Public Access

Middlesbrough Fountain Chambers

Contact Us Directly

A number of barristers undertake direct access work. Those barristers who are authorised to do so indicate that in their own profiles.The following are indications of the type of work which may be provided by members of Chambers:

  • Private law children,
  • Financial remedy,
  • TOLATA,
  • Inquests,
  • Police disciplinary hearings,
  • Crime (dependent on the type of case – please enquire),
  • Civil cases (dependent on the type of case – please enquire).

Fixed Fee

The fee payable for your individual piece of work will be discussed and agreed with you in advance.  Members of Chambers charge VAT. We normally ask that payment is received in advance of any work being undertaken / attendance at any hearing. Normally members of Chambers will agree a “fixed fee” with you for the piece of work they are undertaking. This will be the fee you pay and it will not normally change. The circumstances in which it may change are:

  • A hearing taking longer than originally agreed (e.g. a 1 day case having to come back for a second day).
  • A hearing taking less time than originally agreed (e.g. a 2 day case resolving on day 1).
  • There being more documentation to review than originally understood at the time the fee was agreed.
  • The case becoming more complex than originally understood at the time the fee was agreed (e.g. more parties becoming involved in the proceedings).
  • A case requiring additional time due to the behaviour of the other parties involved in it.

The same factors may also affect the timescale in which the work can be undertaken.

Or Hourly Rate

In some circumstances it may be more appropriate to agree an hourly rate for the work being done. The individual rates of members of Chambers vary depending on the seniority of the barrister and the complexity of the proceedings. Again, this will be discussed and agreed with you in advance of any work commencing.

Unless the barrister you instruct is also authorised to “conduct litigation” there are certain things they will not be able to do for you. These include: being named on the court record as representing you and receiving documents from the court on your behalf; file documents at court, serve documents on the other parties and enter into correspondence with the other parties or any experts involved. This can be discussed in more detail if you decide to instruct a direct access barrister.

 

All of this information will be provided to you in a client care letter, in advance of work starting, unless the instructions are urgent and there is not sufficient time.

Public Access – Financial Remedy Proceedings

Our barristers can advise you if you and your former partner cannot agree on financial matters during or after a divorce. For example, you may not be able to agree on how assets should be divided, whether to see your home or other assets, maintenance payments or pension sharing.

If you cannot agree, you can apply to a court for a financial order. You may need to attend a number of court hearings. Our barristers can represent you in these hearings.

Timescales

Timescales for your case may vary depending of factors such as the barristers’ availability, the value and complexity of your assets, whether you have children, how much you have already agreed with your former partner and their approach. Written advice on your financial dispute will be available within 21 days where possible. As a guide, court hearings for a financial order tend to take 6 to 12 months. This does not include possible appeals.

Fees

We may charge fixed fees, which means we will charge you a set amount of money for the work. Below we provide estimates based on a range of fixed fees for barristers in Fountain Chambers, where the parties have joint assets which are worth less than £300,000. All fees include VAT (where applicable).

If we charge fixed fees these may be towards the higher end of the range if you need a more experienced barrister. If you have a particularly complex case your fees may also be higher than the estimates below. There are also likely to be additional costs if, for example, a number of meetings are required to undertake your case.

Stage of case Ranges of fixed fees (estimates)
Written advice on your financial dispute £350-£750
Preparation of case, including meetings with you (a conference) and assistance with the drafting of any court documents

£300-£650 per occasion

 

First Appointment (first court hearing exchanging financial information) £850 – £1200
Financial Dispute Resolution Appointment (second court hearing to reach a financial settlement) £1200-£1800
First day of final hearing (if no settlement was reach in the Financial Dispute Resolution appointment)

£1500-£2500

 

Court appearances per day, after the first day of the final hearing £1000-£1500
Hourly Rate

There are circumstances where we may agree that an hourly rate is more appropriate. In those circumstances estimates of hourly rates are set out below. The complexity of your case and the seniority of the barrister may affect the hourly rate charged.

Stage of case Ranges of fixed fees (estimates)
Written advice on your financial dispute £150-£300
Preparation of case, including meetings with you and assistance with the drafting of any court documents £150-£300
First Appointment (first court hearing exchanging financial information) £150-£300
Financial Dispute Resolution Appointment (second court hearing to reach a financial settlement) £250-£400
First day of final hearing (if no settlement was reach in the Financial Dispute Resolution appointment) £250-£400
Court appearances per day, after the first day of the final hearing £150-£300

All information is correct as of 26th March 2021 but fees are estimates only. For a quotation please contact the clerks on family@fountainchambers.co.uk. Please contact the clerks if you and your former partner have joint assets which are worth more than £300,000

Our Direct Access Team

 

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