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What is a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA)?

Following on from last month’s contentious probate article, Contentious Probate: How Much and Who Pays, we go into detail about one particular way in which clients can instruct a solicitor: using a CFA.

What is a CFA?

A conditional fee agreement is an agreement between a client and their lawyer where payment of the lawyer depends on the result of the client’s case. The more technical definition is: “an agreement with a person providing advocacy or litigation services which provides for his/her fees and expenses, or any part of them, to be payable only in specified circumstances”.

Usually they come in the form of “no win, no fee” agreements but there are various other forms they can take. Essentially, though, they are funding arrangements which differ from the usual hourly rate model of paying for legal representation.

How and why are they used?

CFAs cannot be used for all areas of law, but most are covered. They can be used in contentious probate matters/inheritance disputes.

Both solicitors and barristers can be instructed on CFAs, but it depends on whether the solicitor/barrister is willing to do so. On the usual “no win, no fee” basis it is likely that a solicitor/barrister will only be willing to work on a CFA basis if the chances of success in the client’s case are high.

A few advantages to the client of a CFA

Generally, the client only has to pay for disbursements as the case progresses. The client will also only have to pay disbursements if they lose the case. It means that the client and the lawyer share the risks of litigating. Importantly, CFAs provide a means for a client to pursue their case where they previously would not have been able to due to their particular circumstances.

A more detailed discussion on the merits and pitfalls of a CFA is beyond the scope of this article but it is something we can advise on.

Can I instruct you on a CFA?

We are always willing to discuss alternative payment arrangements and therefore we may be able to assist you on a CFA basis. At Barrett & Co we always discuss your particular needs to suit your circumstances. If you would like an assessment of your case, then we provide fixed fee meetings at a cost of £95. Please call us to book a meeting on 0118 958 9711.


Further Reading:

Funding Litigation Part 1: Conditional Fee Agreements

Funding Litigation Part 2: Understanding CFAs and DBAs

Contentious Probate: How Much and Who Pays?

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Get in Touch

If you would like further information, Nicholas Buckle offers an initial one hour fixed fee meeting at a cost of £95 (inc. VAT). During these meeting we can discuss your personal circumstances, options and possible next steps. Nick specialises on a broad range of contentious probate matters.

Due to the current circumstances, meetings can occur via telephone. We are hoping that meetings at our office in Reading can occur soon. Please call the office on 0118 9589711 or email [email protected] if you would like to book a meeting.

"barrettandco" and "Barrett & Co" are trading names of Barrett & Co Solicitors LLP, a Limited Liability Partnership incorporated in England and Wales under registration number OC356263, with registered office at Salisbury House, 54 Queens Road, Reading, Berkshire RG1 4AZ. Barrett & Co Solicitors LLP is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority www.sra.org.uk (SRA Number 549694).

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