WORKING WITH US
+ How can I get the most of your services?
Whether you are only at the idea stage, you are starting up, scaling up or been operating your business for some time, we can support you with all your legal documents, provide clear and constructive commercial advice and help you to manage your relationships.
You may have consulted with lawyers before. Hopefully you had a good experience, but it is not always the case. Engaging external lawyers can be challenging. You may have nervously watched the costs creep up or felt that the advice didn’t quite hit the mark, as they didn’t understand your business, requirements, priorities or concerns. Perhaps the advice seemed over-complicated, uncommercial, confusing or full of legal jargon rather than practical and solutions driven.
The Law Boutique takes a different approach - no bottomless pits of billable hours, no uncertain timelines, and most certainly, no 'legalese'.
Here are some tips to maximise your experience consulting with The Law Boutique:
Involve us early in the matter that is causing you concern. We may be able to suggest a plan of action that prevents the matter from escalating into a more costly, complicated matter or we may be able to allay your immediate fears but be ready on standby to assist at the point you need our input.
Give us the bigger picture by talking us through any relevant background to your business and the particular matter you need advice on. What are the key issues that concern you? What do you want the end result to be? This will allow us to focus in on what matters to you, cut down any unnecessary costs and give you a practical tailored solution.
Keep us informed by making us aware of any timescales or relevant dates and any changes to these as the matter progresses. If the situation changes and/or your needs change, let us know as soon as possible so that we can manage any “scope creep” to minimise any potential additional costs.
Be open and tell us if there is anything you are unhappy or unsure about at any time and we will do what we can to remedy the situation. Any feedback you provide is invaluable as it allows us to improve our services. If there is something you found worked really well or something you think could be better, we want to know.
+ Why are you so much cheaper than other lawyers?
The Law Boutique was founded on the premise that law doesn't need to be expensive to be of high quality. The way we manage to remain so cost-effective is by implementing leaner processes, using technology to automate repetitive tasks and by operating as a legal consultancy instead of a law firm.
Unlike regulated law firms, operating as a legal consultancy means that we do not have to pay a proportion of our annual turnover to the Law Society or an annual fee to the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) for the firm and for each Solicitor. It also decreases our insurance costs by around 5 times and means we don't have to perform the management tasks that need to be dedicated to prescribed regulatory administration.
This enables us to provide our services at a much more competitive rate than solicitors providing the same services.
+ What's the difference between a legal consultancy and a law firm?
The main difference is that law firms are regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. Legal consultancies are not.
Law firms are made up of solicitors who are authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. When we provide services to our business clients, our lawyers are not doing so in their capacity as regulated solicitors that are authorised by the SRA.
+ But don't you need to be regulated to provide legal services?
Not for the type of law that we practise.
In the UK, there are certain activities which are “reserved” to solicitors. These are:
- the exercise of a right of audience (i.e. the right to act as an advocate in court);
- the conduct of litigation;
- probate activities;
- notarising; and
- the administration of oaths.
We do not conduct any of these reserved activities. We provide legal advice in non-contentious commercial, intellectual property and IT matters, which is not an activity reserved to solicitors. Before joining The Law Boutique, this is what each of our consultants did for a living as solicitors or barristers. Now, as legal consultants, we conduct the same activity, using the same skills and knowledge, but without being authorised or regulated as solicitors or as a law firm.
+ What else do I need to know about your status as a legal consultancy?
From a client’s perspective, using an unregulated consultancy as opposed to a firm of solicitors will save costs without compromising on quality. While our view is that the cost benefit to the client outweighs the downsides of using a legal consultancy, we want our clients to be fully informed of the position to make up their own minds. Here are the key distinctions:
Insurance: Solicitors are required to maintain mandatory levels of professional indemnity insurance cover (at least £2,000,000 per claim). The Law Boutique also maintains professional indemnity cover of £2,000,000 per claim.
SRA Code of Conduct: Solicitors are subject to rules issued by the Solicitors Regulation Authority relating to the conduct of their business and in particular imposing ethical standards and a duty to act in the client’s best interests. We are not subject to those rules. Having said that, this makes very little difference to the client, as it is clearly in our best interests to act honestly whether or not we are subject to written rules requiring us to do so. Also, the existence of the SRA rules does not necessarily prevent rogue solicitors from acting in breach of those rules.
Complaints procedure: If you’re unhappy with the service received from a solicitor, you can raise a complaint with the Legal Ombudsman. If you’re unhappy with our service, then you cannot complain to the Legal Ombudsman but will have to raise your complaint with us directly. This has never happened before.
"Privileged" advice: Solicitors’ advice can be “privileged”. What this means is that correspondence between a client and solicitor can, if made confidentially and for the purposes of legal advice, be withheld from a court or third party in connection with legal proceedings. Advice from non-regulated advisors is not “privileged”, which means that our advice may be disclosable in evidence in the context of a legal claim. In this sense, our advice is treated in the same manner as advice from your accountants, management consultants, HR consultants or anyone else who is not a regulated legal advisor such as a solicitor or barrister. However, because we do not advise on contentious matters our view is that our correspondence with our clients does not need to be “privileged”.
+ Are you qualified to practise law even though you're not regulated by the SRA?
Yes, we are. Everyone who works for The Law Boutique in their capacity as a legal consultant, is a lawyer.
+ Do you have professional indemnity insurance?
Yes, we have professional indemnity cover of £2,000,000 per claim. We also have public liability cover of £5,000,000 per claim. If we are advising you in relation to a particularly high-value or high-risk transaction, then we are more than happy to discuss increasing our professional indemnity cover as necessary.
+ Can you help other legal professionals with their workload?
Absolutely! In fact, we do this all the time. Please get in touch to find out more about how we can support your in-house legal teams.
+ What happens if I decide to go ahead with your services?
Let us know: If you’d like to proceed with our services, please contact us directly to let us know.
What are the next steps? A member of the TLB team will proceed to onboard you by sending you a welcome email and our invoice.
What else do you need from me? Depending on the type of service we are providing you with, you may need to book a discovery call with us and / or complete a questionnaire so that we can gather the information we need from you in order to provide you with our support.
How long does it take? Once we have all the information we need from you and our invoice is settled, we will proceed with the work. If we are drafting legal documents for you, you will receive a first draft within 5-7 working days.
Do you charge for changes? No. All iterations are made free of charge as long as they are changes to the existing scope. If you would like us to include anything that we didn’t know about from the outset, this will be chargeable.
What if I’m not happy with the service? Please let us know and we will do everything we can to make sure we rectify the matter immediately. Customer satisfaction is at the core of our business. If you’re not happy, we’re not either.
Can I leave you a review? We would love that! You can leavea review on Trustpilot, Facebook or Google - all reviews and feedback, whether good or bad, are welcome!