There are three different types of legal aid that you could be entitled to if you are suspected of, or charged with, a criminal offence. The three schemes cover our work for you at the police station, the Magistrates’ Court and at the Crown Court.
As the largest provider of Legal Aid criminal defence work in Leicestershire, you are in excellent hands when you are represented by us. Our team has an unrivalled wealth of experience in all areas of criminal defence work. That team, our systems and way of working are monitored regularly by the Legal Aid Agency (LAA) to ensure that the work provided for you, our clients, is of an extremely high standard.
POLICE STATION LEGAL AID
The police station legal aid is simple. Everyone is entitled to free and independent advice at the police station when they are interviewed about a new allegation. If you are asked to go to a voluntary interview you will be told by the police that you can have the solicitor of your choice, so if you have some advanced notice then we can help. Simply contact the office and we will arrange for one of our experienced team to come with you. If you do not choose your own solicitor to attend and assist you, you will be offered the Duty Solicitor. (see DUTY SOLICITOR section of our website)
COURT LEGAL AID
For Magistrates Court and Crown Court matters, the rules as to whether you are entitled to legal aid can be complicated. Rather than cover them here it is easier to simply tell you that we will guide you carefully through the process, which depends (in simple terms) on what your income is, along with the type of the offence that you face. We may need some financial information from you, but you then leave it to us to prepare and submit your application and monitor the result for you. Once granted, we can then get on with our work of representing you.
PRIVATELY FUNDED WORK
In the event that you are not entitled to legal aid, we can represent you privately. We all hear horror stories of solicitors’ bills getting bigger and bigger and suddenly a huge bill arrives that you had no clue was due. This is not how we do things at ZMS. Our fee structure is totally transparent. We will agree a fixed fee for each stage of work that we carry for you where we can. For matters such as client meetings, a first court hearing or a straight forward sentencing hearing, this is quite simple to do. For defended matters, these cases go to trial and are less easy to deal with by way of a fixed fee but we will give you an estimate of costs and keep you fully updated as matters progress.
As a guide our hourly rates are ;-
Partners and senior solicitors, solicitor advocates or barristers – £250 per hour.
Other solicitors – £220 per hour
Paralegals – £150 per hour.
Some more serious motoring allegations do attract legal aid, but for the more straight forward matters legal aid is not available. For private motoring cases our hourly rates are in line with the fees above, but we will agree a fixed fee where we can. Speak to Imogen Cox and she will be happy to have an initial discussion with you and agree a fee for the work necessary in your case