Should I instruct a Solicitor or a Claims Management Company to deal with my claim?
We would always recommend that you use a Solicitor rather than a Claims Management Company (CMC), but we would say that, wouldn’t we? The reason we say this is not so that you instruct us to deal with your case, it is because there are genuine reasons to be wary of letting a Claims Management Company deal with it:
- A Solicitor must have insurance to cover you if the case goes wrong so you will always receive your compensation. A Claims Management Company does not have to have this insurance so if something goes wrong, you may not be insured;
- A Solicitor must be regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) which means a Solicitor must act for you within regulations, guidelines and a code of ethics. Essentially, this means the Solicitor must act in your best interests at all times. It also means that if something goes wrong with the case or you have a fall-out with the Solicitor, you can complain to the SRA or the Legal Ombudsman and the Solicitor must deal with this, again within set guidelines. A CMC does not have this regulatory framework or protections for you. All CMCs are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), but this is more business regulation than protection for clients;
- The Solicitor you instruct will deal with your claim so you can establish a relationship with that Solicitor to ensure your claim is progressed in accordance with your wishes and instructions. A CMC may simply pass your claim to one of their panel Solicitors without your knowledge or approval. The Solicitor the CMC instructs may not be your choice, you may not know them and you may not want to deal with them, but if you’ve instructed the CMC, it may be difficult to move Solicitors;
- A Solicitor, and anyone employed by that Solicitor, must work to a certain standard and be qualified, experienced and competent to deal with your case. They must maintain an up-to-date knowledge of the law and undergo ongoing training each year. A CMC might only employ unqualified, inexperienced staff who are not competent to deal with your claim, especially if there are complex issues, and if something goes wrong, you do not have the same protections;
- A Solicitor can offer a range of funding arrangements so that you can choose the one that suits you. A Solicitor will be limited in the fees charged or percentage of compensation to be used to cover legal fees. However, a CMC is likely to use the funding arrangement that suits them and they are not limited in the percentage of compensation they can deduct.
A Solicitor offers you financial and legal protections, a guarantee of a certain standard of work and a regulatory framework that ensures you, as the client, is protected if things go wrong. Essentially, a Solicitor can offer you the peace of mind that your claim will be dealt with properly and will act in your best interests at all times.
A Claims Management Company can offer a service to you and can assist you with your claim, but they cannot offer the guarantees, protections and safeguards that a Solicitor can.
The choice is yours, of course, but if you would like find out more about who to deal with your claim, read our article here or call us on 0161 749 9000 (or click here to request a call back [need a call us button]) for a free, without obligation chat.