Court of Protection
CORONAVIRUS / COVID-19: We are able to import files electronically to enable our Legal Costs team to carry out work remotely. Please contact Esmer Aljkanovic for further information.
Our team of knowledgeable Costs Lawyers and Draftsmen have extensive experience in carrying out Court of Protection work for Solicitors across country, including the preparation of both short form bills and detailed bills of costs in respect of the appointment of a Deputy and general management work. Our services extend to:
- Appointment of Deputy Costs
- General Management Costs
- Sale of Property/Statutory Wills Costs
We have a thorough understanding of the assessment requirements of the Senior Courts Costs Office and all bills are prepared with a view to maximising costs recovery.
General Management Costs
General management costs incurred by a Property and Affairs Deputy are assessed on an annual basis. The general management period is set by the original Court Order appointing the Professional Deputy.
In order to assess general management costs, the Senior Courts Costs Office requires the preparation and submission of a 3-column bill. Our legal experts routinely prepare such bills in Court of Protection matters for clients nationwide.
Once the bill has been finalised, it will need to be submitted to the Senior Courts Costs Office Court of Protection department along with the relevant request and the file of papers. A Costs Officer or Costs Judge will then proceed to conduct a Detailed Assessment of the bill, calculating and noting the figures for the Professional Deputy to approve. Once the figures have been agreed/approved, a Final Costs Certificate will need to be completed and submitted to the Court for sealing. Upon receipt of the sealed Final Costs Certificate, the balance of legal costs due to the Professional Deputy will be deducted from the Protected Person’s funds.
Maximising General Management Costs
In October 2015, the Office of the Public Guardian and the Senior Courts Costs Office jointly published guidance on the approach they would take in assessing the costs of Professional Deputies.
Our team of legal costs experts refer to this guidance when preparing bills for general management costs and proactively seek to maximise costs recovery. However, there are also measures that can be taken by Solicitors themselves to ensure the maximum possible recovery on annual management bills. These include:
- Avoiding engaging in (or at the very least minimising) inter-fee earner discussions in respect of P’s affairs. These costs will not be recoverable at a Senior Courts Costs Office assessment of a general management bill.
- Clearly and accurately detailing the nature of the work undertaken and the time engaged in each element of the management work carried out.
- Providing a narrative in cases that are novel, complex or fall outside the ordinary expectations of general management matters.
What We Can Offer You
Court of Protection costs are a niche area of legal costs that can be both complex and time consuming to deal with.
Our team of legal costs experts have in-depth knowledge and extensive experience of Court of Protection costs. Bills are prepared with accuracy and attention to detail in order to stand up to scrutiny at Detailed Assessment and with a swift turnaround to ensure minimum disruption to cash flow.
Whether you require a short form bill or a detailed annual management bill, our team of legal costs experts will be happy to assist.
All initial enquiries are completely free of charge, so please do not hesitate to call us. We will provide you with a price quotation and a choice of funding methods so get in touch today to speak to one of our legal costs experts.