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Can i limit the use of my solicitor?

  • estranged_father
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27 Sep 12 #358210 by estranged_father
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Hi,

I have instructed a solicitor for the sole purpose of instructing my barrister (they are not direct access).

However, my ex is firing letters to my solicitior and we are in danger of entering into litigation frenzy!

I am perfectly able to respond to these letters but as i have a solicitor on file, can i deal with this direct or are there rules in place on this?

Thankyouuuuu!

  • u6c00
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27 Sep 12 #358212 by u6c00
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You are perfectly within your rights to instruct a solicitor not to deal with correspondence.

Write to your ex and state that your solicitor is not instructed to deal with correspondence and you would be grateful if she would address all correspondence to you.

Instruct your solicitor not to deal with any letters from your ex as well. That should save you the costs!

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27 Sep 12 #358217 by tinkerbell1606
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I was advised that my solicitor had to respond to the other side even when I requested that they didn''t!
In the interests of courtesy, the only way I was able to stem the flow was to take my solicitor off court record.

  • .Charles
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27 Sep 12 #358226 by .Charles
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u6c00 wrote:

You are perfectly within your rights to instruct a solicitor not to deal with correspondence.


That’s not strictly true. It depends if your solicitor is on the record as acting. If not, you are correct.

Instruct your solicitor not to deal with any letters from your ex as well. That should save you the costs!


Again, this depends whether your solicitor is on the record. If s/he is, they have a professional obligation to answer communications or face sanctions from their governing body.

When you instruct a solicitor to act on your behalf, you effectively contract them to act in your place. Dipping in and out of your own case does you no favours.

As an example a colleague of mine saw his client who had prepared a draft letter to send to the other side. The letter contained an offer and dealt with a whole host of issues. It was also ambiguous. My colleague explained that it was probably better if he drafted an offer. The client said this would cost him money that he did not wish to spend.

My colleague then went on to explain that as his draft letter was open (rather than without prejudice as was intended) and made offers without caveats (offering a fixed sum which would leave the client with a negative amount if the property did not sell at full market value) and these issues along with other comments in the letter left the client at a disadvantage. The client said he had given no consideration to these issues and instructed my colleague to prepare an appropriate letter.

To save cost, the best thing to do it do the work yourself and go and see a solicitor to help you when you ‘get stuck’ by seeking advice on specific issues or to complete statements, affidavits or applications.

Dealing with the communications yourself will save a lot, particularly if your ex is a nutbar. What you cannot do is instruct a solicitor to act for you officially and pick and choose which letters s/he should respond to.

Charles

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27 Sep 12 #358235 by u6c00
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Thanks Charles, that''s very helpful to know.

My ex wrote to me a couple of weeks ago and told me that her solicitor was not instructed to deal with correspondence. I have a solicitor who is providing ad hoc advice and instructing a barrister for hearings. I asked her about this and she said that if the client instructs the solicitor not to deal with correspondence then that''s her choice.

We then went to court on Monday and the solicitor said that she was dealing with correspondence again. On Wednesday my ex emailed me to say she had disinstucted her solicitor and all correspondence herself.

I''m very confused now!

  • sleepybird
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27 Sep 12 #358238 by sleepybird
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Hello

In my experience if you ''instruct'' a solictitor then they deal with everything on your behalf.

My partner visited a solicitor before his court case and she confirmed the above. what she suggested was that instead of instructing her we could just instead pay on account

i.e we pay £500, we use her as and when we need her and the cost is deducted from the account. She will give us a break down and let us know when the account is running low. that left us open to reply to everything from her solicitor ourselves and use her when we needed to.

This would have also meant that we couldve just had a barrister for the days in court etc.

We decided against it in the end and have done everything ourselves so far and to be honest, although its a bit stressful, with the help of this forum and lots of patience we have saved ourselves a fortune in solictiors fees.

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