The High Court has given judgment for a firm of solicitors seeking unpaid fees from a former client.

In doing so the Court has for the first time defined one of the Law Society’s standard CFA terms, which provided that the solicitors were entitled to terminate the CFA (and seek immediate payment of fees to date) where the client had rejected the firm’s opinion “about making a settlement.” The Court found that the term included the situation where the firm’s advice was that their client should make an offer, and rejected the argument that the clause was limited to advice about whether to accept offers made by the client’s opponent.

Acting for the firm throughout, Alex Young obtained summary judgment on the issue last summer and that judgment has now been upheld by the High Court on appeal. The case is likely to be of interest to any firm of solicitors which acts for clients on conditional fee agreements and has attracted substantial commentary on solicitors websites and litigation blogs.

Click here to read the judgment.

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