Division B: Charging for Lending or Delivering Files, Titles and other Papers

Where a solicitor is asked to lend titles or other documents to another solicitor a fee may properly be charged for such lending to cover both the delivery and return of the documents. If more than three documents are lent, a fee for an inventory may properly be charged.

Delivering documents in response to client's mandate.

Where files or documents are delivered by one solicitor to another in accordance with the client's written instructions or mandate, a fee may properly be charged including a fee for an inventory if more than three documents are delivered.  No charge should be made for delivering such papers direct to the client or former client, but any outlay incurred in posting or delivering by courier may properly be recovered from the client or former client.  As the fee is payable for delivering material, it is not chargeable before the material is delivered and therefore any attempt to exercise a lien over the material before it is delivered in respect of this fee would be improper.  The fee is chargeable to the client, not to the new practice unit.

Amount of fee which may be charged.

The Society is not in a position to give guidance on the amount of fee which may be charged in either of the above situations, but in terms of rule B1.11, the fees charged shall be fair and reasonable.

It should be noted that where the Council are satisfied that a solicitor has issued an account for fees and outlays of an amount which is grossly excessive, whether or not the account has been paid, the Council may, in terms of Section 39A of the Solicitors (Scotland) 1980, withdraw the solicitor's practising certificate but only after enquiry and after giving the solicitor an opportunity of being heard. What is grossly excessive is a matter to be determined by the Auditor of the Court of Session at taxation.

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