Yes, interest would accrue at 10% I think - I'm not doing legal aid work these days so I am not 100% sure of that, but it's a sight more than the 6.5% charged in real terms by a mortgage lender, that's for sure. So don't defer if you can help it. Keep chasing that solicitor!
Finally, endless phone calls and sleepless nights, I manage to talk to the acting solicitor. she confirm that it was an oversight from her department. I told her that she have to hand over the money to LSC and I will settle the outstanding cost with LSC if any. She is still keen that I hand over the balance of the cost of £1500 to her. Can I insist that I would like to settle the outstanding balance with legal services myself. She had sent the cost to court already even when I disagree with the cost. She was able to talk around me and end up getting her views over. Now the total bill is around £14K in comparison to the over £25K Thanks Will.
You are *still* entitled to see the bill in full detail and to challenge any item in it that you think was unnecessary, took too long or is inadmissible for any other reason. I can't think of any oversight in the office that would reduce the bill from £25k to £14k at a stroke unless they tried to bill you at private client rates instead of legal aid rates.
If they have sent it to Court to have detailed assessment you are entitled to be heard at the costs hearing. Insist on having your own full copy of the legal aid bill and details of when the matter will be heard. Write to the Court if you are still unhappy about the amount of the bill, ensure they are aware that you want to attend when it is dealt with.
I have now asked for the detail bill but honestly, I would not know if the solicitor have pull the wool over me. None the less my gut instint tells me that the solicitor is £££££ free with my money. I sack the first solicitor and between them were quick to get me to agree her fee which will be payable when I settle the cost.
I am so please that your explaination of the legal aid system has clarified some muddy water for me bec the Sol were very vague when I ask her about it. There were many times when I feel that things were not right yet was'nt given any direction from acting solicitor. I am so stressed about it. So much so I am getting anxiety attack.