When you ask a lawyer to assist you there are occasions when the relationship may break down for one reason or another.
This could be because you are unhappy with advice or actions taken or simply a personality clash. Whatever the reason, you always have options to change your lawyer if you are unhappy.
Examples of where matters can go wrong with your lawyer
- You may not agree with the advice or strategy given to you on your case
- There may be conflict in the decisions made about you or your case
- Sometimes during a litigation case, interim funds are obtained for the client in part payment of their litigation. There may be a difference in opinions on how those funds are managed
- You may be unhappy with the length of time it takes for your solicitor to respond to you
What can I do?
The first step would be to talk to your solicitor and see if you can resolve the issues, it may just be that he or she isn’t aware of how you feel and sitting down face to face or communicating with your solicitor may iron out a lot. Your solicitor or the partner in charge of the work may suggest a different fee earner if there are personality issues.
If the above step doesn’t work then you can talk to another solicitor about your problem. Most solicitors will offer a no obligation telephone call free of charge to understand the issues. It may be that you have a case manager or other professional working with you who could also point you in the direction of someone to discuss your case with, almost like a getting a second opinion.
It may be that the new solicitor advises you to go back to your existing solicitor and try out a few other strategies. However if the client-solicitor relationship has broken down or you are really unhappy then you have the freedom to change solicitors. Your new solicitor will require you to sign an authority to transfer your case and then will deal with the paperwork on your behalf.
A client instructs and a solicitor advises. Sometimes a client may not have the understanding to instruct a solicitor due to a lack of capacity. In these cases a capacity assessment can be obtained to confirm this. A litigation friend can be appointed to act on behalf of a client who cannot instruct their own solicitor. A litigation friend can also seek to instruct another solicitor on behalf of the client if the client and/or the litigation friend is not happy with the service. A litigation friend could be someone you trust such as a family member or sometimes it could be your Deputy or Solicitor. If your solicitor acts as a litigation friend they will have a duty of care to act in the client’s best interests and so should always consider transferring a case if there is a breakdown in the relationship.
Solicitors are also regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and if you are unhappy with the service of a solicitor you would firstly make a complaint to the partner or person that supervises your solicitor. If you were still unhappy with the firm you can also make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman.
You can access a list of accredited solicitors on our panel that specialise in brain injury compensation work and mental capacity here www.braininjurygroup.co.uk/court-of-protection-panel/.
About Asha Beswetherick
Asha is an experienced mental capacity lawyer who has specialised in Court of Protection work for over 10 years. She deals with complex Court of Protection matters relating to property and affairs and mental capacity as well as working with the elderly.
About Enable Law
Enable Law is a specialist medical law and personal injury practice with offices across the South West, South Coast and London.
How can Brain Injury Group help?
Brain Injury Group is a network of approved personal injury solicitors with brain injury expertise. Moreover, our member firms have the complex injury experience to get the best possible rehabilitation and compensation for brain injuries.
Brain injury rehabilitation is important; to us, to our members, to you and towards getting the best outcome. We can help get you that best outcome. Get in touch to find out more from our brain injury experts.
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