No Win No Fee – Is it really that simple?
Some firms are advertising that they will only charge you if they are successful. is it really that simple? The big questions for you are what will they charge you if you win and what will you have to pay if you lose?
Some of these firms have a base fee. For example, Employment Disputes Services Ltd or 0800SACKED, has a contract that says that out of your compensation they will take one third, a base fee, plus GST (the base fee); and if the matter goes to the Employment Relations Authority, they will charge in addition to the base fee, an extra $1500.00 per day of hearing or $750.00 plus GST where the case settles prior to hearing but after they have prepared your briefs of evidence and submissions, plus the $70.00 filing fee. But as with all contracts you need to check the small print. The small print in the EDS Ltd contract says that if you withdraw your case against advice, make excessive phone calls then they reserve the right to charge you at $140.00 per hour and for phone charges.
Finally, what does their contract say will happen if you lose? Nothing. As a general rule the Employment Relations Authority will award costs against you. In practice this means that for a one day hearing you could be ordered to pay your employer $3,500.00 as a contribution towards their costs. Therefore, if you truly want to have a no win, no fee contract then ask the likes of EDS Ltd whether they will pay the $3,500.00 you might be ordered to pay your employer should you lose. Don’t be surprised if the answer is No.
More importantly, before you take on a solicitor or advocate to represent you, make certain that you find out about their reputation and background. Judging the person or firm solely on the fees they charge, the size of the firm, the titles lawyer and consultant may mislead you about the quality of the services you will get. In saying this, we wish to make it clear that we are not impliedly or expressly claiming that the services you will receive from EDS Ltd or any other company or firm charging on the basis of no win, no fee is not of good quality.
- For more information on 0800sacked see our blog Serious Concerns with Conduct of No Win No Fee Provider
Published on Monday, May 23rd, 2016, under Blog