The History of ‘No Win No Fee’ Solicitors
Anyone who is a fan of courtroom-based dramas on American television will have long been fascinated by the mix of business practice and law that makes up the legal system in the USA.
Indeed, the complex relationship between State Law and Federal Law and the many layers of officials, such as District Attorneys and Public Prosecutors, all add to the dramatic scenarios.
One of the biggest surprises about the American legal system is the amount of cases which end in 'deals', where an agreement is reached between the litigants before the trial ends and a judgement is allowed to be made.
For many years, the differences in how USA and UK courts operated were put down to the way in which legal teams were paid. In essence, someone might be far less likely to pursue a claim against a third party in a civil court if they were to be faced with a large bill for fees in the event of an unsuccessful outcome.
'Conditional agreements' were introduced into law for personal injury claims in the UK in 1995, with the aim of opening up legal redress to people who might otherwise not be able to afford court action against an individual, a business or an official body.
These changes meant that what is commonly called a 'No Win No Fee' contract became available, whereby a law firm could take a case on the basis that they would only take a fee if they achieved a successful judgement. This works in practice because the funds generated by the successful claims comfortably outweigh the costs involved in the unsuccessful ones.
The law was changed once more in 1999, to the effect that the fees of the winning side were paid by the losing party, rather than coming out of the 'compensation' that the successful claimant was awarded. This is the way the law currently stands, but there are potential changes ahead in 2013.
Many insurance companies are unhappy with the current set-up because they feel the arrangements mean that too many speculative cases, with little grounds for success, are taken on as 'no win no fee' actions.
If you would like to find out more information about the current situation or think that you might benefit from talking to someone about a possible claim, click here for details regarding no win no fee solicitors.