Earlier this year, the Law Society of Scotland introduced price transparency guidance for lawyers. The reason for this is to allow people to compare legal fees without having to speak to a solicitor. However, not all price transparency is equal and in this article we’ll highlight a few things you might want to watch out for.
We’ve always embraced price transparency. It’s best to be up front with clients on what it’ll cost for us to look after their legal affairs. Whether it’s buying or selling a house, making a Will or dealing with an estate, it’s important clients know what that costs. That’s why we’ve published full and complete information about our fees on our website. You can visit our fees pages by clicking here.
What does Price Transparency Guidance for lawyers cover?
It covers all of what you’d consider “consumer” types of law. That’s the kind of legal services that traditional High Street law firms provide to clients. From our perspective, these include:
- Buying a house
- Selling a house
- Re-mortgage and equity release
- Making a Will
- Making a Power of Attorney
- Dealing with an Estate
- Separation Agreements
There are other areas of law which are also subject to this guidance – it’s just that we don’t provide those services. However, if you are looking for help in other areas not on this list, please get in touch and we’ll refer you to someone who does.
Are there services not covered by price transparency guidance?
We provide a wide range of commercial law services including commercial sale and purchase, commercial leasing and commercial re-financing. We also advise clients on partnership agreements and other business requirements. These types of services are not included in the Law Society of Scotland guidance. These are not considered to be “consumer” types of law.
What’s included in the guidance?
The guidance requires solicitors to state what fee they will charge for a particular type of work. The figure should also show the cost including VAT. In addition, any charges that are paid to other parties need to be included and explained and a total cost, including VAT should be shown.
Solicitors also need to explain precisely what’s included for the price they’ve quoted and, importantly, what’s not included!
Clearly, no two cases are the same and, sometimes, problems can crop up in transactions. When that happens, we explain the nature of the problem, what is involved in resolving it. Unfortunately, this invariably involves additional costs. When this happens we’ll let you know and give you an indication of the level of additional costs.
If you are shopping around to find out how much your legal fees will be, please make sure the website you view includes not only the fee but also the VAT, outlays and expenses. You should also check what the fee covers to make sure you don’t pick up “unexpected extras”.
Please complete the following form if you’d like your personal detailed fee quote for the work you’d like us to do for you: