- These Terms of Business govern the legal advice and services that you want Movus Law to provide to you.
- Our Letter of Engagement together with these Terms of Business forms our agreement. In the event that these Terms of Business and the Letter of Engagement differ then the terms of the Letter of Engagement will apply.
- We may vary these terms from time to time by giving you reasonable notice or if there are changes in relevant laws and regulatory requirements.
- The scope of the work that we have agreed to carry out on your behalf is described in the Letter of Engagement. The person with overall responsibility for your matter and the person(s) working with you on it are contained in the Letter of Engagement.
- The advice that we give you is based upon the information that you provide to us and reflects the law as it is at the time of our advice. We do not accept any responsibility for advising you of any changes in the law once your matter is completed or reminding you of any dates referred to in any document.
- Your matter is complete upon submission of our final invoice.
- We will charge you a fixed fee for our conveyancing services. We will require to be put in funds for payment of these prior to completion of any transaction. Expenses and disbursements incurred on your behalf in the transaction will be shown separately on any invoice. If you require us to obtain the advice or services of a third party you will be responsible for settlement of their fees and expenses.
- We will require payment in advance for anticipated disbursements and expenses.
- Where we do not hold cleared funds for disbursements and expenses, we are not obliged to fund these payments. Where we are not put in funds for settlement of our fees in anticipation of completion, we are not obliged to complete the transaction.
- If you instruct us to provide a solicitors undertaking then we will require payment of the full extent of our financial exposure, on account.
- We will make and administration charge for bank transfers, e.g. Telegraphic Transfers (TT’s), Bankers Automatic Clearing Services (BACS) made on your behalf which will be shown separately on your bill as an expense.
- Unless zero rating or an exemption applies, we will add Value Added Tax to our charges and certain expenses we incur on your behalf at the rate which applies when the work is done.
- Payment is due upon receipt of our invoice without any deduction, set-off or counterclaim. If you do not pay all or part of the bill within 7 days of the date of the bill, we are entitled to charge interest at 4% per annum above the National Westminster base rate from time to time on the amount outstanding from the date of the bill until settlement.
- Payments may be made to us by cheque, TT, BACS, credit card or debit card. We do not accept payments in cash.
- Upon completion of your matter we will account to you for client money we hold unless it is £1.00 or less. By agreeing to these terms you agree to us donating it to a charity of our choice without accounting to you.
Banking and Interest payments
- Where we receive money from you which is to be applied on your behalf, it will be held in our client bank accounts subject to the provisions of the Solicitors Accounts Rules.
- Our client account is held with National Westminster Bank. In the event of the bank’s failure the bank will be liable to you for any money we hold on your behalf and we accept no liability for any loss you incur. However, in that event you may be able to claim compensation under the Financial services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). Further details including eligibility criteria, can be found at www.fscs.org.uk.
- Where, on your instructions, we have given a Solicitors undertaking in reliance of funds paid to us by you and held in our client bank account and the funds are not subsequently available due to the failure of the bank, then you will upon request provide us with replacement funds and compensate us for any costs interest and other expenses incurred by in seeking to honour our legal and professional obligations.
- In accordance with the Solicitors Accounts Rules we will account to you for interest on monies held in our client account in accordance with the company’s interest policy. Interest will be calculated and paid where the amount equals or is greater than £15. A copy of our interest policy is available on our website at www.movuslaw.com or on request.
- We may apply interest and sums calculated in lieu of interest towards settlement of any unpaid bill delivered to you.
- Unless you instruct us otherwise and in accordance with normal business practice, we will communicate with each other and third parties by letter, fax, email, telephone and video. We cannot guarantee the security or effectiveness of email and employ the appropriate technological measures to minimise the risk of a breach of confidentiality. Consequently, we cannot be held responsible for the security of correspondence sent by email nor any loss arising from the delay, non-delivery or interception of emails.
- We shall be entitled to rely (without any enquiry whatsoever on any instructions in writing (including those received by email and fax) that appears on its face to be signed or sent on your behalf that affects the matters described in these terms and Letter of Engagement.
Insurance and Liability
- We maintain professional indemnity insurance in accordance with the rules of the Solicitors Regulation Authority. Details of our insurers, and a summary of cover is available for inspection at our offices and can be viewed on our website www.movuslaw.com
- The total aggregate liability of Movus Law its directors, employees and agents (whether arising in contract or negligence or otherwise) in any matter for any claim or series of claims arising from the same circumstances will be subject to a the limitation referred to in the Letter of Engagement, or if no cap is referred to in the Letter of Engagement, it will be limited to £3 million.
- Notwithstanding the limitation of liability above, our liability shall also be limited to that proportion of the loss or damage (including interest and costs) suffered by you, which is ordered against us by a Court of competent jurisdiction after taking account of the contribution to the relevant loss and damage of any other person responsible and/or liable to you for such loss and damage. For the purposes of assessing such contribution of any other person not account shall be taken of any limit imposed on the amount of liability of such person by any agreement made before the loss or damage occurred.
- The Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 is excluded so that no third party shall be entitled to enforce any provisions of these Terms of Business or Letter of Engagement.
- Our advice is provided solely for the purposes of the transaction and only to you and may not without our prior written consent, be used for any other purposes, or disclosed to any person other than your other advisors (who may not rely on the advice).
- We do not accept liability for the acts and omissions of any third party we may instruct on your behalf.
- We will not be liable for any loss, damage or delay arising out of our compliance with any statutory or regulatory requirement, which in our absolute discretion we believe that we may have.
- The limitations and exclusions on liability in these Terms of Business shall have no application to any liability for death or personal injury caused by our negligence or for any other liability, which cannot be excluded or limited.
- We will undertake a conflict check to establish whether we are able to act for you in this matter by reference to our legal and professional rules. If a conflict arises, we may have to stop acting for you.
- We will treat any information obtained from you that is not in the public domain as confidential. However, we may sometimes have to disclose information to regulatory authorities under rules of law or professional conduct. If so, we would (where permissible and practicable) inform you of the request or requirement to disclose.
- If you or we engage other professional advisers to assist with a matter, we will assume, unless you notify us otherwise, that we may disclose any such information to such other advisers, as we consider necessary and that we may keep other relevant parties informed as to the status of the transaction (e.g. developer, sellers agent).
- Where possible we will disclose to you all information, which is material to your affairs and business regardless of the source of that information. However, we will not disclose to you any confidential information about the business and affairs of any other existing or former client or any information in respect of which we owe a duty of confidentiality to a third party.
- We may sometimes outsource support services as well as using third party IT services (including cloud-based systems), waste disposal, on the basis that our suppliers have agreed to keep any information they receive from us confidential and secure and to process any Personal Data in accordance with our instructions only and in compliance with all relevant Data Protection Laws.
- We are responsible for the personal information about you that we collect and use under the Data Protection Act.
- What personal data we collect and how that data is collected;
- How, why and on what grounds we use your personal data;
- Who we share your personal data with;
- Where your personal data is held and how long it is kept;
- Whether your personal data may be transferred out of the European Economic Area and, if so, the measures taken to protect that data;
- Your rights in relation to the personal data we hold or use;
- The steps we take to secure your personal data; and
- How to make a complaint in relation to our use of your personal data.
- If you would like to get in touch with us to discuss how we use your personal information, to exercise your rights or provide feedback or make a complaint about the use of your information please contact our Operations Director Kevin Steele at email@example.com
- You can also contact the information Commissioners’ Office via htttps://ico.org.uk/ for information, advice or to make a complaint.
- We may use your personal information to send you updates about legal developments or events that might be of interest to you and/or information about our services. This is within our legitimate interests as a law firm to use your personal information in this way.
- You have the right to opt out of receiving marketing communications at any time, by:
- Contacting us by email to unsubscribe or update your preferences to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Using the ‘unsubscribe’ link in the emails.
Insurance Distribution Activities
- We are not authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority but we are included on the register maintained by the Financial Conduct Authority so that we can carry on insurance distribution activity which is broadly the advising on, selling and administration of insurance contracts. The register can be accessed via the Financial Conduct Authority website at www.fca.gov.uk/register. This part of our business, including arrangements for complaints or redress if something goes wrong is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
- We do not receive commissions in relation to our insurance distribution activities.
Documents, files and storage
- While we are working for you, we will keep a paper and/or electronic file. Once the work is concluded, we will retain an electronic file and may retain a paper file. If, when your matter is concluded you require documents from your file please let us know.
- In some circumstances, in particular, if you have not paid all of our invoices, we may have the right to keep documents that belong to you, even if you ask us to return or destroy them.
- We will retain our files in accordance with the periods specified in our Document Retention Policy, which may change from time to time. We reserve the right to destroy files without further notice to you at the end of the retention period specified which is currently 7 years after the conclusion.
- We will return all important documents such as Deeds to you at the end of the transaction unless they are required by your mortgage funder.
- If we are asked to retrieve or provide copies of stored documents we will make and administrative charge of an amount to be determined (at our discretion) at the time of your request. Our current minimum charge is £75 plus VAT.
- We own the copyright in all the documents created by us for you. You may use those documents for the particular purpose for which they were created if you have paid all costs and expenses due to us.
Financial Crime Money Laundering and Counter Terrorism
- As independent legal professionals involved in activities at risk of being used for the purpose money laundering and terrorist financing, GB Solicitors are subject to the provisions of the Proceeds of Crime Act and Money Laundering Regulations with the aim of preventing the use of legal service providers for money laundering.
- We are required to undertake due diligence on clients and beneficial owners in order to identify them and to understand the reasoning behind the instructions given.
- Our obligations include the need to:
- Obtain information about and evidence of your identity
- Obtain information about and identity of a business and the people related to it (e.g. directors and shareholders)
- Obtain information about the proposed transaction
- Obtain information about source of wealth and source of funds
- Monitor transactions and keep identify information up to date
- We will need to carry out an electronic search for identification purposes. This searches against various databases and will leave a record of the search having been made on but will not affect your credit rating.
- If we do not obtain satisfactory evidence of identify or of the transaction, then we will not be able to proceed with your work.
- Where we hold funds on your behalf or on behalf of a beneficial owner in the company’s bank account and where requested to do so, we may provide the bank with evidence of our due diligence including evidence of your identity.
- We must also report suspicions of money laundering to the relevant external authorities. We may have to stop work on your matter and may not be allowed to tell you if we make a report. We will not be liable to you for the consequences of such a report made in good faith.
Equality and Diversity
- We are committed to promoting equality and diversity in all of our dealings with clients, third parties and employees. You can view our Equality and Diversity policy on our website www.movuslaw.com or we can provide you with a hard copy on request.
- You may terminate your instructions in writing at any time.
- We may terminate our agreement to provide services to you in writing, for good reason and on reasonable notice. Good reason includes where you fail to give us proper instructions, failure to pay our invoices or provide money on account of disbursements or fees, where it would be impractical, unethical or unlawful to continue or where the necessary relationship of trust and confidence has broken down.
- Our written Complaints Procedure is available on request or it can be viewed on our website at www.movuslaw.com.
- If there is an aspect of our service with which you are unhappy, please raise it initially with the person who has conduct of you matter. If they are unable to resolve your concerns, please refer the matter to our Operations Director Kevin Steele at email@example.com for investigation. If you remain dissatisfied, you may have the right to refer your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman who can be contacted by post at PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ, by mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone on 0300 555 0333. The website can be viewed at www.legalombudsman.org.uk.
- If your complaint concerns an invoice, in addition to any right you may have to complain to the Legal Ombudsman, you may also have a right to apply to the Court for assessment of the bill under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974. The Legal Ombudsman may not deal with a complaint about an invoice if a client has applied to the Court for the invoice to be assessed.
Regulatory and applicable law
- Movus Law is a trading name of GB Solicitors Ltd is a limited company registered under number 6281427 in England and Wales, authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). The Principles Standards and Rules under which the company operates can be viewed on the SRA’s website, www.sra.org.uk.
- A list of directors of GB Solicitors Ltd is available for inspection at our registered office E4 House, Fareham Heights, Fareham, Hampshire, PO16 8XT on its website at www.movuslaw.com
- Our relationship with you shall be governed by English and Welsh law and will be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts.