Can I change solicitor if I've started an abuse claim?
You can move your legal case to a different solicitor at any time without penalty. There are a few things you will need to be aware of however
Legal action relating to abuse can be very complex and must be dealt with sensitively and respectfully. It can often be very difficult for those that have experienced abuse to discuss their experiences and the prospect of a court case can be very distressing.
As this is an ever developing area of law, it is essential that anyone pursuing an abuse related claim works with a law firm with the appropriate specialisation.
Many people are not aware that they have the right to change their solicitor during a case. A client does not have to stay with their original choice of solicitor or the solicitors chosen or recommended by their insurance company.
Even if the legal process is significantly progressed with a firm, clients are under no legal or moral obligation to continue the relationship and are at liberty to change firms at any time.
It may be of concern that changing solicitors could hinder proceedings or affect the chance of a successful outcome. In fact changing solicitors mid case is fairly common and is often the preferable option in getting the best possible outcome.
There are many possible reasons for wanting to change solicitors:
- It may become clear that your chosen solicitor lacks proficiency, understanding or capability in the area of law applicable to your case. You may have lost the trust and belief in your solicitor that is essential to a successful case.
- Some people feel that they are treated not as a person but as a number by their solicitor. This can be very hurtful, especially when dealing with sensitive cases.
- Some people find that their solicitor is not spending enough time discussing the case with them and feel overwhelmed by legal jargon.
- Solicitors are busy people who often represent a number of clients simultaneously. Sometimes this can lead to the solicitor failing to dedicate enough time to an individual case and communication can be infrequent and unsatisfactory.
No matter what the reasoning, if you feel that you could be receiving a better service elsewhere you are perfectly entitled to appoint another solicitor of your choice.
In many cases you will not have to pay anything to your previous solicitor if you change firms mid-process. The new solicitor you select will merely send them a form and agree to recover any costs they may have incurred.
People with legal expenses insurance may have been told incorrectly by their insurance company that they cannot choose or change solicitor. However, your right to do so is enshrined in Regulation 6 of the Insurance Companies (LEI) Regulations 1990 which states that:
"Where under a legal expenses insurance contract recourse is had to a lawyer (or other person having such qualifications as may be necessary) to defend, represent or serve the interests of the insured in any inquiry or proceedings, the insured shall be free to choose that lawyer (or other person)."
If you are contemplating changing legal representation then Quittance may be able to help you. Our panel of solicitors have a wealth of experience representing clients in a broad range of legal areas. A solicitor with the relevant experience would be happy speak to you without obligation and advise you of your options.
How can Quittance help?
If you would like to arrange a free no obligation discussion call us on 0800 612 7456 or complete our online form and we will call you back at a time that suits you.