Briefcase Law Ltd’s Terms and Conditions of Business are contained on this page. Should there be any discrepancy between the Client User Agreement and these Terms and Conditions, the Client User Agreement will take precedence. Please read this document carefully and keep a copy for future reference.
Should you have any cause to complain about the services that Briefcase Law has provided, these Terms and Conditions set out below the steps you should take.
The use of the singular in these Terms and Conditions may include the plural and vice versa. In this document, the use of ‘Terms’, ‘Terms and Conditions of Business’ refer to these Terms and Conditions and the terms ‘we’ or ‘us’ or ‘our’ or ‘the/this Company’ refer to Briefcase Law Ltd.
We reserve the right to make amendments to these Terms and Conditions. Any changes, should they affect our current work for you, will be made known to you. Copies of the Company’s amended Terms and Conditions will be available upon request but we refer you in the first instance to the copy available on our website at www.briefcaselaw.co.uk/termsandconditions.
- Service Standards
The Company will keep you updated on any work undertaken for you within the packages that we provide. We will provide to you in writing feedback on your claim or defence along with advice for the continuation of your claim or defence and on-going advice, assistance and representation according to our agreement.
We will communicate with you in plain language.
We require you to provide all documentation that is in your control and is necessary for the drafting of your documents and preparation for any court attendance in a timely manner.
- Acceptance of Terms and Conditions of Business
We are unable to communicate with others on your behalf until a letter of authority signed by you is in our possession. By signing our Client User Agreement you are deemed to have read, understood and accepted the terms of both these Terms and Conditions of Business and the Client User Agreement in their entirety.
If you have any queries or questions relating to these Terms and Conditions or the Client User Agreement then please raise them immediately before signing the Client User Agreement.
- Who can provide us with instructions?
We can only accept instructions from you as our client, or a person authorised to act on your behalf. If we are instructed by more than one person or legal entity or any other company or partnership, we may accept instructions from any party who has signed the Client User Agreement, without consultation and/or approval from the other(s).
If the Client User Agreement is signed by only one party, we shall not be able to accept instructions from any other party, and shall require authorisation from the signatory to act upon such instructions. In order for the Company to accept instructions on your matter from a third party, we shall require written authority from our client(s) confirming the same.
- Data Protection Act 1998 and Confidentiality
We will only store personal information about you in accordance with the requirements of the Data Protection Act 1998. We are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office on the Data Protection Register under Registration Number ZA024982 or such Registration Number as may in the future apply. Our data controller for these purposes is Rupert Lipton.
We shall treat all information that you supply to us as confidential at all times, unless we have your express or implied permission to disclose that information to other parties, or, we are required to disclose it by court order or for any legislative or regulatory reason.
The information that you do provide us will be used primarily for the purposes of providing you with legal services and related reasons. Subject to your express instructions to the contrary, we may also use your information for the purpose of the management of our business and for the maintenance of our client database. You have a statutory right of access to information that we hold about you.
It may be necessary in the course of our work for you, that we disclose your personal information to third parties; e.g. expert witnesses; information technology suppliers; or other organisations which hold your personal data. Similarly, we may be required to pass your personal information to outside auditors. Your consent to our so doing will be inferred from your acceptance of these Terms and Conditions. Any such organisations to which we do pass your personal data are required to maintain our obligation of confidentiality to you.
In the case that we hold any sensitive personal data about you (as defined in the Data Protection Act 1998), we will not disclose it to any third parties without your express permission to do so.
By acceptance of these Terms and Conditions, you are deemed to accept the risks associated with modern communication technologies such as email, SMS and other network based communications. The Company will take all reasonable steps to minimize and reduce such risks, and uses anti-virus and firewall technology, but cannot be held liable to you for any loss or risks that arise out of such communications use, including, but not restricted to: transmission of computer virus code, loss or corruption of data, breaches in confidentiality, misdirection of or failure to receive communications.
- Fees, Costs, and Expenses
We define ‘Fees’ as ‘the contractually agreed charge or charges that we and you agree between us will apply for the provision of any services that the Company provides you with’. We reserve the right to adjust our prices as displayed on our website at any time. However where a client has entered into a contractual relationship with us we will honour the prices displayed on our website at the time of that original purchase for the purposes of any further stages of work engaged with regard to the same matter.
We shall not undertake fixed price service packages for you before we are in receipt of cleared funds by way of payment of the fees agreed for each individual package of work.
We define ‘Costs’ as ‘payments made to parties other than the Company in the pursuance of the service that we are contracted to provide to you’.
In general, all such costs will be paid by you directly to the third party. This includes any court fees or proceedings issue fees. The Company accepts the responsibility to advise and alert you to the requirement to pay any such costs and charges and to the necessary timescale for payment. However, you acknowledge and accept that the Company cannot be held responsible or liable for any delay or failure of your legal action in the circumstances that these fees are under-paid, delayed or un-paid.
We define ‘Expenses’ to be ‘the reasonable out of pocket monies that we are obliged to pay to third parties, expressly and specifically in order to undertake our work for you’.
These expenses will typically be costs for travel and subsistence incurred where representing you in court hearings or other physical meetings requiring our presence.
- Incoming Third Party Payments
The Company does not hold monies on account for customers and will not accept any such incoming payments. Any such payments must be made directly to you.
- Financial Information
We accept the following methods of payment. For ease of reference the usual clearance time of each payment method is indicated in brackets:-
- Credit Transfer using the UK ‘Faster Payments’ system (2 hours)
- Cheque (6 working days)
The necessary details for payment will be provide to you in our Client User Agreement or directly by post, email or otherwise.
We reserve the right to require cleared funds on account in the Company’s possession before we begin work on your matter or commence further instructed work.
Any monies that we become liable to pay to you, will only be paid directly to you by cheque or credit transfer.
- Payment Terms, Interest, and Debt Recovery
Any invoices we submit are due for payment 7 days from the date of delivery. Email delivery will be assumed to immediate. Postal delivery will be assumed to be affected 2 business days after posting by first class or equivalent next day service, or on proven receipt, whichever is sooner.
If it appears that you have failed to comply with the above timescale, the Company may cease to perform any outstanding services, without further notice. After 30 days from the date of delivery, where request for payment remains outstanding, the Company reserves the right to accrue daily interest charges on any sums outstanding at a rate of 8% per annum and to issue formal legal proceedings to recover the debt.
- Retention and Retrieval of files
Our general policy is to store files of papers and documents relating to your matter for 6 years after completion of work for you, subject to your request for the return of physical papers and files. Once the 6 year period has expired we reserve the right to destroy all papers, documents and files. Your acceptance of these Terms and Conditions shall be taken as agreement to this retention and destruction policy.
Where any payment amounts for any agreed services provided to you are outstanding, we will be entitled to retain all papers and files pending payment.
We reserve the right to retain our files of your documents and papers in digital form only, such files backed up in at least one back up location. In this case, we will destroy any physical papers and documents after the expiry of any appeal period in your case, having first offered, or made reasonable attempts to offer to return the papers to you.
If, after the conclusion of our work for you, you require us to retrieve from storage any file, papers or documents, or to peruse or correspond with anyone with regard to those files, papers or documents, we reserve the right to make a reasonable charge for this work based on the amount of our resources required and to cover any postage, printing or photocopying charges.
- Termination of Contract
You are entitled to terminate your agreement with us at any time. If you do so, we will immediately cease work on your matter, subject to any obligations to third parties such as witnesses, experts, courts etc. However, you will NOT be entitled to a refund of any payments already made with regard to any work that we have already undertaken.
Under the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Payments) Regulations 2013, you are entitled to a fourteen day ‘cooling off’ period from date of agreement to purchase. However, where you have agreed for contractual services to commence within fourteen days of the commencement of the contract, whether by initial meeting, or by our consideration of materials related to your case, the right to a full refund may be lost. We will however, return any monies paid if a minimum of 48 hours’ notice is given before a scheduled meeting, less any transactional costs that we have incurred.
We reserve the right to terminate our agreement with you, in writing, giving reasonable notice and reasons, at any time. We will only do this where we have a good reason to do so and where it would be unreasonable for us to continue. In such circumstances, we will return to you any fees paid for work which we have not yet commenced or undertaken.
Where either party suspends or terminates our agreement or work on your matter, we reserve the right to retain your files, papers and documents, together with any other documents or materials that we may be holding on your behalf, as a lien pending settlement of any outstanding fees.
- Limitation of Liability
Liability of the Company to you for a breach of your instructions will be limited to £50,000.00 (fifty thousand pounds sterling), or such figure as we subsequently notify you of. We will not be liable for any consequential, special, indirect or exemplary damages, costs or losses, or any damages, costs or losses attributable to any lost profits or opportunities. Our liability is only limited to the extent that the law allows. In particular, we cannot limit our liability for death or personal injury caused by our negligence. If you have any questions in this regard, please contact the Company.
- Complaints and Disputes Procedure
The Company tries hard to ensure that you are at least satisfied with the services that we provide to you. If, however, you feel that you have cause for complaint or dispute as to the services provided or the fees charged, you are encouraged to raise the matter with the Director of the Company responsible for your matter at the earliest possible time and within 3 months of the completion of the services in question.
Any omission by the Company at any time to exercise the rights created by one or more of these Terms and Conditions will not constitute a waiver of them, or of the right at any time subsequently of the Company to enforce any applicable Terms of Business, unless such a right has been formally waived in writing by a Director of the Company.
- Disclosure of Status
We are regulated as non-practising/unregistered barristers by the Bar Standards Board. This means that whilst we are not obliged to follow all the rules that practising/registered barristers have to obey, the core duties of the BSB Code of Conduct and certain other rules do apply and the Board can consider any complaints made against us as individuals. In our work for Briefcase Law, we are not acting as barristers.
More information can be found on the Regulation page of our Company website at www.briefcaselaw.co.uk/regulation.
We are not regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).
We are not authorised by the Claims Management Regulator (CMR).
We do not come under the remit of the Legal Ombudsman.
- Explanation of Terms
If you are unclear as to the nature and/or the extent of either our or your obligations under these Terms and Conditions, or you require further information, please raise any queries with the Director responsible for your matter before signing the Client User Agreement.
By your acceptance of these Terms and Conditions, you agree that you understand and accept that there is a risk associated with any legal action, that for reasons outside of our control, you may not ultimately achieve the outcome that you seek. In these circumstances, the Company cannot be held responsible for any loss or losses that you may incur as a result.
- Jurisdiction and Law
These Terms and Conditions, and any agreement that we come to with you, and any dispute that may arise in respect of such agreement, will come under the exclusive jurisdiction of the English and Welsh Courts and the applicable law will be the Law of England and Wales.
- Conflicts of Interest
We will always endeavour to avoid any situation where a conflict of interest may arise and ensure that your interests are not in any way compromised. If such a conflict of interest does arise we will consult with you about it promptly, agreeing if appropriate to place your matter in the hands of an alternative advocate within the Company or ceasing to act for you entirely.
If you become aware that a conflict of interest may have arisen, you are encouraged to alert us to your concerns at the earliest possible opportunity.
The Company will always endeavour to act with impartiality and independence and in your best interests.
- Equality and Diversity
The Company is committed to promoting equality and diversity in all of its dealings with clients and third parties and to treat all people with fairness, dignity and respect.
We will at all times endeavour to make such reasonable adjustments to the services that we offer and the way that we offer them so as to remove obstacles to access for people with disabilities.