Fixed Fees in Family Law – Controlling your legal spend

Mary-Ann Wright, Managing Partner of Manders Law explains how to control your legal spend when your relationship breaks down.

At Manders Law we have long believed that more should be done to promote the unbundling of legal services to our clients wherever possible. The Legal Services Consumer Panel defines unbundling as ‘the separation of tasks within a package of legal services between the consumer and the legal service provider’: the two parties agree which parts of the package the lawyer will undertake and which the client will undertake. 

The Legal Services Consumer Panel has concluded that many lawyers remain afraid of offering fixed fees. In its latest assessment of the unbundling of legal work, the watchdog says the idea still has ‘untapped potential’, despite take-up appearing to have waned in the past five years. Why has it waned we asked? The answer appears to be a failure by firms to explain to clients what the advantages of fixed fees are and a desire to avoid risk of financial loss by failing to design their fixed fee products correctly. The panel said it understood providers’ reluctance to engage or to promote this type of delivery, but any reluctance could be overcome by better use of case management systems and technology to reduce the risks. We couldn’t agree more!

Clients told us that they look for seniority in their advisors and certainty over fees, which is what Manders offers. We unapologetically promote the drive for accountability, and work in a way which has not yet been fully embraced in the sector, where hourly rates remain the norm. Clients are encouraged to treat an emotionally charged dispute in a business-like way, to get the “deal” done.  Innovatively, we have a range of service delivery models and fee structures, allowing clients to budget legal spend with certainty– a bonus in the expensive marketplace of London family lawyers.  

We offer a comprehensive suite in excess of 30 fixed fee products starting at £500, the cost of which represents a significant discount against our standard hourly rates. This represents a great deal for clients. At Manders Law fixed fees are actively promoted in all suitable cases and cover all work and court hearings until conclusion of the matter allowing clients to control their legal spend.

As yet the SRA has not issued any regulatory guidance that emphasises the role of unbundling in widening access to justice, but the advantages to clients and the opportunity it provides for increased business amongst providers are obvious.


It’s simple. If you have a clear picture of the issues in dispute such that we can assess your suitability for a fixed fee to cover all or part of the proceedings, contact us to make an appointment to discuss the matter with you further. The offer of a fixed fee is entirely at our discretion as not all cases are suitable.

For an initial FREE consultation on any aspect of family law, call Manders Law on 01245 895 105 or email us here.

Note: this blog is intended to give an overview (rather than comprehensive guidance and advice) on your legal or financial position and is provided for information only. It is not an endorsement of any product or service provider.

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