Value for Money
by Helen Newman
I love a bargain, I think most people do. There is something so satisfying about getting to the till with an armful of clothes and watching the final figure drop as the discounts are applied, feeling almost proud of myself! (Yes I know that probably sounds a bit silly but hey!).
I went clothes shopping at the weekend, picking up a few bits, and found myself in the changing room debating whether one of the items (a dress) was worth the price. I mean with the sale on I could get a pair of trousers, a top and a cardigan for only slightly more than the full price dress – so that meant the dress wasn’t good value for money, right?
But this is where I think value and price can be misleading. On it’s own I probably wouldn’t have thought twice about the price of the dress; it was reasonable for what it was, and I liked it. It was just when I was comparing it against the price of the others that I questioned it.
We are often contacted by prospects who are after a bargain. They feel like they need to negotiate on fees, they need to get the best possible price, they need to get the best value for money – and they need convincing that we, Forrest Williams, are it.
At Forrest Williams we try to ensure that our fees are clear and transparent. We try, as much as possible, to work on a fixed fee basis, inclusive of VAT, so clients know what they need to pay and by when. The work we do almost always exceeds the fixed fee quoted, but clients don’t get an additional bill at the end – a price was agreed and it stands.
We don’t like to charge ‘by the hour’ as find that clients are more aware of how much time they are spending on the phone with us, fearful that the friendly chat we are having about children or astronomy is going to be added to their bill. We strongly believe that clients need to trust that we are working in their best interests, and that by knowing our clients we are best placed to do this.
We have won numerous awards for our customer service levels – not something many people associate with solicitors!
I was speaking with a prospect late last week about the Early Return of Licence application he wished to make. I spoke to him at length about the initial circumstances of the offence which led to the disqualification and how his life was different now, testing the strength of his application. We only advise people proceed with an application if we believe there is merit and a reasonable prospect of success, so we need to take this time to speak with them and get to know them at the start. When I then started to discuss fees with him he was taken aback – my quote was 4 times higher than the solicitor he had spoken with before me. So I talked to him some more, and asked what was the other solicitor offering? He would meet him at court on the day.
Straight away we had a big difference – I was going to fully prepare his case with him before the court hearing, not just arrive at court. That would be several hours’ work and many weeks of contact. I had talked to him to find out the strength of his application, the other firm had simply asked what he wanted and given him a quote – without any details to ascertain if he even had a decent chance of success. We talked about the application and he quickly realised the level of detail required in such an application – and that he would not be able to do it alone. He realised that the service from the two companies was very different and that the product itself was going to be very different. He has instructed us to act for him.
At Forrest Williams Solicitors we aim to provide value for money – not cheap prices. We do this because we are committed to providing the service that the client needs to give them the best chances of their desired outcome, whether that is being found not guilty, getting contact with their child or avoiding civil litigation.
We will always be honest with you in our advice and will keep you updated on your case, even if only to say that there is no update – most of our team are in weekly contact with their clients, even if the case is months away.
If you need legal advice and want to work with a team who you can be confident are fighting to get the best outcome for you then give us a call on 01623 600645.