The Best No Win No Fee Solicitors Guide
Compensation claims can sometimes be less than straight forward. Deciding on whether your particular circumstances entitles you to compensation can be difficult, and the advices can vary from solicitor to solicitor.
Some solicitors will have a team of paralegals who will tell tell everyone they have a claim in an effort to take down your details, send you some paperwork, get you ‘signed up’, only for then a solicitor to review your matter and advise you you do not have a claim, leaving you disillusioned with the process and dismissive of obtaining a second opinion. Some solicitors will simply say you do not have a claim as they lack the knowledge and/or it is too difficult a claim for them to pursue.
At Aston Knight Solicitors, we ensure you talk to a solicitor specialising in the area of law relevant to your circumstances, whether that be an accident at work, road traffic accident or a medical negligence claim. We will provide a detailed review of your chances of success, highlighting the possible scenarios and the approach the third party are likely to take given our experiences. It is this approach, and many other reasons, which has led many injured people requesting us to transfer in their file of papers from another firm of solicitors to our firm.
A good no win no fee solicitor can help make the whole process extremely easy. Engaging a no win no fee solicitor takes away the process of dealing with the laws and regulations of opening a compensation claim and leaves the legal jargon and paperwork to the solicitor. It is important, however, to understand what ‘no win, no fee’ truly means and whether your claim fits within this arrangement.
What does ‘no win no fee’ mean?
A ‘no win no fee’ agreement with a solicitor is a conditional fee agreement, whereby the solicitor is engaged by you, the injured party, to pursue compensation without paying legal fees upfront. The arrangement ensures that should you not win your claim, there is no fee required to pay to the solicitor.
Additionally, there are never any hidden charges with a no win no fee solicitor. Furthermore, with risk removed due to no upfront payment being needed, there is usually an understanding between client and solicitor that should a claim fall below a certain percentage chance of winning, the solicitor will remove their risk and no longer represent the client in proceeding with the claim.
A good no win no fee solicitor, especially in the UK, will recommend alternative options to their client, should they wish to continue with the claim, if the solicitor feels the prospects of success are limited. In the case of personal injury compensation claims, it is frequent that a solicitor may recommend another legal firm for a second opinion or advise them of the costs to continue to pursue the claim if the solicitor cannot continue on a no win no fee agreement.
How much does a no win no fee solicitor earn from my claim?
Should you win your claim, the solicitor is entitled to up to 25% (inclusive of VAT) of the compensation amount recovered for the work provided in helping you resolve your claim.
To help ensure the claimant achieve the maximum compensation they can from their claim, the UK government has set up schemes which ensure costs to the claimant are kept relatively low.
How much can I claim for personal injuries using a no win no fee solicitor?
Personal injury claims are one of the largest sectors of no win no fee claims. In 2016/17 it was recorded that over 978,000 personal injury claims were made with £126m recovered in compensation for claimants.
|Injury type||Minor||Moderate||Moderately Severe||Severe|
|Neck injury||up to £6,920||up to £33,750||up to £114,810||up to £130,060|
|Back injury||up to £10,970||up to £34,000||up to £77,540||up to £141,150|
|Foot injury||up to £12,050||up to £21,910||up to £16,410||up to £96,150|
|Knee injury||up to £12,050||up to £22,960||up to £38,120||up to £84,360|
|Leg injury||up to £24,340||up to £34,370||up to £48,080||up to £119,210|
|Wrist injury||up to £4,160||up to £21,480||up to £34,340||up to £52,490|
|Asbestosis||up to £92,820||up to £92,820||up to £92,820||up to £92,820|
|Deafness / Tinnitus||up to £11,040||up to £39,940||up to £96,150||up to £123,310|
|Brain Damage||up to £37,760||up to £192,090||up to £247,280||up to £354,260|
|Paralysis (paraplegia)||up to £249,270||see left||see left||see left|
|Paralysis (Tetraplegia /Quadriplegia)||up to £354,260||see left||see left||see left|
Pros of no win no fee compensation claims
There are many benefits to engaging in a no win no fee compensation claims with a solicitor. First and foremost, the already identified lack of risk to the claimant due to no upfront payment is always seen as a positive reassurance for them; they are not risking further financial damages before the claim is won.
In most cases, the solicitor is able to understand early on if the claim is likely to win and can accurately assess if they are likely to win. This allows for honest and transparent communication with the claimant, and for them to decide whether to instruct the solicitor.
Secondly, the payment arrangement schemes set up by the UK government allows for the claimant to keep the majority of their compensation, without losing lots of money to heavy solicitor fees. Be aware of any solicitor charging more than 25%, or adding VAT or adding a very heavy insurance premium which could be thousands of pounds. At Aston Knight Solicitors we regularly receive instructions from clients who have experienced such cases of hidden, illegal and unreasonable charges from their solicitors.
Thirdly, it is usually understood that the financial incentive to win the claim from the solicitor’s point of view ensures maximum effort. In the solicitor’s eyes, the more the client wins, the higher the fee paid to the solicitor, based on the no win no fee financial arrangement set-up prior to the compensation claim.
It follows that in the event a solicitor does not charge upto 25%, and in some instances state they make no deductions at all; given the nominal costs that are awarded it is less than viable to pursue such claims and there is no incentive for the solicitor to continue to negotiate hard on your behalf.
What makes for the best no win no fee solicitors?
In matters of no win no fee compensation claims, the best solicitors for the job are simply the ones which provide honest initial advice and are transparent about their deductions and fees. A solicitor who can ask the right questions from their initial consultation with the client are the ones who can gather quality information that they need to ensure that they can assess and analyse the situation. In doing so, they can determine whether the claim is worthwhile to both the claimant and the solicitor representing them.
Communication is key to clients and therefore, the no win no fee solicitors who take the time to explain the communication process often build the strongest rapport and instill confidence in their clients.
Ayoub grew up in Bury before graduating from the University of Lancaster. After then completing his Post Graduate Diploma in Law at the College of Law, Chester, he joined a prestigious London magic-circle firm where he worked on a multi-million pound product liability claim, being the highest value claim of its type in the world. He then returned to the North West where he joined a leading practice before leaving to start his own specialist practice. To contact Ayoub, visit the contact page.