Is your firm trying to reduce the risk of an adverse Costs Assessment?
Adverse cost assessments are frustrating, distracting and expensive. In our recent article we saw an expensive cost dispute rising 10 years later. Unfortunately, even the most frivolous of claims can incur a large administrative and financial burden. We’ve collated some useful resources to assist you in reducing the risk of an adverse cost assessment. The resources explain costs, billing and disputes in NSW and Victoria.
If you are in NSW, check out these links from The Law Society of NSW:
Costs page; There is a wealth of useful explanations, links
and fact sheets available here regarding the assessment of uniform law costs by law practice.
Costs precedents; You can access letters,
precedents and forms regarding cost precedents. The information also covers commercial and government clients.
Client Costs Settlement Deed; The Deed of Compromise is intended to operate as an accord and satisfaction when settling a solicitor/client or uniform law costs dispute. It is intended to be used in those cases where there is a genuine compromise of the costs in dispute such that the practitioner is able to evidence a significant concession as the consideration for bringing the costs dispute to a complete end. If you are a member you will be able to download the Client Costs Settlement Deed in PDF or Word doc.
Costs Guidebook The Costs Guidebook is
a practical introduction to costs, featuring a suite of customisable precedents for compulsory costs disclosure and fee agreements. First published
in 1994, this popular publication is produced by the Law Society’s Costs Committee and has been regularly revised ever since. It will shortly be updated
to a 7th edition which refers to the new uniform law.
Billing factsheet. This two-page fact sheet is simple
and easy to digest. It has information on Type of Bill, Service of Bill, Itemised Bills, Itemised Bill higher than Lump Sum Bill, Responsible Principal
for a Bill, Charging for Bills & Written Reports as to Costs, Notification of Client’s Rights and Interest on Unpaid Legal Costs.
Other factsheets are available here if you
would like more resources about how the legal profession is regulated in New South Wales.
If you are in Victoria, check out these useful articles:
Billing provisions; The Uniform Law and Uniform
Rules commenced on 1 July 2015 in Victoria and NSW, introducing new obligations in relation to billing. This information sheet summarises the relevant
Cost agreements information sheet ; This information
sheet summarises the costs agreement provisions as part of the Uniform Law ruling which commenced on 1 July 2015 in Victoria and NSW.
Legal costs and cost disclosure obligations;
This information sheet summarises the legal costs and costs disclosure obligations of the Uniform Law.
Costs Estimates Guidelines and worked examples;
These examples were developed to demonstrate how the cost disclosure obligations operate in practices. The useful examples are offered as illustrations
for assistance only.
FAQs – Costs disclosure; The Board and Commissioner have produced a fact sheet covering commonly asked questions regarding costs disclosure.
Costs disclosure information; This webpage explains cost disclosure in terms of client’s consent, exceptions
to cost disclosure, short form cost disclosure and cost estimates and the effect of the failure to disclosure.
FAQs – Costs disclosure; The Board and Commissioner of the
Victorian Legal Services have produced a fact sheet covering commonly questions asked about costs disclosure.
Cost agreements factsheet; This webpage explains the strict requirements relating to legal costs agreements.
Billing explained; The Victorian Legal Services explain the various forms of a bill.
Looking for cover?
To avoid the burdens and financial pain, you can simply purchase cover online. Costs Cover is the only place to protect this risk to your business so you are in the right place.
You can view FAQ here or speak to Charles Galayini