Terms and Conditions

1. Introduction

(a) Corbett Le Quesne is a law firm based in Jersey, Channel Islands, and is a legal services provider specialising in Jersey family law. We are also able to advise in relation to certain aspects of English family law. Unless expressly stated in our Initial Advice Letter we do not advise on any issues governed by the law of any jurisdiction other than the Island of Jersey and certain matters governed by the law of England and Wales.

(b) These Terms and Conditions, together with our Initial Advice Letter, govern the basis on which we provide the Services to you.

(c) Where the terms set out in our Initial Advice Letter differ from these Terms and Conditions then the terms of the Initial Advice Letter will apply.

(d) These Terms and Conditions shall apply to all work provided by us to you in relation to the Services, including any work undertaken before your delivery to us of a signed copy of our Initial Advice Letter.

(e) A copy of these Terms and Conditions shall be:

(i) Sent to you together with our Initial Advice Letter.

(ii) Made available for inspection, on request, at our offices.

(iii) Available online at www.corbettlequesne.com.

(f) We reserve the right to revise these Terms and Conditions and the Rates without notice and without your prior consent.  In the event of such a revision we will notify you as soon as is reasonably practicable.  You shall be bound by any such revision as and when a copy of the revised Terms and Conditions becomes available for inspection on our website.

2. Definitions

In these Terms and Conditions (unless otherwise indicated) the following words and expressions shall have the following meanings:

(a) “Business Day”; all days save Saturdays, Sundays and Jersey Bank Holidays.

(b) “Business Hours”; those between 09.00 and 17.00 hours on any Business Day.

(c) “Client”, “you” or “yours”; any person or entity to whom we provide Services.  Client includes a person or entity’s heirs, successors, personal representatives or assigns.

(d) “Data Protection Legislation”; the data protection legislation in force in Jersey at the date of instruction.

(e) “Corbett Le Quesne”, “the Firm”, “we”, “our”, or “us”; Corbett Le Quesne.

(f) “Disbursements”; legal expenses incurred in the provision of the Services to you over and above our fees, for example, and non-exhaustively, Court fees, the fees of lawyers in other jurisdictions incurred in connection with a case or matter, document production charges, search fees, or expert costs.

(g) “Employees”; all members, consultants, employees, fee earners and agents of Corbett Le Quesne.

(h) “Rates”; the fee earners’ rates per hour and administrative charges (if any) set out in our Initial Advice Letter.

(i) “Services”; the provision of legal services.

3. Interpretation

Unless the context appears otherwise:

(a) Headings in these Terms and Conditions are inserted for convenience only and shall be ignored in construing these Terms and Conditions.

(b) Words denoting the singular shall include the plural and vice versa.

(c) References to statutes and/or statutory provisions shall be taken to refer to such statutes and/or statutory provisions respectively as replaced, amended, extended or consolidated.

(d) The expression ‘person’ shall be taken to include references to any individual, firm, company, partnership, corporation or any agency of it.

4. Fees and Disbursements

(a) We are committed to providing Services at a level of cost that is fair and proportionate in all the circumstances of the case.  We will be happy to discuss the basis upon which you will be charged for the Services at the outset of the matter.

(i) Services provided by Corbett Le Quesne will primarily be charged on the basis of the time spent on the matter in accordance with the Rates but may be revised up or down to take account of such factors as the complexity or importance of the matter, its value, urgency or novelty.

(ii) Time is recorded by reference to activities undertaken by a particular fee-earner on the basis of six minute units or multiples thereof.

(iii) Where appropriate, and agreed between you and us, certain discrete aspects of the Services may be charged on the basis of a fixed fee or scale of fees.

(iv) We shall, on request, be happy to provide an estimate of the fees likely to be charged for a particular matter or aspect of a matter.  Where an estimate is given such is an indication only and shall not be regarded as a fixed or agreed fee unless specifically confirmed by us in writing.

(b) The amount of work involved in any particular case or matter is often uncertain and difficult to predict.  To assist you in keeping track of the cost of  Services provided to you, we will:

(i) Be happy to discuss with you the level of fees and the basis of charging at the outset of our engagement.

(ii) Unless specifically agreed to the contrary we shall render interim invoices to you on a monthly basis.

(iii) On request we shall inform you as and when certain agreed levels of fees are reached and shall not proceed with the provision of any further Services unless and until authorised by you.

(c) The Rates applicable to each fee-earner are usually reviewed on an annual basis in January.  We will notify you in writing of any increase in our hourly rates.

(d) Disbursements will be added as they are incurred to the relevant interim or final invoice.  We charge 2.5 pence per sheet for copying or printing in monochrome and 10 pence per colour sheet.

(e) Depending on the nature of the Services provided, you may be liable to GST on our charges at the prevailing rate.

(f) We reserve the right to require a payment in advance of the provision of Services on account of likely fees and disbursements.

(g) Our invoices, whether interim or final, are payable within 14 days of presentation.  Should our invoices remain unpaid interest may be added at a rate of 6% per annum above the Bank of England Bank Rate.

(h) Should you have any queries regarding an invoice presented by us you should please contact us within 14 days in order to discuss your queries.

5. Costs

(a) In this context “Costs” means the total legal expenses of a party, including fees and disbursements.

(b) At the conclusion of your case or certain aspects of your case, in certain circumstances, you may be able to recover some of your costs from the other party/parties.

(i) Any costs order made by which you are able to recover your costs from another party is unlikely to result in full recovery of all your costs.

(ii) The recovery of any costs from another party is dependent on that party’s ability to pay.

(c) Similarly, in certain circumstances, you may be ordered to pay some or all of the costs of another party/parties.

(d) We will provide you with detailed advice as to costs orders at the relevant time.

(e) Whatever the outcome of the case and irrespective of any costs orders made you remain primarily responsible for the settlement of our invoices.

6. Legal Expenses Insurance

(a) You may benefit from a degree of legal expenses insurance as part of, or ancillary to, a household or motor insurance policy.

(b) You should check your insurance documentation and/or consult your insurance broker to determine whether or not you benefit from any legal expenses cover.

(c) Irrespective of any policy of insurance which you benefit from, you remain primarily responsible for the settlement of our invoices.

7. Client Monies

(a) Where we accept monies from you on account of our fees and/or disbursements, or where we receive monies from other parties for you, we shall hold that money in a separate client account. Such monies should be paid into the Corbett Le Quesne Client account, sort code 20-45-05, account number 63716201.

(b) In certain circumstances we may settle our fees and/or disbursements which have been invoiced to you out of the monies held by us for you in the client account.

(c) We shall always notify you in advance if we intend to use monies held by us for you in the client account for the settlement of our invoiced fees and/or disbursements.

(d) We shall not use monies held by us for you in the client account in settlement of any invoice about which you have raised a query unless and until that query is resolved.

(e) Interest shall be applied to monies held by us for you in the client account at the prevailing rate offered by our holding bank where appropriate.

(f) In circumstances where we are required to make a payment on your behalf (for example of settlement monies or a disbursement) we may require to be placed in cleared funds at least one day in advance of the date for payment.

(g) Our main clearing bank is Barclays.  We accept no liability as to the performance of Barclays or any other bank with whom we transact.

8. Concerns about our service

(a) Our aim is to provide a service of the very highest standard.  If for any reason you feel that we fall short of that standard then we want to hear from you.  In the first instance please raise any concerns you have directly with the fee-earner concerned or with another member of the Firm so that we can seek to address any issues with you.  If you wish you may discuss matters with the Firm’s Senior Partner.

(b) If you remain dissatisfied you may make a complaint to the Law Society of Jersey, P.O. Box 493, St. Helier, Jersey, JE4 5SZ, or e-mail: ceo@jerseylawsociety.je.

9. Termination

(a) You may cease to instruct us at any time by providing notice to us in writing.

(b) In the event of termination by you we shall be entitled to keep any papers, documents or monies held in our client account until such time as any and all of our outstanding invoices have been settled.

(c) We will continue to act for you on a particular matter unless and until:

(i) You do not provide us with the requisite due diligence material; and/or

(ii) It is no longer appropriate or in your best interest for us to continue to act for you; and/or

(iii) You cease or fail to provide us with clear or proper instructions; and/or

(iv) A position of conflict arises; and/or

(v) Our invoices are overdue for payment.

(d) If, for whatever reason, we can no longer act for you we will notify you in writing immediately it becomes apparent.

(e) In the event of termination by either you or us, you shall be responsible for our work in progress, fees and disbursements to the date of termination and for any costs of and incidental to any transfer of any matter to another firm or lawyer.

10. Non-exclusivity

We reserve the right to provide Services to any other person or entity at our discretion and in accordance with the Law Society Rules.

11. Conflicts

(a) We provide Services to a large number of clients.  Whilst every effort is made to avoid any conflict of interest arising it is possible that such a conflict of interest may arise.

(b) In the event that we become aware of, or are notified of, a potential conflict of interest we shall notify you immediately and, where possible, implement procedures to manage the conflict.

(c) We shall be under no obligation to notify you of the nature of any conflict in circumstances where to do so would place us in potential breach of our legal and/or professional obligations.

12. Limitation of liability

(a) We shall have in place at all times a policy of professional indemnity insurance with a reputable insurer which policy shall cover the actions of all persons working in or for Corbett Le Quesne.

(b) Your relationship with us is solely with Corbett Le Quesne.  No member, consultant or employee of the Firm shall have any personal liability to you arising out of the provision of the Services.

(c) In the event of any breach of any of our duties to you our liability is limited for any one matter in the following respects:

(i) You agree to make no claim against an individual member, consultant or employee;

(ii) Unless specifically agreed otherwise in writing, our maximum liability to you is limited to £5,000,000 (five million pounds Sterling);

(iii) We are not liable for indirect or consequential loss or loss of anticipated profit or other benefit;

(iv) If any third parties are also responsible for any of your losses or damage then the Firm’s liability to you shall be limited to its fair share irrespective of whether or not you are able to recover from such third parties; and

(v) You shall not be able to recover damages more than once in respect of the same fact, matter or circumstance.

(d) Any claim brought against Corbett Le Quesne by or on behalf of you may only be enforced against those assets or property which comprise assets or property of Corbett Le Quesne.

13. Communication

(a) We will communicate with you by way of letter, email, telephone or any combination of the above at the address or number last given to us by you in communication generally.

(b) Corbett Le Quesne operates primarily electronically.  As such we shall usually send all general correspondence and other documents, where possible, via email.  We do not guarantee that messages, documents or files sent by email are virus-free although we endeavour to ensure such.  We accept no liability or responsibility for any loss or damage, however caused, by any virus.

(c) We will, on request, provide you with hard copies of any documents sent to you via e-mail.

(d) Should you not wish us to communicate with you via any particular method, you should notify us accordingly.

(e) We reserve the right to record telephone calls.

14. Storage of client documents

(a) Corbett Le Quesne operates primarily on an electronic filing system although we will also use and keep hard copies of documents as and when appropriate.  We reserve the right, but have no obligation, to make electronic copies of all documents, correspondence, memoranda and notes which have been created in the course of the instruction and, save for original signed documents, we reserve the right to destroy hard copies and store the remainder for filing electronically.  

(b) After completion of any matter, we are entitled to retain all papers and documents, whether held in electronic form or hard copy, which have come into our possession or into existence in the course of our acting for you until all fees and disbursements have been settled in full.

(c) We will keep all documents, correspondence, memoranda and notes which have been created in the course of the instruction, whether held electronically or in hard copy, for such period as we consider appropriate.

(d) We are entitled to destroy any documents held by us, howsoever held, pursuant to any engagement terms from the date falling 11 years after the completion of our services.

(e) After the period of continued retention (whether in electronic form or otherwise) of such documents, correspondence, memoranda and notes (save for original signed documents), we have the right to destroy all such files, unless you have requested in writing to the contrary, at or prior to the conclusion of any matter in question.

(f) Should we need to retrieve files from storage, either in relation to new instructions to act for you (where the archived files are relevant) or where you have asked us to retrieve specific documents or papers, we reserve the right to charge for such services.

15. Website and intellectual property

(a) All correspondence, files and records and all information and data held by us on any computer system is the sole property of the Firm for our own use and you acknowledge that you have no right of access or control over such information.

(b) Our website (www.corbettlequesne.com) and all material contained in it, provides general information only.  None of its content constitutes legal or professional advice, and it should not be relied upon as such.  We do not accept responsibility for any loss which may arise from reliance on information contained in this website.

(c) We do not guarantee that documents or files within this website are virus- free.  As such we accept no liability or responsibility for any loss or damage, however caused, by any virus.  We strongly recommend that you use virus-checking software when using our website.

(d) We do not endorse any information contained in any external internet sites and the links on this website do not imply any association with the policies of the organisations responsible for such websites.  We are not responsible for the content or privacy policies of any external internet websites linked to this website. 

16. Data protection

Rights of data subjects; Office of the Information Commissioner

Individuals to whom we provide services have rights under data protection law.  You can find out more about Jersey’s data protection laws from the Office of the Information Commissioner (the “Commissioner”) and/or you can discuss this with us.  Corbett Le Quesne is registered with the Commissioner as a holder of personal data in relation to our contacts and clients.  The person ultimately responsible for managing data processed by Corbett Le Quesne is: Advocate Barbara Corbett.  If you have a complaint about the way we manage personal data you can complain to us or you can lodge a formal complaint with the Commissioner.  Any issues should be raised, in the first instance, with your usual Corbett Le Quesne contact.  

Information processing

We will hold and process personal information in connection with the provision of legal services including, specifically, the provision of family law advice and representation (including proceedings in respect of children).  Such information may include sensitive information about individuals (known as special category data, as defined in Jersey’s data protection law), which may include information about:

(i) Physical and/or mental health; 

(ii) Racial or ethnic origin; political and religious beliefs;

(iii) Genetic or biometric data;

(iv) A person’s sex life and/or sexual orientation;

(v) Criminal records and/or alleged criminal activity.

We will rely on the Client to provide us with information that is accurate and up-to-date and to notify us of any relevant changes to the data provided to us.

We will keep this information private and will not disclose it to third parties, save as follows:

(i) In accordance with any statutory obligation or court order;

(ii) As authorised by you in order to progress your case in accordance with your overarching instructions, including:

a. during the normal course of correspondence and negotiations with other parties;

b. where we are working with other advisers on your behalf;

c. by way of exchange/disclosure of pleadings, documents and witness statements during the course of conciliation, court or similar proceedings; 

(iii) In order to comply with any reasonable request from or requirement in relation to a government or regulatory body (such as the Income Tax and Social Security Departments or the Law Society);

(iv) In order to ensure the efficient running of Corbett Le Quesne’s business, including but not limited to in relation to the management of your case (e.g. by disclosing information to Corbett Le Quesne’s accountant, IT and data systems providers, archiving service providers and, where necessary in the context of your case, other external consultants and service providers together “Service Providers”);

(v) Where the information is already in the public domain;

(vi) It is necessary or desirable to disclose the same to defend any charges against us.

We will also process such information for internal marketing purposes and reserve the right to use it for marketing and promoting other services offered, unless requested in writing not to do so.  You can exercise this right at any time by contacting us.  (Given the nature of our work, any data contained in published information would normally be anonymised unless an individual had given express permission for disclosure of appropriate information in this context.)

Basis of processing

Corbett Le Quesne will hold and process this personal information in order to progress the Client’s case, on the basis of your instructions to us, and as set out above in relation to marketing and promotion.  We will interpret and act upon your instructions as we consider appropriate on the basis of our experience and expertise. In doing this, Corbett Le Quesne will process personal data in order to perform the contract with the Client (or with a view to entering into such a contract), which is a contract for the provision of legal advice and/or representation and/or, in limited cases, a contract for the provision of other professional services (such as the provision of advice or guidance on commercial matters).  Where appropriate, special category data will also be processed where it is necessary for the purposes of legal proceedings.

Recipients and Transfer of data

We reserve the right to transfer Client personal data to relevant third parties/intermediaries, including Service Providers based in other jurisdictions or providing services, such as technology services, via other jurisdictions.  Our Service Providers are mainly Jersey based.  Those Service Providers may themselves use providers based in other jurisdictions. It is possible that through the work we do, with the assistance of Service Providers, personal data may be transferred to or via jurisdictions outside the EU/the EEA and which have not been formally assessed as providing “an adequate level of protection” under European data protection standards.  If you would like specific information including the identity of our Service Providers, please contact us.  Corbett Le Quesne reserves the right to change Service Providers at any time and without notice to the Client.

Please also see section 17 below regarding disclosure in the context of legal proceedings.

Access requests

The Client may at any time request access to information which we hold about the Client.  The Client acknowledges and agrees that we may discharge our obligation without providing copies of all or any personal data.

The Client may also ask us to correct data which the Client believes is inaccurate and may ask that information is erased (subject to any exemptions that may apply).    

Information about third parties

If the Client instructs us to provide advice in relation to a third party and provides us with personal information about that third party then, Corbett Le Quesne will have additional obligations in respect of the third party which are separate from Corbett Le Quesne’ obligations to the Client.  

No warranty of the security of information

Whilst we do our best to safeguard information we cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information.  Please note that email communications are not secure.  An internet-based system will be used for carrying out the Services, which is a UK based system.  Should you require more information about this do please let us know.   

Document retention

Some hard copy documents will be retained while a case is ongoing in addition to the electronic records.  When a file is closed any hard copy documentation will usually be scanned and the hard copy destroyed within 6 months of the end of our instructions.  Electronic data will be retained for 11 years (or such other period as may be specified by the Law Society) and that data will then be deleted. (It may not be possible to delete digital data permanently but we will take appropriate steps to put the data beyond effective recovery by us.)

Exercise of Rights and Complaints

If the Client wishes to exercise any rights under data protection law please contact Advocate Barbara Corbett. Any person affected by Corbett Le Quesne’s processing may complain to the Jersey Data Protection Authority c/o the Commissioner.

17. Disclosure of documents

(a) Parties to litigation often come under an obligation to the other parties to disclose, at the appropriate stage in the proceedings, all documents within their control (including video/audio recordings and electronically stored information) which are relevant to the proceedings.

(b) We will advise you in detail about the nature and extent of any discovery obligations at the appropriate time.

(c) You must keep safe all documents you have which are or may be relevant to your case so that we can review them in due course.  Failure to keep such documents safe may result in serious damage to your prospects of success in the case.

18. Marketing

(a) We reserve the right to use the anonymised details of a client and a brief outline of the nature of the matter in our marketing material.

(b) We will notify you in advance of our intention to use such information.

(c) We will not use any information about you or your case where you specifically request us not to do so unless such information is already in the public domain.

19. Client due diligence/anti-money laundering requirements

(a) We are required by law to obtain information and documentation to identify and verify your identity and the identity of certain persons connected to you, unless an exemption is available.

(b) If you do not provide us with such information and documentation, as and when required and in a form acceptable to us, we may without any liability terminate the engagement with you with immediate effect.

(c) The time at which such information and documentation is required, and the form in which it shall be delivered to us, shall be determined by us in our absolute discretion.

(d) If, as a result of compliance with anti-money laundering legislation, the Firm is obliged to do, or to refrain from doing, anything in relation to your matter, then the Firm shall not be liable for any consequences of so doing or not doing.

20. Tax Issues

We do not advise on any taxation issues relating to you or any matter in which we have been instructed.  In certain circumstances we may require to be provided with a copy of any tax advice you have received.

21. Force Majeure

We shall not be liable for any loss, damage or delay caused by any extraordinary event or circumstance beyond our control including, but not limited to, war, strike, riot, insurrection or act of God.

22. Partial invalidity

The invalidity, illegality or unenforceability of any provision or provisions of these Terms and Conditions shall not affect the validity or enforceability of any other provision of these Terms and Conditions, which shall remain in full force and effect.

23. Joint and several liability

Where the client is more than one person:

(a) Each person appoints the other person or persons to act as his agent to exercise full power and authority in connection with the Services on his behalf.

(b) The obligations of the Client in connection with the matter shall be joint and several.

(c) Where we communicate with one of the persons who comprise the Client such communication shall be deemed to be with all of the persons who comprise the Client and it shall be assumed that such person is authorised to give instructions to us on behalf of each person.

24. Liability to third parties

Save as expressly agreed in writing, we do not accept or assume any duties or liability to any person other than you and we therefore exclude, to the fullest extent permissible by law, any liability to third parties.

25. Jurisdiction

(a) The construction, validity and performance of these Terms and Conditions shall be governed by the law of the Island of Jersey.

(b) The courts of the Island of Jersey shall have exclusive jurisdiction in relation to any claim, dispute or difference concerning the Initial Advice Letter and any matters arising from it.

April 2018

 

 

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