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Repeal Damages-Based Agreements Regulations 2010

Comment 2nd July 2010

Repeal Damages-Based Agreements Regulations 2010

Why does this matter?

These regulations came into force earlier this year.

They prescribe a maximum percentage fee and also require pre-agreement information.

The problems are:

1. Extra paperwork, often irrelevent. The regs force lawyers to explain agreements twice!

2. Bad for lawyers and public – the regs make it uneconomic for lawyers to take low-value employment cases on a no-win no-fee basis.

3. Unfair – the maximum percentage is inclusive of vat, so an increase in vat rate means a pay cut.

4. Anticompetitive – the regs set 35% plus barrister’s fees. Thus if a solicitor instructs counsel, the clients pays 35% plus cost of advocacy. But if the solicitor undertakes her own advocacy, the cost is included in the 35% maximum.

These regulations are bad for consumers, bad for solicitors and anti-competitive.

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