A study based on interviews with 40 recent purchasers of legal services found that consumers feel ‘let down’ when they find there are ‘hidden charges’ for work, such as additional searches.
The interviews showed that consumers had only a limited knowledge of the legal market, and word of mouth was a key factor in finding a solicitor. Shopping around and comparing prices was ‘very rare’. Consumers felt that if a firm had ‘solicitor’ in its name, this indicated a reliable provider.
The consumers questioned said it should be ‘as standard’ for a solicitor to offer clear, easy to understand charges. They said they valued a solicitor who remembers their name.
Paul Halstead, our Managing Partner noted the results of the research and commented: " Smith Sutcliffe follow the recommendations of both the Law Society and The Solicitors Regulation Authority with regard to charging for our work. We will always give clients a written and clear indication of the likely cost of their work and on long running matters will update this every six months as a minimum. Sometimes issues arise which were not forseen when the job started but we will always advise our client about this, and advise on the likely additional cost "
The Smith Sutcliffe Team pride themselves on having a strong relationship with our clients - some of our staff will have been in contact with the same clients for over 30 years.