Different driving offences come with different penalties and fines. Some offences are more serious than others. Many driving offences will require court appearances and, in these cases, legal representation should be viewed as a necessity.
Funding Driving Offence Matters and Transparency Rules 2018:
The Solicitors Regulation Authority require us to comply with certain regulations concerning information provided to potential clients who wish to be represented in certain motoring/driving matters.
The Transparency Rules relate to cases that can only be tried in the Magistrate’s Court which are dealt with in one hearing. These are Summary only driving offences under Part I of the Road Traffic Act 1988 and s89 of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984.
For Magistrates and Crown Court cases that are not covered by these regulations and where legal aid is unobtainable, we will give a written estimate of our charges before you decide to instruct us and before you incur any costs. Please see our Private fee page for further information.
This is how Stephen Lickrish & Solicitors comply with the Transparency Regulations relating to single hearing Magistrates only motoring/driving matters under the above Acts:
The wording of the rules we have to comply with and our responses are below.
The total cost of the service
We will undertake such single hearing Magistrates only motoring/driving cases for a fixed fee of £600 (this includes VAT, which is charged at 20%). Additional costs will include disbursements and expenses.
The experience and qualifications of anyone carrying out the work and of their supervisors
All our Directors and Solicitors are highly qualified to handle the driving offences included in this Act. You can view this information and the complete staff profiles by clicking on this link or view the staff profiles from the Home page, by scrolling down to the box labelled “staff profiles”.
There may be circumstances when you may wish to appoint a barrister to attend your hearing. This will be agreed with you in advance and they will be a qualified advocate in this area of law. It is impossible to provide an exact costing for the barrister’s services in advance, however from experience a barrister costs can range from £360 (this includes VAT, which is charged at 20%) to £900 (this includes VAT, which is charged at 20%) for attendance at a single hearing. The difference in the costings are dependent on the experience of the appointed barrister. Please Note this is not included in the fixed fee costings provided.
There may also be another circumstance where we may appoint a qualified agent, an experienced advocate, who can make the relevant representations at court. Again, this will be agreed with you in advance. Their services, for that one hearing, will be included in the fixed fee cost.
Our Directors are recognised as supervisors by the Legal Aid Agency and will always supervise the care and conduct of your case.
A description of and cost of any likely disbursements and Expenses
If there are any disbursements or expenses we will discuss these with you beforehand so you know exactly what the cost will be. Note: we don’t make a profit on disbursements or expenses, we only charge you the actual cost we have paid for the expenditure agreed by you in advance.
Disbursements are expenses we have to pay out on your behalf. We will agree these with you in advance. Disbursements can include the cost of a barrister when attending in place of our Director/Solicitor. It is impossible to provide an exact costing for this disbursement as the qualification and experience of a Barrister can vary substantially and would need to be agreed at the time. An indication of the range of costs are detailed above.
Further costs incurred in such cases relate to expenses. Expenses are incurred when Directors/solicitors, barristers, or agents travel to court. Expenses include mileage and parking fees if travelling by car OR public transport costs (if travelling by train and/or taxi). If travelling by car, mileage costs are incurred at a rate of 45p per mile plus VAT (charged at 20%). The total number of miles claimed will be dependent on the route travelled by the solicitor/barrister/solicitor agent travelling from their place of work to the court where your case is being heard.
Whether any fees or disbursements attract VAT and the amount
VAT is charged for our services, disbursements and expenses at a rate of 20%.
Details of what services are included in the price displayed including key stages of the matter and likely timescales for each stage and details of any service that might reasonably be expected to be included in the price displayed but are not
The service we give in such cases includes the following:
- Maximum of two hours attendance or preparation, this includes :
- Considering the evidence
- Providing advice in relation to plea [“guilty or not guilty”]
- Explanation of the sentencing options open to the court and where possible, we will tell you the sentence we expect to be handed down by the court.
- Advice on representations we can make to the court on sentence, where the court has a discretion such as exceptional hardship or “special reasons” for not disqualifying a driver who would otherwise be disqualified from driving or disqualifying for a shorter period e.g. because they would lose their job e.g. HGV driver.
- Up to 30 minutes travelling time
- Representation in court at a single hearing
- Representations at the hearing are made by the firms Solicitors/Directors or an agent appointed by the firm who is highly qualified in dealing with summary only motoring offences.
The fixed fee does not include:
- instruction of any expert witnesses
- taking statements from any witnesses
- advice and assistance in relation to a “special reasons” hearing
- advice or assistance in relation to any appeal
- More than one hearing
- Preparation for or representation in a trial
- Excess of 30 minutes travelling time
- The appointment of a barrister to represent you at the single hearing
The key stages of your matter are based on the presumption that your matter will be dealt with in one hearing.
- Meet with your solicitor to provide instructions on what happened.
- We will consider initial disclosure, and any other evidence and provide advice.
- Arranging to take any witness statements if necessary (this will have an additional cost, of £100 plus VAT per statement).
- We will explain the court procedure to you so you know what to expect on the day of your hearing, and the sentencing options available to the court.
- We will conduct any further preparatory work, obtain further instructions from you if necessary and answer any follow up queries you have.
- We cannot provide a timescale of when your hearing will take place, as this depends on the court listing for that day.
- We will attend court on the day and meet with you before going before the court. We anticipate being at court for up to half a day.
- We will discuss the outcome with you. If advice is required on appeal, this will carry an additional cost.
CONTACT OUR DRIVING OFFENCES LAWYERS IN MANCHESTER
If you have been accused of a driving offence, and would like a free initial discussion with one of our solicitors about the services we offer, contact us to see how we can help you.