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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10915
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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After being acquitted , the judge said I would be reimbersed

Resolved Question:

After being acquitted , the judge said I would be reimbersed the solicitor / barrister fees I had to pay in advance. Now alegdely the court have no recollection of this, how can this be possible and which route would I have to take to have my £10,000 returned
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.

Alex Watts :

Hello my name is XXXXX XXXXX I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return. There is no need to wait here, you will get an email when I reply.

Alex Watts :

Is this civil or criminal please? I assume criminal? Did you have a Solicitor represent you as well please?

Customer: Yes criminal, crown court appearance, with solicitor and barrister present
Alex Watts :

Ok - your Solicitor would normally apply for costs from central funds subject to taxation.

Alex Watts :

Therefore your Solicitor should be taking this up and indeed sending the bill of costs to the central office to be assessed.

Alex Watts :

You won't necessarily get all of it back - but the central office deals with costs.

Alex Watts :

If you read this note from the Law Society it states:

Alex Watts :

http://www.lawsociety.org.uk/advice/practice-notes/defence-costs-orders/

Alex Watts :

"Your clients appearing in the Crown court, in respect of proceedings commenced on or after the 1 October 2012 (except in an appeal against conviction or sentence from a magistrates court), will not be entitled to recover their legal costs expended in successfully defending those proceedings if they chose to be represented privately, rather than accepting a offer of legal aid, until 27 January 2014."

Alex Watts :

"It is very important to note that the exception, or special circumstance allowing a Defendant's Costs Order to include legal costs, in s16A(5A) requires that the Director of Legal Aid Casework has made a determination of financial ineligibility in relation to the accused and those proceedings."

Alex Watts :

"You must advise your clients of all the relevant funding options that are open to them and the advantages and disadvantages of each. You must also ensure that this advice is set out in any client care letter and, in particular, that the information includes reference to the effect of the provisions set out above. You must advise your client to apply for legal aid, even if likely to be ineligible, to preserve their right to recover some of their legal costs, in the event they are acquitted or otherwise successful."

Customer: The court case concluded in November 2013 and had to return to crown court for a restraining order to be heard. The judge residing at this hearing explained I would receive all my money back and this could be used to gain access rights to my child, how long will I be expecting to wait.
Alex Watts :

It can be some months probably up to 6-12 months.

Alex Watts :

I know Barristers who still have not been paid several years on.

Alex Watts :

But if your lawyer asked for a Defence Costs Order then it would be processed by the Taxation Office in the normal way.

Alex Watts :

But it is very slow indeed.

Alex Watts :

Have you not chased your Solicitor?

Customer: Yes but with not much response, how can this matter be resolved all I want is confirmation that the money will be reimbursed as £10,000 will help a lot in fees to gain access to my child, as you can imagine this money is not a small amount to have sitting doing nothing when I could be using it.
Alex Watts :

Yes of course. The legal system just takes a lot of time. I appreciate it is a lot of money but all I can usefully suggest is you keep onto your Solicitor.

Alex Watts :

If you are not getting much joy then ask for the details of the managing partner that deals with complaints.

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer: Will this info be fwd to my mail address so as to show my solicitor, it may give him a push in getting the information confirming reimbursement or if not at least a complaints procedure I can use.
Alex Watts :

Once you give a rating then the format changes. You can then print it off or come back to the question at any time.

Alex Watts :

I think the complaints procedure is probably the best action you can take.

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you?

Customer: Yes is there anyway it can be confirmed that the judge agreed that all costs would be reimbursed.
Alex Watts :

Yes because all proceedings are recorded.

Alex Watts :

If in doubt a transcript can be applied for.

Customer: Who has to apply for the transcript and how long would this take, I have not been able to see my son for nearly 1 year and would like to get this matter resolved sooner rather than later.
Alex Watts :

Your Solicitor would have to. That could take a month or two for it to get that if the hearing was some time ago.

Alex Watts :

Because once you have a tape it has to go to a transcribers

Customer: So basically I will have to rely on my solicitor to get the information required, is there no way that this could be speeded up.
Alex Watts :

Sadly not. Unless you call several times a week and bug the hell of them.

Customer: Thanks very much for the information, and I will obviously continue to (bug the hell out of them ) but is it possible to give me a guess on the time scale before I try an alternative route, or if there is an alternative route.
Alex Watts :

Yes I know the process is slow and frustrating.

Alex Watts :

If this answers your question could I invite you leave feedback on my service which I hope has been excellent today, if you need more information or help then please click reply.


Please remember that I am always happy to help if you have future questions, even if I am in Court I can normally respond within a few hours. For future information, please start them with ‘For Alex W’.


 


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Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10915
Experience: Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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