Previously referred to as “no win no fee” or CFA, a Conditional Fee Agreement is a written agreement whereby legal fees and expenses only become payable in certain circumstances. Your APIL accredited lawyer will explain to you what those circumstances are as they will depend on the type of agreement entered into.
The most common type is where legal fees only become payable if the case is won. In those circumstances you will have to pay your lawyer’s fees and in addition there is usually a success fee payable on top. This success fee reflects the risk that the lawyer has incurred as a result of only being paid if the case is successful. You should in most cases be able to recover your lawyer’s fees from the other side; however since April 2013 you will not be able to claim back the success fee from the losing party. This will be taken from your compensation if your case is successful.
You should always agree in advance with your lawyer what the percentage deduction from your compensation will be before you proceed with your claim. The percentage agreed should not exceed 25 percent of your compensation, excluding those calculated to pay for your future needs.