

 

(l) A brief of papers will then be prepared for the Barrister to allow him/her to prepare for the hearing. The Solicitor’s fee will be charged on the basis set out above.

 

(m) Court will then be attended for the hearing where the matter may either settle where you agree to same, conclude after one day’s hearing, or continue for a number of days. The Solicitor’s fee will be charged on the basis set out above. The Barrister’s fee will vary depending on the complexity of the issues involved, the amount of documentation to be considered and the number of the days in Court.

 

(n) Additional Solicitor, Barrister and expert fees may arise through your case. For example, where it is necessary to compel the Defendant(s) to comply with a request, or where additional medical Reports are required due to your injuries. These fees here will generally be charged on a similar basis as above.

 

 

Withdrawing your case

 

Should you discontinue or withdraw the proceedings prior to obtaining a settlement or Court Ruling, then you will be responsible for the payment of our charges, including expert witness fees, Barrister fees or any other service fees. You will also likely be required to pay the costs of the other party.

 

Under these circumstances, where the withdrawal or discontinuance occurs up to or after the filing of a Defence, but before any other steps have been taken, such withdrawal or discontinuance is not a defence to a subsequent claim. However, the Court may order a stay on subsequent proceedings which are the same or substantially the same as the discontinued proceedings, where costs arising out of the discontinued proceedings are outstanding.

 

 

Possible Liability to Pay Costs of Other Parties in Litigation

 

You should bear in mind that you will likely become liable for the other parties costs in the event of your:-

(i) Losing the case;

(ii) Compromising the case;

(iii) The Court failing to award you your costs or a portion of your costs;

(iv) The Court awarding costs against you;

(v) Where your claim is against more than one party, you may be required to pay the legal costs of the party/parties which you were unsuccessful against. Typically, where the Court orders you to pay the costs of such party/parties, a further Order will be granted requiring the party whom you were successful against to pay the costs of the other parties. However, if the party required to pay is not in a financial position to do so, the onus will revert back to you to pay the costs of the other party/parties.

 

 

Responsibility for Charges in Litigation Matters 

 

In this case you remain responsible for the payment of our charges even where you reach a settlement with the Plaintiff / Defendant or third party or they are ordered to pay costs.

 

The amount which the Plaintiff / Defendant or third party may agree and or may be directed to pay does not cover all of our charges. Should you be successful in your action, the Court will likely award costs in your favour. The recoverable costs are known as party and party costs and usually amount to a sum less than what you will be liable for on a solicitor and own client basis.

 

Following the conclusion of the case we will furnish you with an invoice for our fees and all third party fees and outlay to include experts and barristers. You are entitled to a full bill of costs and should you request same one will be furnished to you within one month of the request. If you are agreeable to the fees we will seek your permission to deduct the fees from any settlement and award you may have received as a result of a successful action. If you are not happy with the fees you have the right to have the fees taxed/adjudicated before the Taxing Master/Legal Costs Adjudicator. This is done by way of a Requisition to Tax/ to adjudicate. You may also make a complaint to the Law Society of Ireland.

 

The process of recovering party and party costs on your behalf may involve additional fees and outlay such as the costs of instructing a legal costs accountants (an expert in drawing legal bills and advocating for recovery of same), stamp duty, etc. You will be liable for any fees raised by a Legal Costs Accountant in preparing a bill of costs, settling or attending adjudication/taxing same.

 

 

Billing in Litigation Matters

 

We shall bill you in the normal way and you will be responsible for payment of our bill. We will then seek to recover as much as possible of this bill from the Defendant. The money so recovered will be refunded to you less any costs incurred in their recovery.

 

 

Money Laundering Regulations 

 

We are required to maintain a copy of your photo identification and a bill in your name. If you have not already provided us with these, please send a copy of your identification and a bill in your name along with a signed copy of this letter.

 

 

Data Protection 

 

Under the General Data Protection Regulation, we are obliged to advise you how and why we will take and maintain your personal data.

 

We will need a number of personal data from you such as:

a) Your name

b) Date of Birth

c) Address

d) Telephone number

e) E-mail address

f) Occupation

 

We may also need to obtain your medical records and other personal data relevant to your case.

 

We will maintain your personal information both digitally and in hard copy form on your file. We will transmit same inter office and with counsels from time to time. It may also be necessary to share your personal information with experts in order to advance your case.

 

Your personal information will be set out in proceedings and in affidavits as required.

 

We must maintain records of your case for six years. After which, your file will be shredded.

 

We will use your personal information for two purposes, contacting you and for progressing your case.

 

By signing this letter, you are consenting to us taking and maintaining your personal data for the purposes noted above and furthermore consent to us raising fees and charging for outlay and outlined above.

 

 

If the above is in order I would be most obliged if you might sign below and return the signed copy of the Notice to us at your earliest convenience.

 

 

__________________

Please sign here

 

 

Please note that in accordance with Section 150 (4)(f), Section 150 (7) and Section 150 (8) we cannot provide you with any legal services for a period of 10 days unless you confirm to us that you want us to continue providing legal services in relation to this matter.

 

This will apply unless;

- In our opinion, not to provide legal services would be a contravention of statutory requirement or the rules of the Court or would prejudice your rights in a manner that could not later be remedied

 

- A court orders us to provide legal services or

 

- A Notice of Trial has been served in relation to the matter or a date has been fixed for hearing

 

 

Please sign below to confirm that you would like to waive the 10 day period and allow us to continue providing legal services.

 

__________________

Please sign here

 

If you have any queries regarding this letter please do not hesitate to contact us.

 

 

Yours sincerely,

 

_____________________

Solicitor’s Name

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