Costs Draftsman Fees: How Much Do We Charge?
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What is a Costs Draftsman/Costs Lawyer?
Law Costs Draftsmen and Costs Lawyers work within the legal profession and specialise in the law relating to legal costs. They engage in the full litigation process, undertaking matters such as advising on retainers, drafting Bills of Costs or Costs Budgets, or providing representation at detailed assessment hearings.
Legally qualified Law Costs Draftsman are referred to as Costs Lawyers. These are legal professionals who are governed by the Costs Lawyers Standards Board, and can represent you as your advocate at costs related hearings as well as having the right to conduct costs litigation on your behalf (a Costs Lawyer for instance, can go on Court record in relation to costs litigation, much like a Solicitor can).
What Are Costs Draftsman Fees?
The fees charged by a Costs Draftsman/Costs Lawyer will vary based on a number of factors. Matters may be funded by way of legal aid, privately or on a CFA basis. The costs payable to your Costs Draftsman/Lawyer will ultimately depend on the work required and the type of case. In many cases, fees can be capped in line with what is recoverable.
Some Costs Draftsman fees will be fixed fee per piece of work undertaken (for instance for advice), or they may be charged as an hourly rate, either in line with a Solicitor’s retainer already in place, or if acting for a Litigant in Person, in line with any charging rate agreed with the client. The hourly rates charged can vary based on location, and the Costs Draftsman’s qualifications and years of experience. If for instance, you have instructed a qualified Costs Lawyer and based in a city centre (such as Manchester City Centre), a National 1 Grade C rate of up to £178 per hour may be recoverable from an opponent in an inter-partes matter (Costs Lawyers can also claim up to Grade B rates if suitably experienced). However, it should be noted that this is a guideline only and fees will vary from firm to firm. Private agreements can also be entered on a discount basis to the guideline rates.
Some Costs Draftsmen may also agree to work on a Conditional Fee Agreement, meaning they will only get paid if the matter is successful, or dependant upon the extent of success achieved (for instance the amount of profit costs recovered). Others may agree to work on a monthly retainer basis.
In the majority of inter-partes cases, Costs Draftsman fees can be recovered from the paying party as shown in the case of Crane v Canons Leisure  EWCA Civ 1352. This reflects legal costs work actually being the responsibility of a Solicitor, and such work therefore being recoverable under a Solicitor’s retainer. It is therefore important to note that whilst a Costs Draftsman/Lawyer may result in a fee being paid, their charges can ultimately be recoverable from an opponent or the Legal Aid Agency, and they provide a costs neutral service whilst also ensuring the best possible costs representation is provided.
In any costs dispute/query, we always recommend the use of Costs Draftsman/Lawyer services as legal costs are there own complicated area of law, particularly in relation to the intricacies of costs drafting, for which there can be significant costs consequences for any lack of compliance. You will benefit from instructing a specialist in costs who can ensure maximum recovery of your costs (or if representing a paying party, maximising reductions applied to a Bill), and that can assist you in negotiating the best possible outcome.
How Can ARC Costs Assist?
ARC Costs are a team of specialist Costs Draftsmen and Costs Lawyers dealing with claims for costs in all areas of law and type of legal matter. Common areas we work in include: personal injury, housing disrepair, tribunals, immigration and Judicial Reviews. We can also assist in recouping your legal aid costs in publicly funded cases.
We regularly assist our clients in the recovery of their costs during the course of the main action and also at conclusion of the case. We can provide advice on the scope of your funding agreement which is made between Solicitor and Client, ensuring both compliance and to maximise your costs on conclusion. We can also assist with the preparing of Costs Budgets (Precedent H) and Statement of Costs in compliance with Court deadlines, and to facilitate an accurate future estimation of your costs to secure reasonable interim payments on account at Trial.
Once damages have been agreed and an order as to costs has been obtained, whether at Court or within the settlement terms, we will also assist in the preparation of your Bill of Costs. We ensure all our Bills are detailed and accurate and reflect the maximum reasonable recoverability of your costs. We also negotiate with the opposing party on your behalf and, dependant upon whether we are acting for the Paying Party or the Receiving Party, we can prepare Points of Dispute or Points of Reply.
As regulated Costs Lawyers, we can also represent you at any Costs & Case Management Conferences (CCMC) which may be listed by the Court and at any Detailed Assessment hearing should costs not be agreeable outside of the Court.
As independent costs experts, we hold experience in acting for both Paying and Receiving parties, and we are registered to practice throughout England and Wales.
Should you wish to discuss your costs query with us, you may contact us on 01204 397302 or email one of the team at firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, you may complete our online enquiry form and we will contact you.
We are always happy to be flexible in respect of our charging structure, and whether you have a single query or volume instructions, we will be able to put together the right pricing structure to benefit you.
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