There are strict rules on how to deal with cost agreements. If you do not comply with these rules, the agreement may be cancelled, even if your client has accepted it. For any legal matter, regardless of value, you must have a cost agreement with your client. Although the deal is likely to be less than $750 and you will not have to provide a full cost statement, you still need to have a cost agreement. These „conditional cost agreements“ must be concluded in writing and must be clear. You must include all the conditions that you define as a successful result, and they must be accepted in writing or cannot be applied. A „cost agreement“ is part of your obligation to open fees to your client. This is the formal agreement between your law firm and your client on how you structure the cost of your work. You cannot charge your customer if they have not accepted your cost agreement.
Some cost agreements may be accepted either in writing or by other means that clearly indicate that they accept it. If you offer a „conditional cost agreement“ (for example. B no profit without royalty agreement), this can only be accepted in writing. Your client has the right to negotiate how you charge the fees; and you can make them a written offer as part of the cost agreement. The Legal Services Council has prepared a fact sheet on cost agreements available on its website. In your cost agreement, you can impose a condition so that you only get paid for your work if you achieve a successful result. A „No win no-fee“ agreement is an example. It cannot be a conditional cost agreement on a criminal or family issue. If you think your client has a good chance of succeeding, you can also include a condition for paying a „buoyancy fee.“ This is an additional payment for a successful result, which must not exceed 25% of the procedural costs (excluding disbursements). Your cost agreement must be clear about how the fee is charged, what you expect from the fee, and what factors can change the final calculation of fees. For the work related to the case, you can only charge fair and reasonable costs. Their costs must also be reasonable and proportionate to related work.
Victorian law does not currently allow you to charge your client „emergency fees.“ Here, your fees are calculated based on the money you could receive for your client from a payment or compensation.