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barrister at court

  • brokeandexhausted
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11 Dec 07 #8836 by brokeandexhausted
Topic started by brokeandexhausted
Anyone got any idea what exactly a barrister would do at the FDR?
Is it better to have a barrister (as my sol suggests) or shd I just stick with my solicitor who knows me?
I feel a bit odd about the idea of meeting a total stranger on the court steps and then minutes later they will have my life - and those of my children - in their hands when we go in front of the judge.
Is that how it works or am I worrying unnecessarily and will the 1500 estimated cost be worth it? :S

  • Chound
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11 Dec 07 #8838 by Chound
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It is quite usual to have a Barrister at an FDR.
It is most probable that the other side will have one so I suggest that you do too.
The Barrister may well be able to save you more than his fee in negotiating a better deal for you.
Dont worry about Him not knowing anything about you...they deal with FDR's every day of the week for a living

  • OBEs 1 canoodly
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11 Dec 07 #8847 by OBEs 1 canoodly
Reply from OBEs 1 canoodly
Hi there,

Now Chound correct me if I am wrong but it is far more usual to save the Barrister until the Final Hearing. Either you are confused by the FDR or I am missing something here.

Broke and Exhausted: The FDR is the main first hearing after the first appointment and usually solicitors will sit in court and battle out an agreement between you running between rooms to meet up with each other with offers because at this stage the Judge wants to know you have at least come to some agreements between you. This is the point where the judge really does warn you that it is a very expensive do to take it to a Final Hearing. From my past experience it is possible to have a Barrister at FDR but really it is not worth the expense as solicitors are quite capable of dealing with it at this stage.

If an agreement can't be reached then I'm afraid it will go all the way to FH and at that point if you feel you cannot self rep (as many on here have done and have been very successful) then at that point your solicitor should advise you to take a Barrister as usually it goes far deeper than the solicitor can deal with on your behalf at this particular hearing.

£1500?? Is that plus VAT?? That is far too much to pay for FDR although I suppose it depends on how deep your case goes and where in UK you are living??

Let battle commence?? I hope not, for your sake, try, try, try to settle it at FDR its too expensive not to!!

OBEs 1 canoodly

  • maggie
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12 Dec 07 #8854 by maggie
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At my solicitor's insistence I had a barrister at FDR
I know now that this was because my solicitor was incapable of doing the FDR alone and needed the barrister - my solicitor was a spare part at my FDR - I paid for her to gain experience.
My barrister charged £600 for the FDR - a fixed rate agreed in advance.He spoke in staccato legalese impossible to understand. I would encourage anyone to try mediation at any stage of the negotiations to avoid the court route if at all possible.

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12 Dec 07 #8855 by maggie
Reply from maggie
Is Chound a barrister?

  • brokeandexhausted
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12 Dec 07 #8859 by brokeandexhausted
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We have had one court hearing - my x2b is on legal aid and had a solicitor and barrister but did not turn up himself citing ill health. There was lots of to-ing and fro-ing with X2b on phone. The judge then said he was concerned costs would spiral out of all proportion to the assets pot. Have tried a without prejudice offer as a start point for negotiations but no go. Am awaiting final valuation of his pension but it looks like it will be roughly similar to the equity in the house and other assets I hold. My initial instinct was to suggest he keep pension and I keep house etc but from the latest missive from him he wants all his pension plus more than the equity in the house to provide a home for him (he is renting from a Housing Assoc as he has disability and living on benefits). My solictor thinks his barrister is running the case.

x2b has been told he must turn up at FDR - medical reports say there is no reason he should not. My solicitor tells me cost of him representing me will be the same as a barrister.

Am very concerned about losing out - have contributed financially more than X2b and have kids - but do not want this to drag out. Solicitor seemed to think self repping was a bad plan. I do not want to end up with a worse deal because of a decision I make now. Only ended up in court because it took 8 months for him to produce form E and my solicitor advised we go for court option to prompt some action. Aaaaargh! This seems like such a waste of money. :(

  • gone1
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12 Dec 07 #8867 by gone1
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Hi Broken. Some firms do not litigate them selves but hire barristers to do the work for them. Dont pick this kind of firm as it will cost you a fortune. Sols are about 150 - 180 an hour while barristers charge by the day. Yr ex is legally aided and hence the barrister and sol.

There realy is no use for a barrister at an FDR. Solicitors can haggle just as well. But U have to have a barrister at FH for some reason that I dont understand.

You are right that often you do meet them on the steps and they hold yr life in there hands. Thats how it works. But some meet the client beforehand and have some chance to talk to you. Just take your sol with you. My ex had a sol and a barrister but it made no difference as I had a good sol and she was more than a match for her sol and barrister.

I wouldnt self rep as you will be eaten alive. I never got a word in edgeways when I self repped for my non mol case. She wipped the floor with me. It was nice seeing her get the treatment from my sol at 1st hearing. Both were women and it was like a cat fight. Chris.

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