Started in 2000 by the government in order to take the pressure off legal aid, ‘no win, no fee’ has created thousands of opportunities for people who would previously have been unable to take their claim to court.
The phrase ‘no win no fee’ originates in the legal term Conditional Fee Agreement, which means that payment to your solicitor is conditional and usually based on the condition that you win your case.
Although the term ‘no win, no fee’ has become commonplace, very few people fully understand the process, which is often misunderstood as either free legal aid or wrought with hidden costs.
A Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) is a signed agreement between two parties: a solicitor and the person making the claim. This agreement should explain that the fee is based on the condition that you win your case – but that court expenses are not, however, included.
Court expenses can include anything from research into your medical history to producing documents for court and are expected to be paid by you regardless of the outcome of your claim.
By taking out an ‘After the Event’ policy, a fixed premium that covers disbursements and court expenses, you can rest assured that you will not end up losing out. Be sure to check the small print, and as long as you do your own research, there is no need to be afraid of hidden costs.
When initially contacting a ‘no win, no fee’ solicitor, make sure to give as much information as possible. Be honest, because any exaggerations or white lies that are proved false in court will affect the viability of your claim and may impact on your Conditional Fee Agreement. This means you could end up with no money, even if you win. Always be honest with your solicitor, and they will do the best to help you regardless.
Choosing a Solicitor
With hundreds of solicitors to choose from, how do you go about choosing the right solicitor for your case? The internet is full of information on different solicitor firms and companies, meaning that you can research extensively before settling on one solicitor.
Check testimonials both on and off the company’s site to get an idea of who you are going to be dealing with. Make sure you’re getting the best possible help.
Don’t suffer in silence: if you believe your claim is viable, call up a ‘no win, no fee’ company immediately. Don’t let the cost of court stop you from getting what you’re entitled to.