What Is A Conditional Fee Agreement And What Does It Cover?
By Danielle Jordan. Last Updated 4th April 2023. Welcome to our guide, which aims to explore the question: what is a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA)? We understand how overwhelming it can be when you’re in an accident that causes you harm. It can be especially frustrating when the accident resulted in injuries from someone breaching their duty of care to you.
How Does A Conditional Fee Agreement Work?
If you’ve experienced this and want to make a claim and seek legal representation without paying upfront solicitor fees, our guide could help. We’ll look at how a CFA might benefit you in regards to funding the services of a solicitor.
Whether you’ve been in an accident at work, suffered a slip, trip or fall in a public place or been in a road traffic accident, if you were owed a duty of care and someone else caused you injury, you may have grounds to seek compensation.
Additionally, our guide will look at the compensation you could be entitled to and how a solicitor may value your claim. For instance, we look at the evidence you may need to obtain to support your claim.
However, we understand that it’s a complex topic, so if you have any questions after reading, our advisors can help. They’re available 24/7 to provide you with free legal advice and answer any questions you may have.
Get in touch using the details below:
- Call us on 0800 073 8804
- Speak to an advisor at your earliest convenience using the live chat feature below
- Fill out the contact form to request a callback at a time best for you
Select A Section
- A Guide To What Conditional Fee Agreements Are
- What Is A Conditional Fee Agreement?
- How Do Conditional Fee Agreements Work?
- Are Conditional Fee Agreements Free?
- What Changes Have Been Made To No Win No Fee Claims?
- Personal Injury Compensation Claims Calculator
- Conditional Fee Arrangement – Am I Eligible?
- Essential References
A Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) is often used as an option as a way of funding the services of a solicitor for a personal injury claim. A less formal term for it is a No Win No Fee agreement.
A CFA is a way of getting access to the services of a solicitor without paying an upfront fee and regardless of your financial standing. When you’re seeking compensation after suffering harm in an incident caused by someone else’s negligence you may want to have a solicitor represent your case. Personal injuries can be caused by;
- Accident at work
- Road traffic accident
- Nursery or school accident
- Public place accident
- Care home accident
As long as your claim meets the three requirements, you may have grounds to seek compensation. Negligence can be proven if you were owed a duty of care, someone breached their duty and, as a result, caused you harm.
Below are a few examples of how a breach of duty could cause harm:
- Suffering stress at work due to your employer failing to take your reports of discrimination seriously and act.
- Suffering a severe back injury after being involved in a motorcycle accident due to someone driving dangerously.
- A child experiencing a minor head injury in a fall after the nursery failed to attend to slip hazard they’d been made aware of a considerable amount of time beforehand.
We understand that every accident is unique, and some may be more complex than others. However, our expert advisors can help you understand if negligence has occurred.
If they find you hold a valid claim, they could connect you with one of our solicitors to represent you under a CFA.
No matter what your query is, you can call us at any time on the number above.
What is a Conditiional Fee Agreement? A Conditional Fee Agreement or No Win No Fee agreement is between a claimant and a legal representative. They are often used by those who want to avoid upfront or ongoing solicitor or lawyer fees. They are also used by those who do not have the funds to pay a solicitor by the hour.
However, the way they work changed in 2012 as per the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO). The Act stopped solicitors from recovering success fees from defendants. Instead, they were to take a success fee from claimants’ compensation in successful claims.
If you choose to pursue your claim under a CFA, you may be offered a consultation with the solicitor appointed to your case. This provides you with a chance to discuss your claim in more detail, including how the accident happened and what the injuries you sustained are.
Furthermore, it allows the solicitor to look at any evidence you’ve obtained in support of your claim. They may also carry out an assessment to determine the chance your claim has of succeeding.
Most importantly, they can explain the different costs your claim may incur and what is covered under the CFA. The solicitor fees, such as the percentage of the success fee, will be agreed upon between you and your solicitor before you enter into the written agreement.
A CFA may be offered by a solicitor if they feel the case will conclude in the client’s favour. If the case is successful, you’ll pay a legally capped success fee that your solicitor deducts from the compensation. However, if it’s unsuccessful, you won’t be asked to pay the success fee.
Furthermore, before your solicitor takes on your claim, they may carry out an assessment on how likely it is to succeed.
The reason being that if it fails, the defendant may ask you to pay certain legal costs. However, a solicitor can assess the chance of this happening and advise on insurance you can take to cover these costs.
For more information, get in touch with our advisors using the number above. An advisor can provide further insight into your question: what is a Conditional Fee Agreement, and how does it work?
CFAs can be beneficial for those apprehensive about seeking legal representation due to the costs normally associated.
For instance, you can avoid upfront solicitor costs or solicitor costs that may incur during the course of your claim. Additionally, you won’t be asked to pay solicitor fees if the claim fails.
However, there may be other costs that your solicitor will inform you of before making your claim.
The following sections will look into this in more detail. Alternatively, you can get in touch with our advisors for further details.
LASPO introduced changes to No Win No Fee agreements in 2012. Originally, the other side would’ve had to pay the claimant’s solicitor’s success fee in the event of a successful claim.
However, the changes made meant solicitors could no longer recover success fees from the defendant. Instead, the legislation introduced a success fee that claimants would pay out of their total compensation package. This was a way to reimburse solicitors for their time spent on the case.
Furthermore, the Conditional Fee Agreements Order 2013 established a cap on the percentage that solicitors can charge their claimants. This means they cannot charge more than is stated in this Act.
There are often two parts to your personal injury compensation: general and special damages. General damages compensate you for the physical or psychological injuries you’ve suffered.
Furthermore, a document called the Judicial College Guidelines may be used alongside the medical evidence to help value your injuries. We have used the figures from this document to create the compensation table below. The purpose of the table is to provide a guide of what you may be able to claim for different injuries.
|Type of harm||Further comments||Example compensation award|
|Foot||(d) Severe fractures to both heels or feet that need extensive surgery.||£41,970 to £70,030|
|Foot||(g) Modest injuries such as a simple metatarsal fracture.||Up to £13,740|
|Knee||(a) Severe (ii) A fractured leg that affects the knee joint and causes ongoing pain.||£52,120 to £69,730|
|Ankle||(a) Very severe transmalleolar ankle fracture with soft-tissue damage.||£50,060 to £69,700|
|Ankle||(c) Modest injuries such as an undisplaced fracture.||£13,740 to £26,590|
|Hand injuries||(f) Severe finger fractures that result in deformity.||Up to £36,740|
|Skeletal injuries||(c) Fractures of Nose or Nasal Complex (i) Serious nose fracture that results in symptoms such as difficulty breathing and permanent airway damage.||£10,640 to £23,130|
|Skeletal injuries||(c) Fractures of Nose or Nasal Complex (iv) A simple fracture that's undisplaced and results in a full recovery.||£1,710 to
|Dermatitis||(a) Where both hands are affected by cracking and soreness. It may also result in a psychological impact as well.||£13,740 to £19,200|
As part of your personal injury claim, you have the right to seek compensation for monetary losses incurred due to your injuries. These might include some of the following:
- Lost earnings
- Cost of care
- Medical costs
- Travel expenses
However, you will need evidence to support your claim. For instance, your could use receipts, invoices and payslips.
Additionally, special damages are unique to each claim, and not every claim will include them. For that reason, a solicitor would work them out separately.
Now that we’ve covered what is a conditional fee agreement, you may like to know your eligibility to make a claim. As we discussed earlier, there are various situations in which you are owed a duty of care. It is when this duty of care is broken, and you suffer injuries as a result, that you might be eligible to claim compensation.
You will need evidence to support your claim. It needs to show that negligence caused your injuries.
Examples of evidence that could be helpful in personal injury claims includes:
- Accident footage. For example, from CCTV or a mobile phone.
- Medical records. In addition to your medical records, you might be asked to attend an independent medical exam to assess the extent of your injuries.
- Photographs of the accident scene. For example, if uneven paving caused you to suffer injuries in a slip, trip and fall, you can submit photographs of this.
One of the advantages of having a solicitor is that they can help you gather this evidence. If you decide to have the support of a No Win No Fee solicitor, they might offer their services under a Conditional Fee Agreement. In the UK, this is one way to have legal representation without paying upfront for your solicitor’s services. However, not all personal injury solicitors offer a conditional fee arrangement in the UK.
If you have any remaining queries around your question, ‘what is a conditional fee agreement?’ our advisors can help answer them. They can also assess the eligibility of your claim for free. If it seems like it could succeed, you could be connected to one of our No Win No Fee solicitors.
Contact Us Today
We expect that you may still have questions after reading our guide. Alternatively, you may be ready to put forward your claim. Either way, our advisors are available to help you.
So, why not get in touch on the details below?:
- Call us on 0800 073 8804
- Speak to an advisor at your earliest convenience using the live chat feature below
- Fill out the contact form to request a callback
- See our guide for more information on the steps you could take after you’ve been injured at work.
- Have you suffered harm due to the council breaching their duty of care? If so, our guide could help.
- Did you sustain a shoulder injury in an accident? If it was caused by someone who owed you a duty of care, our guide could help.
- Visit the government guide on getting compensation after an accident that caused you harm.
- See the NHS website for any medical advice.
- Find out about the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA).
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Written by Mitchell
Edited by Victorine