In what circumstances were you able to obtain a pro bono cost order? Assisting a retired lady who was facing the prospect of having to sell her home to meet an obligation for which she was being sued. The claim was being brought by the executors of her late uncle’s estate; they had assumed that the estate was worth much more than it actually turned out to be and had as a result gifted her a house. They were suing their solicitors for negligence but the solicitors required them to claim the value of the excess distribution, to mitigate loss (Webster & Spain v K&L Gates & Sally Dutton).
How did you hear about pro bono cost orders? Via the Bar Pro Bono Unit.
How easy was the process? “The judge was all too happy to exercise his jurisdiction to make a pro bono costs order, and in fact granted an order for detailed assessment if the amount could not be agreed. I then negotiated with the paying party on behalf of the Access to Justice Foundation, whilst keeping them informed about what I felt could be claimed, and what was a reasonable offer.”
How much money did you raise from the pro bono cost order? Just under £20,000. This also included some work by the solicitor who referred the matter to the unit and remained involved in the case.
The Access to Justice Foundation, PO Box 64162, London WC2A 9AN. DX 234 London Chancery Lane. The Access to Justice Foundation is a company limited by guarantee (No. 6714178) and a registered charity (No. 1126147). Registered office: The National Pro Bono Centre, 48 Chancery Lane, London WC2A 1JF.
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