Legal question - can solicitors charge for invoicing you? Legal question - can solicitors charge for invoicing you?
Posts 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1



    Default Legal question - can solicitors charge for invoicing you?

    As some of you know I was involved in court case which I won - I was stupid to get laywers involved so it cost me more than I won. Now I got final bill and it appears that they charged me for stuff like giving me breakdown of their fees - a few months ago they send me bill with extremely generic invoice that did not contain time they spent on it - they bill me by time so they must have had it unless they were making it up. I requested detailed breakdown and now they send me final bill which charged me £150 for a few phone calls + preparing that breakdown - ie invoice.

    This sounds WAY TOO unreasonable. So question is - can they charge for preparing invoice for you?

    Specifically they charged £150 for the following:

    2 short (5 mins or so) phone calls from me
    writing ME about me not using their services!
    preparing detailed breakdown of charges
    receiving MY letter to pay me back final invoice!
    phone call from myself reminding about cheque to be send me!

    The person who dealt with that charges £66 per hour, so it must be well over 2 hours of work.

    On the invoice before that with details of all charges they stated the amount that was due for refund - they did not mention cost of that detailed invoice in the invoice itself.

  2. #2



    Default Yes

    The simple answer to your question is yes. They can charge you for all time spent.

    If you are unhappy there are ways of resolving it. The law society has a number of procedures that can be invoked.

  3. #3



    Default cheers

    Thanks ASB - you are correct they can invoice for all work, they did not make it clear they will charge me for invoice, which appears unreasonable as they claim to have spent around 1.5 hours on 2 pages on invoice that they must have had to calculate total figure they given me for free, they spend 1.5 hours on defence and counterclaim, its strange it should taken them as much time on bloody invoice. I had a chat with them and they will get back to me with "partners" answer. Personally I think its lost case - I will certainly not use them every again (they will lose more than £150 ripped off on invoice) and certainly get much smarter next time I deal with solicitors.

    To me it is "the Firm" style rip-off with only difference that I have zero firepower to respond back - for now.

  4. #4



    Default Well.

    You can always apply to the law society to get the bill "taxed". This is binding on both sides, although the principles may have changed in the last 20 odd years.

    You actually have a number of complaints.

    - Is it reasonable that you are charged for the time producing the breakdown. I think the answer to that is probably yes - they are doing work on your behalf even if it is only to justify themseleves.

    - Is it reasonable that they spent 1.5 hours doing this. The answer to that is probably also yes. You list 6 different activities they did, one of which was letter writing, 2 of which were phone calls. All these have to be recorded and filed.

    When I produced parts of a time recording system - about 20 years ago - it was fairly standard for solicitors (and accountants) to have charging units of 15 minutes. If that was the case with these solicitors then there is your hour and a half.

  5. #5



    Default Re: Well.

    AFAIK "taxation" has to be done through courts - Law Society does what they call "renumaration certificate".

    1.5 hours for 2 page breakdown of activities that they must have had to calculate total? Bear in mind they given me total for free - they must have had this breakdown - but when I asked for actual breakdown they charged 1.5 hours. Did not tell me they will charge for it etc - wholy unreasonable but it appears that the best thing I can do it never come back to them.

  6. #6



    Default Re: Well.

    They sent me cheque for £110

    nice price for 2 page breakdown of what they actually charged me before, eh?

  7. #7

    Nervous Newbie

    Join Date
    Jan 2008


    I was interested to see your question because now I know I’m not the only one. I was recently at the end of a very simple redundancy process and was about to get 2 years statutory redundancy.
    I booked an appointment with a solicitor, I requested a consultation which or course I fully expected to pay for. I said I do not want much of your time, I would just like you to look at the information from my employer to reassure me there are no errors or pit falls I should be aware of. We met and she looked at the limited documentation I had and discussed the process for about 50 minuets. During the meeting I was informed her fees were £130 per hour as she was a junior, fine I thought. She reassured me everything was in order so as far as I was concerned that was it. I had a further call 2 weeks later asking if the matter was resolved, I informed her it was.
    I then received a bill for £550 + vat. Including such items as £104 preparation for the meeting. (She arrived with a blank pad and pen). The above mentioned call cost me £52 +vat. When I have questioned why I was not told of the likely cost their reply was, ‘we are only obliged inform you of the hourly rate’ which she did.
    I have used solicitors many times in the past and although they can be expensive I have always felt they deserved the money charged for the quantity and quality of the work done. However I have now learnt that you need to be very carful. The individual I went to was newly qualified and inexperience for example I was not asked for any identification something all other solicitors have asked for at the outset in the past.
    Next time if there is one I will be asking all the right questions at the start. I will be going to a solicitor o recommendation and a senior one at that, what a false economy this was...You live and learn

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