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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 11559
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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Should a solicitors bill of costs show clearly the work done

Resolved Question:

Should a solicitors bill of costs show clearly the work done and the cost for same. Are there guidelines for solicitors billing as there used to be by the Law Society?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  JGM replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question.
A solicitor has to provide a breakdown of costs when requested to do so by the client. There is no scale fee or other guidance nowadays but a solicitor has to issue a terms of business letter at the start of the work detailing what the charges will be.
Happy to discuss further.
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I have received a bill with just 'Our Fee' and the amount, no explanation as to what work has been done for that fee. I am told that a solicitor does not now have to give full particulars - can this be right?

Expert:  JGM replied 2 years ago.
If the fee quoted at the outset was a fixed fee, then no breakdown is needed, however if the fee is charged for the amount of work expended throughout the course of the transaction a breakdown has to be given if requested.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I'm sorry to appear pedantic but I need to know, when you say 'breakdown of fees ' does that mean details of work done or just the number of letters, phone calls etc. without saying what the letters and phone calls were about?

Expert:  JGM replied 2 years ago.
A breakdown is generally a list of the work done with a brief description of each item, for example, "telephoning you to discuss the latest letter received" or "meeting you at court and arguing motion". A time would be ascribed to each entry along with a charge for each entry.
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