Chris is often asked how much he charges for a forensic report. The cheeky answer is to ask how long’s a piece of string! But that isn’t very helpful. There are three questions which ought to be asked:
- Do you understand my case, and do you have the experience and technical ability to handle it?
- How much would you charge for a report on this particular case? And
- What are the likely cost/benefits of instructing you?
Chris answers these questions with his initial review without obligation. Except for the very largest cases, where a fee may have to charged from the outset:
- He asks for the key documents;
- He reads them and types his own notes on them,
- He shares those notes with the instructing party to show that he understands the case;
- He includes in those notes the likely benefit, as far as one can at this early stage, of using his services; and
- He provides either a fixed fee for the report, or an estimate as close as he can.
That review is sent to the instructing party or solicitor. If, for whatever reason, potential instructions are not confirmed, the papers are returned or destroyed, THERE IS NO CHARGE WHATSOEVER, and Chris doesn’t even sulk!
So you can find out, with no charge and no obligation to instruct Chris, whether he can add value to your case.
Chris is transparent about his mediation fees, and pitches them low so as to encourage mediation between parties. He feels mediation can solve problems for so many people in dispute. This is why he still uses the old scale of fees published in April 2009 by the late lamented National Mediation Helpline (NMH), based on the amount in dispute, which he has still not increased, as follows:
|Value of dispute||Fee per party|
|Up to £5,000 – Small claim 1*||No charge for preparation; £50 for a mediation of up to 1 hour|
|Up to £5,000 – Small claim 2*||No charge for preparation; £100 for a mediation of up to 2 hours; excess hours at £50 per hour or part|
|£5,000 to £15,000 – Fast Track||No charge for preparation; £300 for a mediation of up to 3 hours; excess hours at £100 per hour or part|
|£15,000 to £50,000 – Multi Track||No charge for preparation; £425 for a mediation up to 4 hours; excess hours at £107 per hour or part|
|£50,000 to £100,000**||No charge for preparation; £525 for a mediation up to 5 hours; excess hours at £140 per hour or part|
|Over £100,000||As agreed with the mediator|
Fees for a mediation lasting more than a day are as agreed with the mediator.
Fees for mediations where the dispute is of no identifiable value are by negotiation.
These fees are based on single claimant & defendant disputes. If there is more than one claimant or defendant then, as was advised by the NMH, the length of the mediation session may need to be increased, and the next tariff applied. Chris will discuss this with you if you wish, when the mediation is being arranged.
All charges are plus VAT, plus significant expenses such as travelling or overnight accommodation. Chris reserves the right to make a charge for preparation time where the documents to be studied are substantial, or where for example with a partnership dissolution dispute, or a case with several heads of claim bearing their own litigation risk, it is helpful to the parties for him to prepare an interactive spread sheet in advance.
Without exception, fees are to be paid equally by each party; and the basic fee + VAT and estimated disbursements must always be paid before the mediation commences.
The following scale of cancellation charges applies + VAT:
|Time When Mediation Cancelled||Amount Payable By Each Party|
|Within 2 working days of time and date fixed||Their share of full fee|
|Between 2 and 5 working days of time and date fixed||£50 or 50% of full fee, whichever is greater|
|After date is agreed but more than 5 working days before that agreed date||£50|
Mediation requires a room large enough for everyone to sit around the table together for the joint meetings, and then separate rooms for each party and their advisers, which are reasonably close together but soundproof from one another.
One party’s premises or their solicitor’s offices may be used provided there is no suggestion that the other party may feel at any kind of disadvantage.
Chris can provide rooms should you require them, at modest cost at his rooms in Gray’s Inn Square, London. Alternatively rooms may be hired in local hotels, or serviced offices such as those offered by Regus.
It is the responsibility of the parties to find the rooms and to meet their cost.
Whether the appointment comes directly, or from the panel of expert determiners maintained by the President of ICAEW, Chris will always agree his charging structure with the parties before the assignment gets under way. All such fees are payable to him equally between the parties. Although he is usually given the power to award payment of his fees other than equally – this is rare, but it might be the result of one party not cooperating in the process, thus causing extra costs – such an allocation would be within his award, and he would still require each party to pay their equal share of his fees before his award may be published.
Professional Negligence Insurance
Chris’s professional negligence insurers are Lloyd’s Syndicate 2526, AG Doré & Others, whose brokers are CBC UK Limited, Mansell Court, 69 Mansell Street, London E1 8AN.
Contact Chris to discuss further options and details on how you can work together.