In the legal profession, the term ‘costs’ generally refers to the fees and other expenses a solicitor charges a client for their expertise and other payments that arise out of the provision of legal services, such as court fees.
Costs are one of the most heavily regulated aspects of practising law. Solicitors owe many duties to their clients, such as the duty to disclose. The laws are not only complex, but have been frequently amended over the past decade.
The Law Society of New South Wales has an educational and regulatory responsibility to ensure solicitors comply with the laws relating to costs. It assists in the settlement of costs disputes and in the investigation of complaints. The Law Society also helps solicitors by providing information and resources.
Our role – read more about the Law Society’s Legal Costs Unit and the Costs Committee.
Review of Billing Practices
November update - Council of the Law Society resolutions on billing practices:
The following documents were developed following a symposium on Billing Practices, held at the Law Society of NSW on 5 July 2011.
Help with costs
Costs assistance – confidential assistance for solicitors with cost issues via phone, email or correspondence.
Costs education – face-to-face costs seminars, including customised in-house continuing professional development (CPD) programs for firms.
Costs Guidebook 6th Edition – a practical introduction to costs, featuring a suite of customisable precedents for compulsory costs disclosure and fee agreements. Please note that the sections on workers compensation, motor accidents, contracting out letters and the standard costs agreements are in the process of being updated.
Precedents and forms – download up-to-date samples which assist in ensuring compliance.
Tripartite Deed – precedent deed to be used in the event of a termination of a retainer, when a client's file is handed over to a new practitioner
Client fact sheets – view information the Law Society is required by law to provide to the public.
FAQs (2004 Act) – find answers about disclosure, bills, trust accounts, assessments and transitional provisions under the Legal Profession Act 2004.
- Legal Costs Unit
- The Law Society of NSW
- 170 Phillip St
- Sydney NSW 2000
- DX 362 Sydney
- T: (02) 9926 0382
- F: (02) 9221 5804
- E: firstname.lastname@example.org