SUPREME COURT COSTS OFFICE
London, EC4A 1DQ
B e f o r e :
| BRIAN FOORD
|- and -
|AMERICAN AIRLINES INC
Mr Raj Patel, Solicitor (of QM Solicitors) for the Defendant
Hearing dates: 14 June 2007
Crown Copyright ©
"Conditional Fee Agreements Regulations 2000 ("the regulations")
4. Information to be given before Conditional Fee Agreements made
(1) Before a conditional fee agreement is made the legal representative must
(a) inform the client about the following matters, and
(b) if the client requires any further explanation, advice or other information about any of those matters, provide such further explanation, advice or other information about them as the client may reasonably require.
(2) Those matters are
(e) whether the legal representative considers that any particular method or methods of financing any or all of those costs is appropriate and, if he considers that a contract of insurance is appropriate or recommends a particular such contract
(i) his reasons for doing so, and
(ii) whether he has an interest in doing so."
3A (1) This regulation applies to a conditional fee agreement under which .the client is liable to pay his legal representative's fees and expenses only to the extent that sums are recovered in respect of the relevant proceedings, whether by way of costs or otherwise.
(3) Regulations 2, 3 and 4 do not apply to a conditional fee agreement to which this regulation applies.
"If you lose, you pay your opponent's charges and disbursements. You may have taken out an insurance policy against this risk. Please also see conditions 3(j) and 5. If you lose, you do not pay our basic charges but we may require you to pay our disbursements. You may have also taken out an insurance policy against this risk."
"Immediately before you signed this agreement, we verbally explain to you the effect of this Agreement and in particular the following:
(e) (iii) We confirm that we do not have any financial interest in recommending this particular insurance agreement, save that we are an approved member of the Lawcall Direct Ltd's Solicitors Panel."
"What happens if you win?:
If you win:
You are then liable to pay all our basic charges, our disbursements and success fees please see condition 3(n).
Normally you will be entitled to recover part or all of our basic charges, our disbursements and success fee from your opponent.
If you and your opponent cannot agree the amount, the Court will decide how much you can recover. If the amount agreed or allowed by the Court does not cover all our basic charges and our disbursements, then you are not required to pay the difference."
"By the Solicitors Introduction and Referral Code, a full copy of which can be provided on written request, we are obliged to make disclosure of our referral arrangements. This is a regulation which we are happy to embrace. As you are aware, your case has been referred to us by Lawcall Direct Ltd. We have a commercial arrangement with Lawcall, where in return for a payment up to a maximum of £300, they refer a case to us. This fee relates to marketing and valuable vetting services provided by Lawcall. We are satisfied that our arrangements with Lawcall do not impact on our duties to you. Please rest assured that you will not be required to pay anything towards this fee."
"29. Lawcall usually operates on a fairly typical claims management business model, providing funding through a loan and marketing its own branded policy of ATE insurance. However, when we were asked to join the panel, we advised Lawcall we were unable to conduct work on this basis. In particular, we were not and are not prepared to sign our clients up to loans. We do not recommend insurance in every case. The view we take as a practice is that clients with relatively strong cases, where admission of liability is likely, do not need to take out ATE insurance as a matter of course. In such cases we often advise clients to wait to see whether ATE insurance is necessary (for example, on the subsequent issuing of proceedings)."
THE DEFENDANT'S SUBMISSIONS
THE CLAIMANT'S SUBMISSIONS