A ‘No Win, No Fee’ agreement between you and your solicitor is legally referred to as a ‘Conditional Fee Agreement’ or CFA. A CFA is an agreement in which you solicitor agrees to only be paid their fee is your claim is successful. If you lose your claim, then you will not have to pay them, as they are not entitled to any fees unless they win your claim.
Despite this, they are able to recover their expenses in the event of your case being lost, however this is usually covered by your legal expenses insurers for a fixed premium and known as an ‘After the Event’ policy. This can protect you from having to pay disbursements such as the cost of medical or expert witness reports. Likewise, insurance protects you from paying court costs.
The ‘no win, no fee’ system was developed in 2000 by the government, and has took the place of legal aid in accident and injury claims. Claims regarding clinical negligence, abuse or police abuse would still be dealt with by legal aid; however, the introduction of ‘no win, no fee’ has opened up the opportunity for thousands of victims of personal injury, from brain injury to broken bones, to gain access to the courts and receive compensation for the other people’s negligence.
When making your initial claim, the personal injury solicitors will assess the viability of your case, so make to include all details of the injury and the event, as if they think you have a valid claim and a good chance of winning compensation; they will take on your case.
This prevents lengthy court cases in situations where the claim was unlikely to be won in the first place. After your initial claim is processed, you will sign a written contractual conditional fee agreement with your solicitors. Be sure to read this carefully as it will cover all the details of what you pay and when you pay.
There are many types of ‘no win, no fee’ solicitors, many who work in specific categories such as road traffic solicitors, while others work with a broader range of clients. Despite this, not all solicitors are the same. It’s always best to look around online and read reviews before committing yourself to one ‘no win, no fee’ solicitor company.
This will ensure that you get the best possible legal aid for your case and also prevent you from being ripped off. Always be sure you have read through contracts thoroughly and never be pressured into signing anything in a rush. Read the small print.