Clients are asked to arrange appointments by contacting our office and scheduling a time to ensure that a solicitor or clerk is available to adequately attend to their needs, with some advance notice of what the matter is likely to involve.
We retain files for a period of 7 years after which time they are destroyed. This does not apply to important documents such as wills, powers of attorney, titles, orders, deeds of agreement and anything specifically requested by the client to be deposited into security for the client free of charge. Retrieval of these documents will require clients to sufficiently identify themselves and sign for release.
All communications between clients and our staff members are confidential. We are not legally able to release information in relation to your matter without your authorisation.
The Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Act 2014 requires us to disclose information regarding our accounts and our Costs and Disbursements to our clients. We perform fixed fee work, though where this is not possible we adopt the fees as set out in the statutory scales of fees.
We will charge you at cost for any expense we incur on your behalf. These expenses may, for example, include filing fees, registration fees, barrister’s and expert’s fees, travel expenses, stamp duty, photocopying fees, company searches, document conversion, and title searches.
A client who engages or instructs us to perform work on their behalf will be liable to pay our accounts. If we are instructed to perform work on behalf of a company, the directors of the company will be liable to pay our accounts
We may charge interest on accounts which are unpaid for 30 days at a rate of 2 per cent higher than the cash rate target, as fixed by the Reserve Bank of Australia, as at the date of the invoice. If our accounts are not paid within this time frame we may cease working on a file until our account has been paid. We may also hold a lien over the file as security for unpaid accounts. This means that we will not release a file to a client, another solicitor or any other person until our account has been paid.
Verification of Identity
In line with recent requirements involving Verification of Identity, related to land transactions, clients may be required to obtain independent identify verification in order for us to act.
We operate a trust account subject to annual audit and spot inspection by representatives of the Law Institute of Victoria. If we receive money on your behalf we will deposit the money into our trust account.
Should we receive money into our trust account on your behalf you may authorize us to withdraw from that money any sums owing for our legal costs and disbursements. We will give you written notice prior to costs withdrawals.
You have the right to revoke your authority by giving seven (7) days notice in writing, but the law practice may still withdraw money held on your behalf for legal costs accrued up to the expiry of the notice period for costs accrued when ever billed.
If we receive money to be paid to a third party we will forward that money to the third party unless you instruct us to do otherwise.
Termination of Retainer
You may end our engagement by written notice at any time. If you do this, you must pay our legal costs up until that time.
Circumstances may arise (such as a conflict of interest) which make it impossible for us to continue to act for you. If this happens, we will contact you immediately.
If you do not pay our account or if you fail to pay money in advance if it is requested, we may stop work until we are paid. If the account continues to remain unpaid we may cease to act for you.
If we cease to act for you:
- We will not incur any liability as a result;
- We will remove our name from the court record in any court proceedings;
- You will receive a final account which will include all outstanding legal costs;
- You must pay our legal costs up until the date when we cease to act;
- We retain the right to keep your documents until we are paid.
We are regulated by Victorian Lawyers RPA Pty Ltd. If you have any concern or problem with the service we provide you should contact the personal handling your file at our office. you also have the right to make a complaint to Victorian Lawyers RPA Pty Ltd at 470 Bourke Street, Melbourne.