Fortunately it isn’t a common occurrence but firms do, for a variety of reasons, close their doors and it can be a worrying time for a client as you may feel very uncertain about the future of your claim.
You may be given the option of transferring your file to a solicitor of your choice or the firm may have made prior arrangements to transfer your file to another firm unless you instruct otherwise.
The latter may seem attractive as it is easy and doesn’t require you to do anything, or take up your time, however what do you know about the firm your file is being transferred to and do they have the expertise to handle your case? Medical negligence cases are often complex and require specialism beyond that which can be offered by a lawyer who handles road traffic or tripping and slipping claims. How can you tell whether the lawyer is a specialist? You should look to see whether they are accredited to the Law Society, AvMA (Action for Victims of Medical Accidents) or APIL (Association for Personal Injury Lawyers) clinical negligence panels. Firms with these accreditations will display the appropriate logos on their websites.
You should not feel pressured to place your file with a particular firm. You have the right to collect your file or to instruct a solicitor of your choice who can then request the file be transferred to them. You may be concerned about costs and whether you may have a liability to your former solicitor, new solicitor or both. It is usual however for the new solicitor to give an undertaking (promise) to the former solicitor to collect their costs at the conclusion of the claim which should remove this particular worry. If an insurance policy has been taken out for you this is usually transferable to the new firm.
Morgan Jones Pett is the only firm in Norwich to have both AvMA and Law Society accreditation and one of only two in Norfolk. We are always happy to provide advice and assistance if you need, or are looking, to transfer your case to another firm. Please feel free to contact Sara Westwood at email@example.com, 01603 877000.
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