- Matrix Solicitors
These are the Terms and Conditions of Business of Matrix Solicitors, which is the trading name of Matrix Solicitors Limited, Company Registration Number: 7470837 Registered Office: Normanton Business Centre, 258 Normanton Road, Derby, DE23 6WD. A list of Directors is available for inspection at the Registered Office. Matrix Solicitors is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA NO: 544893).
Our usual office hours are 9.00 am until 5.00 p.m. each weekday and we would not be available for appointments without prior arrangement. However, appointments can be arranged outside normal office hours with prior arrangements but subject to a fee charged at enhanced hourly rate.
- These Terms and Conditions of Business and “You”
2.1 These are the Terms and Conditions of Business which will apply to the services which we provide to you as our client in relation to any matter on which you retain us, unless otherwise agreed.
2.2 When you instruct us to advise you on a new matter we shall normally send you a letter (a “Retainer Letter”) confirming your instructions, except where the instructions are repeat business. The terms of that letter (if any) and these Terms and Conditions of Business will be incorporated into the contract between us.
2.3 We shall normally indicate in the Retainer Letter, or separately in writing, the person or persons who are our clients for that matter.
- Our Services to You
3.1 Upon receipt of your initial instructions we will confirm in writing:-
3.1.1 Your instructions;
3.1.2 Scope of work;
3.1.3 Charges and expenses likely to be incurred;
3.1.4 The people responsible for your work, their status and hourly rates.
3.2 We aim to:-
3.2.1 Offer an efficient and effective service;
3.2.2 Conduct our services in a competent and professional manner;
3.2.3 Respond promptly and keep you well informed;
3.2.4 Keep a record of all action taken.
3.3 We will keep you updated by either telephone or in writing as to the progress on your matter as soon as practicable and at least every six weeks unless agreed to the contrary.
3.4 We will advise you of any changes that occur in the law and also of any circumstances and risks of which we become aware or consider to be reasonably foreseeable that could affect the outcome of your matter.
- Scope of our services to you
4.1 We are not authorised under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. In some circumstances, it may be necessary to refer you to an independent financial advisor/person authorised by the Financial Services Authority.
4.2 We are also not able to provide advice in respect of taxation matters unless otherwise agreed in the scope of work or on any point of foreign law.
- Your dealings with us
5.1 To assist us in providing our services in this way, you will appreciate the importance of providing us with information when we ask for it to enable us to act and continue to act efficiently in carrying out your instructions.
Such information may include:-
5.1.1 A change in details;
5.1.2 Any critical dates;
5.1.3 Giving us as much notice as possible of changes in time scales;
5.1.4 Information in respect of timescales and changes to them;
5.1.5 Any changes in instructions;
5.1.6 letting us know if you do not understand any aspect of the work;
5.1.7 Correct communication details.
5.1.8 You must provide all relevant information to enable us to comply with our statutory obligations including information required for the purposes of complying with the requirements of the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017. You must disclose to us if have you are in any way connected or related to a Politically Exposes person. A Politically Exposed is defined as an individual who is or has, at any time in the preceding year, been entrusted with a prominent public function by a State, Community Institution or an International Body
5.2 You must also provide us with clear, timely and accurate instructions when we request these to enable us to properly conduct your matter on your behalf.
5.3 You must also provide us with all necessary documentation relating to your matter to enable us to properly conduct it on your behalf and also to enable us to complete your transaction or matter in a timely manner.
5.4 If your matter involves a dispute before the courts, an arbitrator or a tribunal both domestic and international, you are under a duty to safeguard any documents you have in your possession or control in either electronic or paper format. If you fail to safeguard any documents that need to be provided to the court concerning your matter then this may lead to your case being prejudiced and also the possibility of sanctions being imposed against you by the courts.
- Communication with you
6.1 We may communicate with you by e-mail, post, fax and phone. Unless you tell us otherwise, we will assume that you are happy for us to communicate by e-mail or fax, even though we cannot guarantee security or confidentiality of any e-mail communication.
- People responsible for your work
7.1 We shall notify you at the outset of the matter (normally in the Retainer Letter) of the solicitor with conduct of your work. He or she may be assisted by others as the matter progresses. It may be necessary to involve other Consultants or qualified members of staff in particular aspects of the work and we shall normally notify you if anyone is likely to become involved on a continuing basis and provide you with details of his/ her hourly rates. Our team may include others such as trainee solicitors or paralegals.
7.2 We shall endeavour to avoid changing the person who is handling your matter but, if this cannot be avoided, we shall notify you promptly of the person or persons who will be handling your work.
- Charges and expenses
8.1 You are personally responsible for the payment of our fees. In circumstances were we have agreed to act for you on a conditional fee basis we will endeavour to recover our fees from the third party at the conclusion of the case.
8.2 Unless otherwise agreed, our fees will be calculated by reference to the time spent by the fee earner dealing with your matter. Time spent on your matter will include (but will not be limited to): meetings with you and others; any time spent travelling; considering preparing and working on papers; written and electronic correspondence; undertaking legal research; making and receiving phone calls; and secretarial support. We shall normally notify you at the outset of the matter (generally in the retainer letter) of the current relevant hourly rates for the person or persons involved in your matter.
8.3 Our hourly rates are reviewed from time to time (generally on 1st January in each year) and we shall notify you of any increased rates.
8.4 In the absence of agreement to the contrary your initial instructions to us will constitute your authority for us to incur all reasonable disbursements and expenses (such as search fees, stamp duty, Court fees, experts’ fees, barristers’ fees and courier fees) and you agree to reimburse us for them. If in our professional judgment we consider it necessary to do so we shall consult with you before incurring any such expenditure.
8.5 We are obliged to give information about our hourly charging rates. The hourly charging rate applicable depends on the grade of Fee Earner working on your case, plus V.A.T. thereon. We would ask you to note that our hourly charging rates are reviewed on 1st January of each year and may be increased. However we will write and advise you further in this respect should this occur. Our present hourly rates are as follows:-
Fee Earner Status
Grade A Sole Principal, Partners or Solicitors 8yrs qualified £201
Grade B Solicitors, Legal Executives 4-8 years qualified £177
Grade C Other Solicitors and fee earners of equivalent experience £146
Grade D Trainee Solicitors, Paralegals and fee earners of equivalent experience £111
Letters Written and telephone calls made or received are charged at 1/10 per hour of the applicable fee earners charging rate.
Disbursements As incurred
Photocopying per sheet £00.25p
Money Laundering Search £10.00 plus VAT
8.6 In circumstances were we have agreed to act for you on a Conditional Fee Agreement basis, we will attempt to recover all of our costs from the third party at the successful conclusion of the case. In the event that we are not able to recover all of our costs from the third party then we shall not seek to recover any shortfall from you.
However we will seek to recover any shortfall from you if you do not co-operate with us at all times or if you act unreasonably, so for example if we advised you to accept an offer of damages made by the third party and you reject the offer, despite our advice to the contrary, and at trial you are awarded less than the third party’s offer then you would be responsible for the payment of our costs from the latest date on which the third party’s offer could have been accepted. In those circumstances you would also be responsible for the payments to the third party’s costs from the latest date on which the offer could have been accepted. You would also be responsible for payments of our costs where for example you fail to provide us with instructions or you mislead us.
8.6.1 Road Traffic Accidents which settle without the need to issue court proceedings.
If you instruct us to recover damages for personal injuries and losses as a result of a Road Traffic Accident and your case settles without the need to issue court proceedings then under Court Rules we are entitled to claim a fixed amount in respect of our costs from the other side based on the amount we recover for you. We confirm that we will limit our charges to the amount payable under the court rules and will not seek to recover any shortfall from you.
8.6.2 Claims involving the MIB (The Motor Insurance Bureau).
In some circumstances the MIB may not pay the whole of your legal costs. In those circumstances we may enter into a Non Contentious Business Fee Agreement with you. This is an agreement whereby we will deduct a percentage of your damages to cover your legal costs. If you are not successful in your claim then you will not have any liability for costs to us.
8.6.3 Other Non Contentious Business Fee Agreements.
This is an agreement whereby we will deduct a percentage of any money (or other assets) recovered on your behalf to cover your legal costs. If we are not successful in recovery of any amounts on your behalf, then you will not have any liability for costs to us.
8.7. We will update you every six months and advise you of the costs which have been incurred on your matter.
- Payments on Account
9.1 In circumstances where we act for you on a private retainer basis (as appose to a conditional fee basis or on a non contentious business fee agreement) It is our general practice (as with most law firms) to ask clients to pay to us money on account for anticipated fees and expenses. We shall notify you separately of the amount of any advance that is required. From time to time we may require further advances to be placed with us. If there is any difficulty in paying the advance please let the solicitor in charge of your matter know as soon as possible and we will discuss it with you.
9.2. When we render invoices to you we will offset any advances that you have made against the invoice.
- Estimate of Costs
10.1 Where possible we shall provide you with an estimate of the likely overall costs in relation to any matter or if that is not possible then we will give you an estimate within a range. Unless otherwise agreed with us in writing, any estimate or quotation of costs does not amount to a promise or agreement that we shall perform our services within a fixed time or for a fixed fee.
10.2 We shall notify you if any estimate of time and/ or fees that we have given to you requires revision because unforeseen additional work becomes necessary or your requirements or other circumstances have changed or because of delays or unanticipated problems which are beyond our control.
10.3 If for any reason a matter does not proceed to completion we shall charge you for work done and expenses incurred unless otherwise agreed. Our charges will be calculated in accordance with our hourly charging rates as detailed in paragraph 8 above.
- Value Added Tax
11.1 Any estimates we provide are exclusive of VAT unless otherwise specified. VAT will be charged as applicable on our charges and on those expenses and disbursements that are liable for VAT. The VAT number for Matrix Solicitors is 814 037654.
- Your Money
12.1 Any of your money that we hold will be held in a separate client account. Where we hold money on your behalf we will account for interest in accordance with the Solicitors Accounts Rules 1998 unless otherwise agreed.
13 Payment of Interest
13.1 We do not carry out a banking or investment service, we only hold client monies for a specific purpose and generally only for a short period of time.
13.2 We do not pay interest on client deposits that are with us for less than 28 days.
13.3 We do not pay interest if the gross interest accrued is less than £50.00.
13.4 Subject to the above interest will be paid on client monies at a rate 0.25% below the deposit interest rate paid by Lloyds Bank for the time being on the Client Account.
13.5 Monies held longer term in a Designated Deposit Account will attract interest on a daily basis as paid by Lloyds Bank for the time being.
- 14. Billing Arrangements
14.1 We shall bill you monthly, unless otherwise agreed. Each bill will state the period which it covers and will be a final bill for that period. If we incur any significant disbursements we may send you a bill for the disbursements at any time. However we reserve the right to request payment on account of costs and disbursements (including in particular for payment of stamp duty), see clause 8.
14.2 Payment of any bill is due within 14 days of our sending the bill to you. If any element of a bill is queried, that part of the bill which is not subject to query is to be paid within 14 days. If you have any queries on any bill please raise them with the solicitor with conduct of your matter as soon as possible. If you do not pay the firm within 14 days of our sending the bill to you, we reserve the right to charge you interest at the Law Society’s base rate (applicable from time to time) on the amount outstanding, on a daily basis, from the date the payment is due up to and including the final day of payment.
14.3 We shall be at liberty to apply any sums held on account against any outstanding amounts owed by you to us whether or not the sums held on account relate to any matter where there are outstanding amounts owed by you to us.
14.4 If any amount owed to us remains outstanding for more than 30 days after the despatch of the relevant bill, then until all amounts which you owe us have been paid, we reserve the right to cease acting for you and we will retain all documents and papers belonging to you together with our records.
14.5 If you have a query relating to any bill that we send to you, then you should contact as soon as possible the person who has dealt with your matter to discuss it with them. If you are unable to resolve your query regarding your bill with them, then they will refer it to the firm’s Managing Partner who will deal with the matter under our complaints handling procedure. If you are not satisfied with our handling of your complaint you can ask the Legal Ombudsman at PO Box 15870 Birmingham B30 9EB telephone number: 0300 555 0333, e-mail: email@example.com to consider the complaint. Normally you will need to bring a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within six months of receiving a final written response from us about your compliant. You may also be entitled to have our charges reviewed by the court, this procedure is known as a “detailed assessment”. This procedure is contained in sections 70, 71 and 72 of the Solicitors Act 1974 and in Part 48 of the Civil Procedures Rules 1998. We are entitled to interest on unpaid amounts, including disbursements and VAT, in accordance with Article 5 of the Solicitors’ (Non Contentious Business) Remuneration Order 2009.
- Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 and the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002
15.1 Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 impose obligations on us to obtain sufficient knowledge of clients, their identity, their business and the nature of funds that pass through our accounts. The rules also require us to report any suspicious activity, particularly where we know or suspect that money or property includes the proceeds of any crime.
15.2 If we have any suspicion about your affairs, our obligation to report to the authorities must prevail. An adviser may explain the notification obligation to the client, but will have to withdraw if the client refuses to co-operate. This legal duty overrides the duty of confidentiality that we owe you as a client. We cannot accept any liability for loss where it arises as a result of any such disclosure to the authorities.
15.3 Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 requires us to apply procedures to guard against the risk of money laundering. It will help us avoid any problems with your legal work if you bear in mind the following points.
15.4 Identification Checks and Source of Funds:
15.4.1 We are required to obtain formal evidence of your identity. This may be necessary even though we have acted for you in the past, or even if you are personally known to a member of staff. To verify your identity please provide us with your Passport or Driving Licence and 2 documents to establish your address, such as Bank Statement, recent household bills e.g. electricity, gas, Council Tax bill.
15.4.2 A Money Laundering Check may be carried out at a cost of £10.00 + VAT.
15.4.3 You agree to disclose to us if have you are in any way connected or related to a Politically Exposes Person. A Politically Exposed Person is defined as an individual who is or has, at any time in the preceding year, been entrusted with a prominent public function by a State, Community Institution or an International Body
15.5.1 Our practice’s policy is not to accept cash from clients and to only accept cash up to £750.00. If you try to avoid this policy by depositing cash directly with our bank, we may decide to charge you for any additional checks we decide are necessary to prove the source of the funds. Where we have to pay money to you, it will be paid by cheque or bank transfer. It will not be paid in cash or to a third party.
15.6 Source of Funds:
15.6.1 At the start of any matter we will ask you to tell us the source of any funds you will be using. It is simplest for us if the source is an account, in your name, in a UK bank or building society. If the source is an unusual one, such as an account in another country, or in the name of someone other then yourself, please tell as early as possible, including the reason.
15.7 Destination of Funds
15.7.1 Where we are to pay money out to you, we will normally do so by cheque in your favour, or into an account in your name. If instead you want us to pay surplus money out into the name of someone other than yourself, please tell us as early as possible, including the reason.
15.8 Client Due Diligence
15.8.1 The law requires solicitors to get satisfactory evidence of the identity of their clients and sometimes people related to them. This is because solicitors who deal with money and property on behalf of their client can be used by criminals wanting to launder money. To comply with the law, we need to get evidence of your identity as soon as possible. Our practice is to obtain and verify all identity documentation at the outset. There will be a fee for these searches and you will be informed of the cost and will appear on your bill under expenses. If you cannot provide us with the specific identification requested, please contact us as soon as possible to discuss other ways to verify your identity.
15.9 Mortgage Fraud
15.9.1 We may are also be acting for your proposed lender in a property transaction. We have a duty to fully reveal to your lender all relevant facts about the purchase and mortgage. This includes: 1) any differences between your mortgage application and information we receive during the transaction 2) any cash back payments or discount schemes that a seller is giving you
16.1 Subject to any legal or professional requirements for the time being in force which are applicable to solicitors practising in England the following provisions shall apply.
16.2 We owe an overriding duty of confidentiality to our clients and former clients and may in some circumstances owe a duty of confidentiality to other persons as well. Accordingly you acknowledge that we shall not be required to disclose to you, or use on your behalf any documents or information in our possession if to do so might be a breach of our duty of confidentiality.
16.3 Before accepting your instructions we shall endeavour to ascertain that there is no confidentiality risk which in our professional judgment would render it inappropriate for us to act for you. If having accepted instructions to act for you a confidentiality risk arises or is subsequently discovered we reserve the right to terminate the contract if, in our professional judgment we consider that it would inappropriate to continue to act for you.
- Confidential Information
17.1 You agree that we may disclose confidential information if and to the extent that:
Such disclosure is required by law; or
Such disclosure is authorised by you; or
Such disclosure is permitted by the professional rules applicable to solicitors practising in England; or
Our insurers or other advisers require us to provide details of any matter (or matters) upon which we have acted on your behalf.
- Compliance of Confidentiality and Personal Information
18.1. Professional obligations
18.1.1. Solicitors are under a professional and legal obligation to keep the affairs of clients confidential. This obligation, however, is subject to a number of statutory exceptions such as recent legislation on money laundering and terrorist financing, as well as bribery and the facilitation of tax evasion, which has placed solicitors under a legal duty in certain circumstances to disclose information to the National Crime Agency (NCA) or other relevant authorities. Where a solicitor knows or suspects that a transaction on behalf of a client involves money laundering, the solicitor may be required to make a money laundering disclosure.
18.1.2. If, while we are acting for you, it becomes necessary to make a money laundering disclosure, we may not be able to inform you that a disclosure has been made or of the reasons for it. Where the law permits us to do, we will tell you about any potential money laundering problem and explain what action we may need to take.
18.2. Data Protection and online ID verification
18.2.1. All Personal Data relating to individual clients of Matrix Solicitors, individual directors and/or employees of corporate clients, and anyone else with whom we have professional dealings, will, where applicable, be kept confidential and processed in accordance with the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), other relevant UK and EU legislation and in accordance with the SRA Code of Conduct.
18.2.2.Matrix Solicitors is a data controller for the purposes of GDPR and other relevant data protection legislation. We are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office and our registration number is: Z2570818 and details can be found on: https://ico.org.uk/ESDWebPages/Entry/Z2570818.
We use your Personal Data primarily to provide legal services to you, but also for related purposes as described in our Privacy Notice which can be found here: http://www.matrixsolicitors.co.uk Please read this Privacy Notice carefully as it contains important information on:
– What Personal Data we collect and how that data is collected
– How, why and on what grounds we use your Personal Data
– Who we share Personal Data with
– Where Personal Data is held and how long it will be kept
– How to make a complaint in relation to our use of your Personal Data
– How to contact us with any queries or concerns in relation to your Personal Data
18.2.3. We use online Anti Money Laundering Identification Checks (AML ID Checks) as a primary way of verifying your identity. Any Personal Data obtained by us using those checks, or which you provide to us, is used primarily for the provision of legal services to you and for related purposes including:
– Identity verification in accordance with statutory and professional requirements
– Updating and enhancing client records
– Analysis to help us manage our practice
– Statutory returns
– Legal and regulatory compliance
18.2.4. Our use of your Personal Data is subject to your instructions, the GDPR and our professional duty of confidentiality. Please note that our work for you may require us to share Personal Data with third parties such as expert witnesses and other professional advisers, such as Barristers. You have a right of access under the GDPR and other applicable data protection legislation to the Personal Data that we hold about you, as set out in more detail in our Privacy Notice.
18.3. Review of files
Our practice is subject to audit or quality checks by external regulatory organisations. These external organisations are required to maintain confidentiality in relation to your files.
You will be entitled to use and copy all documentation created by us for you in the scope of our work. All copyright and other intellectual property rights in the documentation created by us and relating to or connected with the scope of our work remains our property. We will be free to use any of the documentation and to use the intellectual property of any advice to other clients provided that we do not breach our duty of confidentiality.
18.5. Electronic communications
18.5.1. We will aim to communicate with you by such a method as you may request. We may need to virus check disks or e-mail. Unless you withdraw consent, we will communicate with others when appropriate by e-mail or fax but we cannot be responsible for the security of correspondence and documents sent by e¬mail or fax.
18.5.2. In addition, if you are a client and we have made a contract with you by electronic means you may be entitled to use an EU online dispute resolution service to assist with any contractual dispute you may have with us. This service can be found at http://ec.europa.eu/odr . Our email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Equality and Diversity
19.1 Matrix Solicitors is committed to promoting equality and diversity in all of its dealings with clients, third parties and employees. Please contact us if you would like a copy of our equality and diversity policy.
- Conflicts of Interest
20.1 Subject to any legal or professional requirements for the time being in force which are applicable to solicitors acting in England the following provisions shall apply.
20.2 Before accepting instructions we shall endeavour to ascertain that there is no conflict of interest which in our professional judgment would render it inappropriate for us to act for you.
20.3 If, having accepted your instructions, a conflict of interest arises or is subsequently discovered we reserve the right to terminate the contract if, in our professional judgment we consider it inappropriate to continue to act for you.
- Experts and Other Advisers
21.1 If we consider it necessary to engage on your behalf any expert or other professional adviser we shall normally consult you before making any appointment in order to discuss the person, firm or company to be appointed and the scope of their retainer. We shall not be responsible for the services provided by such expert or adviser engaged on your behalf. You will be directly responsible for their fees and expenses.
- Compulsory layer of professional indemnity insurance- Provision of Service Regulations 2009
22.1 We comply with the above regulation by displaying the required details of our Professional Indemnity Insurance at our office.
- Distant Selling
In circumstances, where we have not met with you the Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000 apply to this file. This means you have the right to cancel your instructions to us within seven working days of receiving this letter. You can cancel your instructions by contacting us by post or by fax to this office.
Once we have started work on your file, you may be charged if you then cancel your instructions. If you would like us to commence work on your file within the next seven working days, please: sign these terms and conditions and tick the box marked ‘commence work now’ and return it to this office by post or fax
- Providing Exempt Financial Services
24.1 We are not authorised by the Financial Services Authority. If, while we are acting for you, you need advice on investments, we may have to refer you to someone who is authorised to provide the necessary advice.
However, we may provide certain limited investment advice services where these are closely linked to the legal work we are doing for you. This is because we are members of the Law Society of England and Wales, which is a designated professional body for the purposes of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000.
24.2 The Solicitors Regulations Authority is the independent regulatory arm of the Law Society. [The Legal Complaints Service is the independent complaints-handling arm of the Law Society], or, from 6 October 2010, [the Legal Ombudsman deals with complaints against lawyers]. If you are unhappy with any investment advice you receive from us, you should raise your concerns with either of those bodies.
- Providing exempt Insurance Mediation
25.1 We are not authorised by the Financial Services Authority. However, we are included on the register maintained by the Financial Services Authority so that we may carry on insurance mediation activity, which is broadly the advising on, selling and administration of insurance contracts. This part of our business, including arrangements for complaints or redress if something goes wrong, is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. The register can be accessed via the Financial Services website at www.fsa.gov.uk/register.
25.2 The Law Society of England and Wales is a designated professional body for the purposes of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. The Solicitors Regulation Authority is the independent regulatory arm of the Law Society. [The Legal Complaints Service is the independent complaints-handling arm of the Law Society] or from 6 October 2010 [The Legal Ombudsman deals with complaints against lawyers]. If you are unhappy with any insurance advice you receive from us, you should raise your concerns with either of those bodies.
- Tax Advice
We do not generally provide advice on the tax implications of a transaction that you instruct us to carry out or the likelihood of them arising. You should therefore seek the advice of your Accountant or independent Tax Advisor. If you have any concerns, please raise them with us immediately.
27.1 Matrix Solicitors is committed to high quality legal advice and client care. If you are unhappy about any aspect of the service you have received or about the bill, please contact Mr Basharit Mohammad on 01332 363454 or by post to our office. We have a procedure in place which details how we handle complaints which is available A copy of this can be made available to you on request.
27.2 If you are not satisfied with our handling of your complaint you can ask the Legal Complaints Service at Victoria Court, 8 Dormer Place, Leamington Spa, Warwickshire CV32 5AE telephone number: 0845 608 6565, fax number: 01926 431435, e-mail: email@example.com or from the 6 October 2010 the Legal Ombudsman at PO Box 15870 Birmingham B30 9EB telephone number: 0300 555 0333, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org to consider the complaint. Normally you will need to bring a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within six months of receiving a final written response from us about your compliant.
28.1 You may end your instructions to us in writing at any time, but we can keep all your papers and documents while there is still money owed to us for fees and expenses. We may decide to stop acting for you only with good reason, eg if you do not pay an interim bill or there is a conflict of interest. We must give you reasonable notice that we will stop acting for you. If you or we decide that we should stop acting for you, you will pay our charges up until that point. These are calculated on [an hourly basis plus expenses/by proportion of the agreed fee] as set out in these terms and conditions.
- Retention and storage of documents
29.1 Subject to any agreement to the contrary at the conclusion of your matter we shall:
(a) At your request return to you any documents to which you are entitled;
(b) After completing the work, we will be entitled to keep all your papers and documents while there is still money owed to us for fees and expenses. We will keep our file of your papers for up to 6 years, except those papers that you ask to be returned to you. We keep files on the understanding that we can destroy them 6 years after the date of the final bill. We will not destroy documents you ask us to deposit in safe custody.
If we take papers or documents out of storage in relation to continuing or new instructions to act for you, we will not normally charge for such retrieval. However we may charge you both for time spent producing stored papers that are requested reading, correspondence or other work necessary to comply with your instructions in relation to the retrieved papers.
- Outsourcing of work
30.1 Sometimes we ask other companies or people to do [typing/photocopying/other work] on our files to ensure this is done promptly. We will always seek a confidentiality agreement with these outsourced providers. If you do not want your file to be outsourced, please tell us as soon as possible.
- Vetting of files and confidentiality
31.1 External firms or organisations may conduct audit or quality checks on our practice. These external firms or organisations are required to maintain confidentiality in relation to your files.
- Limiting liability
32.1 Our liability to you for a breach of your instructions shall be limited to three million pounds, unless we expressly state a higher amount in the letter accompanying these terms of business. We will not be liable for any consequential, special, indirect or exemplary damages, costs or losses or any damages, costs or losses attributable to lost profits or opportunities.
32.2 We accept no Liability whatsoever for losses arising from any third parties failing to act upon or carry out our instructions in your matter, for example if we request a transfer from our client account and our bank fails to act to process our request on time or at all for whatever reason.
We can only limit our liability to the extent the law allows. In particular, we cannot limit our liability for death or personal injury caused by our negligence.
Please ask if you would like us to explain any of the terms above.
- Law and jurisdiction
33.1 Any dispute or legal issue arising from our terms of business will be determined by the law of England and Wales, and considered exclusively by the English and Welsh courts.
34 Application of these terms and amendments
34.1 These terms supersede any earlier terms of business we may have agreed with you and, in the absence of express agreement to the contrary, shall apply to the services referred to in the Retainer Letter (if any) and all subsequent services we provide to you.
34.2 From time to time it may be necessary for us to amend or supersede these terms by new terms. Where this is the case we shall notify you of the proposed changes and unless we hear from you to the contrary within 14 days after such notification, the amendments or new terms will come into effect from the end of that period.