Terms of Business
In accordance with the SRA requirements on transparency in price and service, we publish the following information in respect of our work relating to the provisions of immigration services to members of the public.
Nothing on this page or our website binds us to offer you a service at a particular price, and this page simple provides a guide to the rates that we would wish to charge. Each case needs to be assessed individually, and the ultimate fees you will be required to pay will depend on a number of factors, such as the complexity of the case, the volume of documents/evidence, the urgency of the matter, the legal issues in the case etc. We will always tell you our charges before we start any work, so that you can decide what work you do and do not want us to do.
In calculating the costs you must also be open and transparent with us to enable us to accurately calculate our fees and the likely costs of your case. If at a later stage we discover a material fact which has increased the costs of the services provided to you, we reserve the right to cease working on a case until a reasonable fee (reflecting the increased work etc) has been paid.
Terms we use
We use the following terms when talking about our costs:
Profit costs: – the money that we charge which covers not just profit to the firm, but also the costs of running the firm, such a staff salaries, building costs etc.
Disbursements:- These are the additional costs which are not normally within our quotes unless specifically identified. These can be court fees, immigration application fees, interpreter fees, translation fees, copying costs, travel costs etc.
Advocate fees:- These are the fees charged by an advocate (normally a barrister) to provide representation (advocacy) or drafting of legal documents in addition to the costs we charge. These are sometimes referred to as counsel’s fees.
Our fees do not attract VAT, however there may be disbursements that may attract VAT that is payable by you. VAT is currently charged at 20%.
We charge the following hourly rates on average:
Grade A Solicitors, those solicitors with over 8 years’ experience – £350
Grade B Solicitors, those solicitors with between 8 and 4 years’ experience – £255
Grade C fee earner those who are newly qualified up to four years’ experience and or have equivalent experience – £165
Grade D fee earners those who are not qualified as solicitors – £100
Being charged at an hourly rate can be cheaper than a fixed fee if your case is simple, but if it is complex the costs may be more.
We often charge a fixed fee for immigration work ranging from £700 for the simplest immigration applications through to £7,000 for more complex applications, per person. This means that you will pay a known amount for your case. If, however unexpected issues arise on the case, for example
matters that you failed to inform us about or the immigration authorities raise complex issues, then we may not be able to continue assisting you on a fixed fee basis or we will need to increase the fixed fee rate.
In respect to the following services:
• Applications for naturalisation or registration under the British Nationality Act 1981
• Applications on behalf of European Economic Area (EEA) nationals and their family members under the applicable EEA Regulations or Immigration Rules, including applications for permanent residence, residence cards, and registration certificates
• Applications under the Immigration Rules, including:
o student and work experience visas
o visit visas (for tourism, or visiting friends / family)
o spouse and partners applications, including fiancé(e)s or proposed civil partners
o applications for work, business or study under the Points-Based System;
o dependent relative and family reunion applications
o ancestry visas
o other categories, such as applications on the basis of long residence
We provide the following information:
Fees may depend on the experience of the lawyer/solicitor who conducts your case (see above). We often offer a fixed fee for the work we carry out, and this is based upon our best estimate of the time an average application takes. By their very nature most applications are not average; they are
either more complex or less complex. As such, our fees do vary.
As an example, a grade D fee earner’s hourly rate for drafting a student visa, given that this type of work takes between 5-15 hours to complete, would charge on average costs between £500 and £1,500. For a fixed fee case we would typically charge between £500 to £1,500 for this type of case.
We would separately charge you for any other disbursements (eg application fees), advocate’s fees etc incurred, which may incur VAT. The fees in your case will be set out in simple language in our initial client care letter, explaining the costs applicable to your particular case. Once the fees have
been explained, we will ask you to pay us on account for your case (see below).
Before we start any work for you will expect payment of the fixed fee, disbursements and advocates costs, or a payment on account for hourly rate costs covering the estimated costs in the matter.
The exact number of hours it will take to work on your case depends on the particular circumstances
of your case. Such as:
• the amount of supporting evidence that we need to consider;
• the cost of an interpreter;
• whether you are applying with other dependants;
• other complications in the case, such as a SIAC matter; etc.
If you are able to provide sufficient evidence at our first meeting and clearly meet the applicable Immigration Rules, the cost is likely to be at the lower end of our price ranges.
What Services Are Included
The work will involve:
• discussing your circumstances in detail and confirming whether this is the most appropriate application for you to make and what other options may be available to you;
• giving you advice about the requirements of the Immigration Rules and whether you meet the criteria in those Rules;
• if you do not fulfil certain criteria then explaining to you whether this can be overcome and how;
• considering the supporting evidence you have provided;
• helping you obtain further evidence (such as medical records, bank statements etc), including taking statements from any witnesses;
• preparing your application and submitting it on your behalf;
• attendance at a Home Office interview (such attendance will increase the costs you pay);
• giving you advice about the outcome of the application and any further steps you need to take; etc.
The amount of hours worked on a case depends on the number of documents; whether they need to be translated; their nature; whether anything is missing and how long it will take to obtain the missing documents.
Disbursements (not included in costs set out above)
Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, which may attract VAT, such as visa fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.
• Interpreters’ fees are charged by external companies, typically those fees are somewhere in the region of £20 – £45 per hour for attendance, £15-£25 per hour for travel and waiting time.
• Translation of documents will usually be charged at rates dependent on the number of pages or number of works, and the complexity of the document eg complex local court documents etc. We will normally obtain a quote from the translation company and discuss it with you in advance.
• Independent expert reports eg medical experts, country experts, accountant reports etc. Such fees are charged by external companies providing expert services, and the rates will be discussed with you at the time and when they are known. Rates may differ depending on the complexity of your individual case.
• If your application requires a considerable amount of copying of documentation and/or certification of documents, there will be a cost involved in this. We typically charge 10 pence per page for copying a large number of documents over 300 pages and/or for smaller quantities of difficult to copy documents such as colour pages or extra-large documents.
• If there is a Home Office interview and we do attend with you, there will be additional disbursements incurred by you in respect of our mileage/travel expenses.
The costs quoted here do not include:
• Any Home Office fees for making the application. You will pay this to the Home Office directly as part of the application process.
• Any NHS surcharge applied by the UK Government with your application.
• Where the Home Office refuse your application, advice and assistance in relation to any appeal or review or challenge to the delay caused by the Home Office, including any appeal court fees.
How long will my application take?
We cannot guarantee how long the Home Office or immigration authorities will take to process your application.
See the current Home Office processing times.
We will normally be able to submit an application as soon as you have provided all the documentation necessary, but we will let you know at the earliest opportunity if it is likely to take longer than expected.
Please note the anticipated number of hours and fees indicated at the outset are an estimate, based on the factors set out above. All applications are likely to vary and of course, we can give you a more accurate time estimate once we have more information about your specific case.