Most instructions are accepted on the basis of fixed hourly rates of charge, the details of which are set out in writing and agreed before work begins. Our current hourly rates can be found here.
In appropriate cases the firm will consider a conditional fee agreement (“CFA”) or a damages-based agreement (“DBA”) which has the effect of making the firm’s remuneration conditional upon an agreed measure of success. The quid pro quo is that, if the agreed measure of success is achieved, the firm will charge a success fee or be entitled to a portion of the damages awarded. Such arrangements are generally supported by commercial funding and insurance.
Whilst it is the policy of the firm to ask clients to pay all substantial disbursements (including barristers’ and experts’ fees and court, arbitral and mediation fees) as they fall due for payment, minor disbursements will be added to the firm’s invoices and payment may therefore be deferred.
The firm’s invoices will normally be produced on a monthly basis, depending on the volume of work undertaken, and will be due for settlement within 30 days.
In no circumstances will the firm charge clients for travel time. Neither does it generally charge travel expenses within the UK. Overseas meetings are treated similarly although travel expenses from the UK to overseas destinations need to be charged since these can be substantial.
The firm recognises its ethical responsibility to devote a fair proportion of its resources to the representation of members of the public who cannot afford to pay for the services of a lawyer. Humphries Kerstetter LLP aims to spend approximately 5% of normal working hours on pro bono publico representation in the field of complex civil disputes.