Costs and Our Services


Clarity

We aim to provide you with clear information about counsels' fees at all times. As standard, we arrange for a fixed written fee quotation per item of work required. Alternatively, hourly rates can be quoted or a budget agreed. Or you can propose what you consider to be an appropriate fee to counsel for the work required, and we will arrange for competent and appropriate counsel to carry out the work for that fee.

Predictability
We believe that counsel should agree fees in advance of work done if asked to do so. This practice, as well as providing certainty and transparency, protects the client against unforeseen changes in circumstances and provides assurance that counsel will remain committed to the client's cause at the agreed fee. We do not believe that it is acceptable for counsel to say:

"It is not possible to know, and therefore to state, the level of fees in advance due to the fact that circumstances often change in the course of a case".

We ensure that you are provided with fee quotations, not "fee estimates". Fees quoted to you by counsel through Brief Counsel Ltd will not be exceeded without prior agreement.

Does using your service affect how costs are assessed at taxation?
No. Our services are free for Irish solicitors, other professionals and their clients, so no extra costs arise for the purposes of taxation. However, we can see a time where parties against whom costs have been awarded will ask at taxation why Brief Counsel Ltd's services were not used by the winning party to obtain competitive written fee quotations from multiple barristers, before expensive brief fees and the like were racked up with one barrister alone.

Block Contracts
We encourage enquiries concerning block contract work. We are happy to consider reduced rates for volume work by counsel, or new or innovative fee structures that comply with professional rules and ethics. We always welcome new ideas and innovative proposals from solicitors and other professionals.

Credit control
We understand that you must be paid yourself before you are in a position to discharge counsels' fees. We aim to tie in with your billing requirements. We take a pragmatic and commercial view in relation to costs and are happy to tailor our service to meet your needs. However, solicitors and other professionals deemed to be persistent non-payers of counsels' fees may be refused services by Brief Counsel Ltd.

New Rules of Court concerning costs estimates
With effect from February 21, 2008, an amendment has been made to Order 99 rule 5 of the Rules of the Superior Courts 1986, whereby the Court at any stage of the proceedings may require the parties to produce to the court and exchange with one another estimates of the costs respectively incurred by them, for such period as the court may direct, and particularised in such manner as the court may direct.
Rules of the Superior Courts (Costs) 2008 (S.I. 2008/12)

With effect from October 1, 2008, an amendment has been made to Order 66 rule 1 of the Circuit Court Rules 2001, whereby the Court may require the production and exchange of estimates of costs, at any stage of the proceedings.
Circuit Court Rules (Costs) 2008 (S.I. 2008/353)

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