Iraq Ghana English French Kurdish Turkish

Fees Policy

At Descartes, Solicitors offers we understand that the cost of legal services is a significant consideration for our clients. We are therefore clear about costs and work in ways that provide value for money and agree our fees on a fixed fee basis.

You can read the reviews of some of our clients here

Our Team

Our Immigration, Family, Employment and Litigation teams are made up of qualified solicitors (with at least 10 years’ experience), lawyers with at least 4 years’ experience, trainee solicitors and paralegals (1-4 years’ experience). The team is supervised by Evelyn Ofori-Koree who has over 15 years’ experience working in Immigration, Family, Employment and Litigation and qualified as a solicitor in 2005.

We recognise that similar cases can often present with different levels of complexity and even cases that seem straightforward can, sometimes, take several months to make sure everything is done properly.

It is for this reason that we encourage you to contact us so that we can provide you with a realistic estimate of costs to make sure that you receive the right amount of support to meet your individual circumstances. We will agree costs with you for specific aspects of your case so you can stay in control throughout.

Descartes Solicitors does not carry out any publically funded work. If you require Legal Aid assistance please contact The Law Society on 020 7320 5650 Monday-Friday between 9.00 and 17.00 or by using their online ‘Find a Solicitor’ Directory at http://solicitors.lawsociety.org.uk/

Value Added Tax (VAT)

VAT is payable subject to your immigration status in the UK so please contact us so that we can provide you with an individual quote based on your specific circumstances.

Initial Consultations

We offer an initial no obligation consultation which can either be in person, by telephone or by email up to an exchange of 6 emails. The cost of this service will be £150 exclusive of VAT.

 

IMMIGRATION LAW

All applications are likely to vary and of course, we can give you a more accurate estimate once we have more information about your specific case.

 

POINTS BASED SYSTEM
TIER 1
Tier 1 (Investor) 15,000-20,000
Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) 6,000-10,000 per main applicant
Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) 5,000-7,000
Tier 1 (General) – dependant 2,000 per dependant
Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) – initial application 5,000
Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) – dependant 1,500 per dependant
Tier 1 Extension Applications 3,000
Business plans 4,000
TIER 2
Tier 2 (General) 3,500
Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) 3,500
TIER 4 2,500
TIER 5 2,500
VISAS FOR TURKISH NATIONALS
ECAA (Turkish businessperson) 1,500-3,500
Turkish worker 750- 1,500
Business Plans 2,000
FAMILY VISAS
Fiancé(e) 1,500-3,000
Spouse/Civil partner visa 1,500-3,000
Spouse Extension Applications 2,800
Child (sole applicant) 2,500
Dependant on main applicant 500 per dependant
Dependant Relative 3,500
Family Reunion 1,500
Dependents 250 per dependent
VISIT VISAS
Standard Visitor (Tourism) 1,500-2,000
Visit Visa Extension Application 950
Paid Permitted Engagements (academic, legal, sports, creative) 2,500
Private medical treatment 2,500
Marriage/civil partnership 2,000
LONG RESIDENCE
10 years 2,000-3,500
20 years 2,500-3,500
OTHER CATEGORIES
Ancestry Visa 5,000
Representative of an overseas business 5,000
Dependents 500 per dependent
Business Plan 2,000

 

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;
  • advising you as to the requirements of the Immigration Rules and whether you meet the criteria.
  • if you do not fulfil certain criteria, whether this can be overcome and how
  • considering the supporting evidence you have provided
  • where necessary, helping you obtain further evidence (such as medical records and bank statements), including taking statements of any witnesses;
  • preparing your application and submitting it on your behalf
  • advertising you about the outcome of the application and any further steps you need to take.

Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as the Home Office, court and interpreting and translation fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a seamless process.

Interpreters’ fees are agreed in advance on a fixed fee basis depending on the complexity of your case. Some, however, charge an hourly rate ranging from £15-£20 per hour. Independent expert reports e.g. medical experts. These are not required in many cases: we will let you know as soon as possible if we consider an expert report is necessary. If there is an interview and we do attend with you, there will be additional disbursements 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.
  • Fees for attending an interview or other appointments
  • Where the Home Office refuse your application, advice and assistance in relation to any appeal

Factors likely to increase costs of your matter

The following factors are likely to increase the cost of your matter:

  • Not having all of the paperwork available, or having missing or incorrect information that needs investigation and correction
  • Third parties not responding to our communications promptly
  • Dealing with unusual or complex circumstances

As soon as any complications arise we will discuss these with you and agree on the fee for the additional work being carried out in advance of any additional work being undertaken.

How long will my application take?

We cannot guarantee how long the Home Office will take to process your application. You can read more about the current processing times here

EMPLOYMENT LAW

 

Our pricing for bringing and defending claims for unfair or wrongful dismissal.

UNFAIR AND WRONGFUL DISMISSAL
Simple case 2,000-5,000 (excluding VAT)
Medium complexity case 5,000-15,000 (excluding VAT)
High complexity case 15,000-35,000 (excluding VAT)

 

Factors that could make a case more complex:

  • If it is necessary to make or defend applications to amend claims or to provide further information about an existing claim
  • Defending claims that are brought by litigants in person
  • Making or defending a costs application
  • Complex preliminary issues such as whether the claimant is disabled (if this is not agreed on by the parties)
  • The number of witnesses and documents
  • If it is an automatic unfair dismissal claim e.g. if you are dismissed after blowing the whistle on your employer
  • Allegations of discrimination which are linked to the dismissal
  • There will be an additional charge for attending a Tribunal Hearing of £950 per day (excluding VAT). Generally, we would allow 1-14 days depending on the complexity of your case.

Disbursements

Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as court fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a seamless process.

Counsel’s fees are estimated from £1,500 to £2,000 per day (depending on the experience of the advocate) for attending a Tribunal hearing (including preparation)

Key Stages

The fees set out above cover all of the work in relation to the following key stages of a claim:

Taking your initial instructions, reviewing the papers and advising you on merits and likely compensation (this is likely to be revisited throughout the matter and subject to change)

  • Entering into pre-claim conciliation where this is mandatory to explore whether a settlement can be reached;
  • Preparing a claim or response
  • Reviewing and advising on claim or response from other parties
  • Exploring settlement and negotiating settlement throughout the process
  • preparing or considering a schedule of loss
  • Preparing for (and attending) a Preliminary Hearing
  • Exchanging documents with the other party and agreeing on a bundle of documents
  • Taking witness statements, drafting statements and agreeing their content with witnesses
  • preparing a bundle of documents
  • Reviewing and advising on the other party’s witness statements
  • agreeing to a list of issues, a chronology and/or cast list
  • Preparation and attendance at Final Hearing, including instructions to Counsel

The stages set out above are an indication and if some of the stages above are not required, the fee will be reduced. You may wish to handle the claim yourself and only have our advice in relation to some aspects of the stages. This will be tailored to your individual needs.

How long will my matter take?

The time that it takes from taking your initial instructions to the final resolution of your matter depends largely on the stage at which your case is resolved and the Tribunal diary. If a settlement is reached during pre-claim conciliation, your case is likely to take 4-8 weeks. If your claim proceeds to a final hearing, your case is likely to take 12-36 weeks.

This is just an estimate and we will, of course, be able to give you a more accurate timescale once we have more information and as the matter progresses.