A partial conditional fee agreement (PCFA) is a legal contract where the lawyer`s fee is contingent on the outcome of the lawsuit. In other words, the lawyer only gets paid if the client wins the case. However, the client is still responsible for paying some of the legal fees, even if they lose the case.
PCFAs are often used for personal injury cases and other litigation matters where the client cannot afford to pay legal fees upfront. They provide an alternative to traditional billing methods, such as hourly rates, which can be expensive and prohibitive for many clients.
Under a PCFA, the lawyer and client agree on a reduced fee upfront, which is usually a percentage of the total legal fees. If the client wins, the lawyer receives a higher fee, which includes the reduced fee and a success fee. The success fee is usually a percentage of the damages awarded to the client.
If the client loses the case, they are still responsible for paying the reduced fee, as well as any other legal fees that were incurred during the litigation. Depending on the terms of the PCFA, the client may also be required to pay the success fee if the case was lost due to their negligence or failure to comply with the lawyer`s advice.
It`s important to note that PCFAs are subject to regulation by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) in the UK. The SRA requires lawyers to provide clients with clear, transparent information about their fees and the potential outcomes of their case.
In summary, a partial conditional fee agreement can be an attractive option for clients who cannot afford to pay legal fees upfront. However, it`s important to carefully review the terms of the agreement and discuss any concerns with your lawyer before signing.