financing court action : LUSENET : Repossession : One Thread

To be able to sue the lender under the Human Rights Act would be very satisfying but how could this be financed? Limited legal advice under the Green Form Scheme (one short interview and a letter from solicitor to lender informing them I am on the breadline) was all the help I could get. This plus a letter from my MP to Christopher Rodrigues, Chief Exec Bradford & Bingley resulted in reply that they will pursue for full 12 years. But no legal aid available should case go to court ( and I'm not only at the bottom of the financial ladder, I'm under it) so how do I sue them? Complicated case involving subsidence/insurance/negligence spanning 12 years......

-- Susan Graham (, October 07, 2000


Sorry to hear about your problems.

Lots of people confuse the Green Form Scheme with Legal Aid, thinking that they are the same, but they're not. The Green Form Scheme is just legal advice where a half hour or hour long interview is all that is required. In your case, obviously its not.

Legal Aid no longer exists in the format which we all knew. The Legal Aid Board has been repackaged and is now called Community Legal Service. Only certain solicitors belong to the CLS, and not as many as there were before. If you check out there is a directory of thousands of advice agencies as well as solicitors that may be able to help.

Depending on your circumstances (and it sounds as though you would qualify), you may be entitled to Legal Help, which is similar to the old legal aid to fight your case. You need to find a solicitor who is going to be sympathetic to you problems and who is actually willing to fight it, so you may have to talk to several solicitors first. You may prefer to make a few phone calls, talk to someone initially and then take it from there.

If you find a solicitor who thinks that you've an excellent chance of winning your case, then he may offer you a "Conditional Fee Agreement" this is commonly known as no-win no-fee. Some people think that this is a risk, but its not really. Before you can enter an arrangement like this, the solicitor will arrange insurance for you, so if you were to lose and have to pay costs, the insurance would cover it and you'd pay nothing. If you win, then the solicitor would take his share plus a bit extra (they do this because they've covered the costs of your action for however long it takes). Solicitors who are part of the CLS are very stringently ruled over the way they act and have to go through rigourous audits every year - so you know you're not going to get one who will just sit on your file.

Even if you are refused Legal Help in the first instance, there is an appeals procedure.

The most important thing is to find a good solicitor, it will pay off in the long run to ring round firm's first, even ones in towns nearby rather than where you live.

I hope this information helps.


-- pendle (, October 08, 2000.

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