15th March 2022:
Pursuant to section 154 (5) of the Legal Services Act 2015, where a detailed bill of costs (drawn pursuant to section 152 of the 2015 Act) has been served upon a client by a legal practitioner and that bill remains unpaid on the expiry of thirty days, the legal practitioner may apply to the Chief Legal Costs Adjudicator for that bill to be adjudicated. Such application must be made within twelve months from the date of service of the bill.
The above mentioned thirty-day period may be abridged, where it appears just to do so, by way of ex parte application to the High Court, or to a Legal Costs Adjudicator.
A client may apply for adjudication within six months from the date of service of the bill pursuant to section 154 (7) of the 2015 Act.
In accordance with section 153 (1) of the 2015 Act, the above time limits of twelve months and six months may be paused temporarily, where the client has disputed any part of the bill of costs in writing within twenty-one days following service. The time limits will resume once again, when the legal practitioner or client has provided an opinion in writing, to the other, in accordance with section 153 (3), that reasonable attempts to resolve the dispute by informal means have failed.