We embrace the new rules relating to transparency and are happy to provide the following information for your guidance
Contacting Us & Our Pricing
You can contact us via the webform at the top of this page or at our address which is Bridgewater Legal Limited, 5 Bleasefell Chase, Worsley, Manchester, M28 1UZ if you wish to obtain a quotation for legal services. However, for convenience and transparency, we tend to use fixed fees rather than an hourly rate for most services. We would only tend to use an hourly rate model where you have not agreed a fixed fee with us despite us trying to agree that fee with you but work then needs to be done (e.g. it is required by the court and/or pursuant to our code of conduct and/or duty to you) and our agreement with you permits us to undertake the work at an hourly rate.
The work carried out pursuant to this website focuses on immigration related issues. In terms of timescales, we will prioritise workload based on deadlines and need. So one of the most common matters on which we are instructed is to assist in the completion of an immigration application - the vast majority of which must now be completed online. The timing and preparation needed for this will determine both the fee and the time needed to prepare. In terms of written work (drafting and advice) we have a turnaround of about 1 week but this may change depending on the kind of case. It is also dependent upon the client providing all of the information requested. In all cases, we will be dependent upon you to provide information or other pre-requisites (such as documentation) in order to complete the work. In other cases, timescales may be determined by the steps that need to be taken in a case. So, for instance, in an immigration case there are dates before and after which you will not be able to make the application. This can lead to very short deadlines. Alternatively, if you were to appeal or seek Judicial Review a court or tribunal may give directions which will then set the timescales to which we would need to comply. In such cases, we can only help you to comply with those time limits if we have all of the information and documentation that we have requested from you. It is really important to realise that we can only assist you if you respond to our questions and requests for further information. The timescales of an immigration case or application will be usually be determined by your previous communications from the Home Office, the Immigration Rules and their related appendices. In the case of an application for a Visa, this can take up to several months unless your matter qualifies and you pay for priority processing by the Home Office and their commercial partners. In short, timescales are largely governed by:
(a) Your current immigration timeline - when does your leave to remain (if any) expire and/or when did you become eligible to apply for a new period of leave to remain?
(b) The Immigration Rules, associated legislation and appendices
(c) Which 'immigration route' you are on
We provide services directly to the public, including companies and other entities and unincorporated associations. We are licensed to conduct litigation so we can run your claim from beginning to end in most cases. In doing so, we are utilising rights that derived from the arrival of ‘direct access’, namely where a barrister could be instructed other than through a solicitor. In Guidance on public access for members of the public can be found here but you can also contact us for further information in this regard.
Pricing model/indications of price
We are currently not VAT registered and so no VAT is to be added to our fees. Our fees are, as stated above, largely fixed and whilst not on an hourly rate, will obviously reflect the amount of work involved. The following indicative fees apply with all fees being payable in advance:
* Considering your new enquiry/initial conversation - £0 - we do not charge for brief consideration of your enquiry;
* Initial 30 minute conversation advising you on your immigration matter - £97;
* Initial 1 hour conversation advising you on your immigration matter - £190;
* Entry clearance application under Appendix FM (partner, child, spouse etc) – £1800 to £2600 excluding vat - Home Office Application Fees and other fees in this category are typically just over £1500 and you can pay an extra £573 for a fast turnaround (no vat is payable);
* Partner extension application whilst partner is in the UK – £1800 to £2400 excluding vat - government fees typically around £1000 (no vat) for standard application time (non priority) but you can pay an additional £800 for priority (again, no vat)
* Representation at a First tier Tribunal appeal against refusal of partner leave – this representation would be by one of our barristers and would cost between £2500 and £3000 excluding vat; the court fee for a hearing (i.e. where the judge will listed to you/your lawyer) is currently £140 (nil vat) click here for more details on tribunal fees
However, these are liable to vary depending on the individual circumstances. They are indicative only. Additional costs not detailed above might include (but not be limited to) those such as an unforeseen adjournment or the Home Office requesting further information or documentation.
If you ever have any concerns about the service you are receiving from our entity or any person within it the best way to resolve it early is to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get back to you within 48 hours with some assistance and, hopefully, a resolution.
Initially we hope that any concerns raised can be dealt with directly by us through open and direct communication.
Although we hope our clients never have cause to use it, we also have a very simple and thorough complaints procedure in place to ensure that any concerns get dealt with quickly, proportionately and appropriately. The procedure is as follows:
1. If a quick email won’t help you resolve your concerns then it is likely that you have what we call “a substantive complaint”. Any substantive complaint received by the entity should be directed to the Managing Director together with all supporting documentation.
2. A substantive complaint is one which is about a matter which covers negligence, incompetence or a significant shortfall in the level of service our clients are entitled to expect. It may be in writing, by email, by fax or by telephone.
The address for complaints is:
Bridgewater Legal Limited
5 Bleasefell Chase
Or they can be emailed to the managing director at email@example.com.
3. All complaints will be acknowledged, preferably in writing, within 72 hours of receipt.
4. You will also be advised when a full reply will follow, which should usually be within 28 days.
5. In order to investigate complaints, this entity may disclose your personal data to relevant third parties, including witnesses and your instructing solicitors and employees of your instructing solicitors or any unregulated or regulated intermediary. Where you object to any data being disclosed to any particular person or class of person as part of the complaints investigation you are asked to identify that person at the very beginning of this process.
6. In resolving each complaint, the matter will be reviewed to assess the need for:-
* Appropriate redress: as a goodwill measure for the client
* Remedial Action: where the problem is not completely beyond correcting
* Improvement Action: to look at the root cause of the problem and implement changes to prevent the problem from recurring.
7. So as to assist in our ability to investigate any complaint, we ask that complaints be made within 12 months of the incident from which the complaint arises. This is necessary because barristers do not necessarily retain the papers on a case, returning them to the instructing solicitor on completion of the case. Investigating complaints without the relevant files is a difficult (and can be an impossible) process. If a complaint is being made outside of this timescale complainants are asked to explain why there has been such delay. We reserve the right to refuse complaints that are more than 12 months old without any explanation or justification for that delay.
8. The existence of this procedure does not prohibit this entity from summarily setting aside unjustified complaints.
9. If a complainant is dissatisfied with the outcome of their complaint following investigation, or if their complaint has not been dealt with thin eight weeks, they have a right to refer the complaint to the Legal Ombudsman. Such a complaint must be made within 6 months of the end of our complaints process. The Ombudsman will only consider complaints that have already been referred to Chambers and that have received a or outcome from us that is unsatisfactory to you. The office of the Ombudsman can be contacted on 0300 555 0333 or you can write to: Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ. Visit www.legalombudsman.org.uk for further information. Clients who have a right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman are individuals, small businesses and charities.
If you have any questions about this process please feel free to contact your local chambers or to email firstname.lastname@example.org. We are happy to give you impartial advice on accessing this process.