Seeking legal advice can be expensive. It’s time to budget effectively and learn how to take control of your legal expenses to help minimise financial stress.
Why is legal advice expensive in the UK?
It’s important to shop around when seeking legal advice as two lawyers could provide completely different quotes for the same service.
Legal costs are generally based on the experience and skill that is required from the lawyer. They may have varying charging methods according to the service, too.
For instance, they may charge you a fixed fee for writing a will or charge an hourly rate for a probate service. Alternatively, ‘no win no fee’ claims are particularly popular with customers, as the legal costs will be deducted from the compensation amount you are rewarded if you win a claim.
How can you effectively budget to afford legal consulting or hire a lawyer?
There are ways for you to get legal support if you need advice but can’t afford it. For free or cheaper help, take a look at the following solutions:
Depending on the severity of your case, you may be eligible for legal aid. This will help pay for some of your legal costs, or even the entire amount.
You could qualify for legal aid if:
- You’re going to become homeless
- You need family mediation
- You or your child are at risk of domestic violence
- You’ve been accused of a crime and could go to prison
- You’re being discriminated against
- You’re taking a case to court under the Human Rights Act
For civil cases, you can check if you’re eligible for legal aid. Or, if your case is criminal, you can ask your solicitor about legal aid, in which the amount you receive will be based on your income.
Take out a loan
To help ease the financial pressures of your legal expenses, you could consider taking out a bad credit loan.
However, you must be able to make the monthly repayments on your loan once you’ve used it to pay for your upfront costs. If you find yourself struggling to repay your loan, you can seek help from Citizens Advice.
Get free help
There are several charities and volunteer lawyers who can offer assistance if you’re struggling to pay for your own solicitor.
You can seek advice from a trained legal adviser at a law centre, which covers problems with benefits, community care, discrimination, housing, employment, and family.
Membership or insurance
If you’re part of the trade union, you might receive free legal help. Or there are various insurance or credit card incentives that offer help with your legal expenses if you’re signed up for a reward program, for example.