I can’t believe we are approaching the end of summer already but what a busy time it has been. I went along to a number of events including the Four Elms Grand Fete, a huge event with loads going on and celebrating its 62nd year – fantastic!
Now, back to the world of The Barrister Broker and how I help people reduce their legal costs…
For the benefit of new readers, I am not a lawyer and cannot give legal advice. I am a freelance barristers’ clerk and facilitator providing individuals and businesses with an alternative way to deal with their legal issues that is quicker and costing less overall compared to the traditional method.
There is a growing trend these days for people to deal with legal issues themselves rather than put their case in the hands of a lawyer. It might be to save money or because of a distrust of lawyers but whatever the reason the courts are seeing an increase in people representing themselves – known as litigants in person.
In my experience there are three types of litigant in person:
- people who wouldn’t use a lawyer under any circumstances – they are excited at the prospect of representing themselves in court (a vexatious litigant would likely appear in this category);
- people who are unable to get legal aid for whatever reason but don’t have any or sufficient private means to pay for legal representation; or
- people who have private means but chose not to go down the traditional route of using a solicitor. They can be businesses or individuals but know their limitations and are open to alternative ways of working. They feel confident in project-managing their case, i.e. corresponding directly with the other party and the court, writing general letters, making decisions, gathering evidence, etc., but accept that they don’t have the knowledge/skills needed when it comes to the law or presenting their case in court, which might adversely affect the outcome of their case. So they will do as much of their case as they can (where big savings are made) but seek the use of an independent legal expert for the legal aspects of their case.
My clients are those in category 3; who are able to pay for legal services (sometimes with the help of parents or others) and want to take responsibility for their legal matter as much as possible but still receive expert legal advice along the journey. This is where I come in by arranging the legal expert, a barrister, to assist the client.
The barrister’s assistance can vary from simply giving legal advice on the merits of a potential claim (i.e. a legal opinion saying whether a proposed form of action is likely to succeed or not if it went to court) or representation at a court hearing. For the most part work is undertaken on a “fixed fee” basis so the client knows what the costs will be before the work is undertaken.
If you are going through a divorce or non-married relationship breakup and are in dispute over the finances, i.e. who gets what, or arrangements for the children (contact and residence), or a business dispute – e.g. breach of contract – and you want to save costs by managing your case but hire a barrister to help you, then you should give me a call on 01732 866 562. www.thebarristerbroker.com
by: Russell Burton-Lawrence, The Barrister Broker
Featured in: Issue 78 – September/October 2015