Price Transparency Guide

Sale & purchase of a residential property

Sale

Our fees cover all of the work required to complete the sale of your property including the marketing of your property (if instructed), carrying out anti-money laundering checks,  taking your instructions on the offer you wish to accept for your property, dealing with subsequent missives, dealing with the conveyancing including instructing searches and reports, dealing with queries from the purchaser’s solicitor, finalising the deed of transfer of ownership for you to sign, settling the sale and paying the net sale proceeds to you.

If you have a mortgage, our fee also covers the work carried out in connection with liaising with your lender to obtain a repayment figure and making the repayment from the sale proceeds and preparing and registering at Registers of Scotland a legal Discharge of your mortgage.

We do not advise on any tax implications of your sale. You will require to take advice from your accountant or tax advisor in this regard.

Fees and outlays – assuming sale price of £150,000

  • Legal fee £960.00 inclusive of VAT

The outlays could include:

  • Property Search fees £115 (paid to Search Company)
  • Fee for registering Discharge £80 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
  • Fee for registering advance notice of Disposition £20 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
  • Plans Report £114 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
  • Copy Deed £30 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
  • New Title Plan £80 (paid to plan draughtsman)
  • Electronic money transfer fee £30 inclusive of VAT

Estimated total: £1,205 inclusive of VAT.

If you also instruct us in the marketing of your property the following additional fees and outlays would be payable:

  • Estate Agency Fee  - this is charged at around 1% of the Price achieved, plus VAT, which is £1,800 inclusive of VAT.
  • Zoopla Fee – £60 inclusive of VAT
  • Brochure/printing fee - £66 inclusive of VAT

The outlays could include:

  • Registration with HSPC £348 (paid to HSPC)
  • Home report fee £455 inclusive of VAT (paid to surveyor)

Estimated total: £2,381 inclusive of VAT.

Outlays are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as Registers of Scotland and Search Companies. We handle the payment of the outlays on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

 

Purchase

Our fees cover all work we required to complete the purchase of your property including carrying out anti-money laundering checks, submitting an offer on your behalf, dealing with subsequent missives, dealing with the conveyancing including examining title and reporting to you, examining searches, preparing a title deed in your favour, submitting a Land and Buildings Transaction Tax return to Revenue Scotland and dealing with Registers of Scotland for the registration of title in your name.

If you have a mortgage we would also carry out work for your lender including reporting on title, preparing and registering the security documentation and any other work your lender asks us to do to comply with their requirements.

 Fees and outlays – assuming purchase price of £150,000

  • Legal fee £960.00 inclusive of VAT

The outlays could include:

  • Land and Buildings Transaction Tax - £100.00* (paid to Revenue Scotland)
  • Fee for registering the title deed in your favour - £260 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
  • Fee for registering  the Lender’s security - £80 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
  • Fee for registering the advance notice of the Lender’s Security - £20 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
  • Lender’s Transaction Fee - £18 (paid to lender panel management firm)

Estimated total: £1,438 inclusive of VAT.

  • If you are purchasing a second home or already own a share in another property, you may also be liable for Land and Buildings Transaction Tax Additional Dwelling Supplement - £6,000 (paid to Revenue Scotland);
  • If you are funding your purchase with a Help to Buy ISA or Lifetime ISA, we charge an additional fee of £60 inclusive of VAT for dealing with obtaining your Bonus funds from the Government;
  • If you are funding your purchase with the LIFT scheme, Help to Buy scheme or First Home Fund, we charge an additional fee of £240 inclusive of VAT for dealing with the preparation of relative documents and advising you on their terms, and attending to registration thereto. You will also have the following additional outlays payable to Registers of Scotland :-
    • Fee for registering the Scottish Ministers’ security - £80 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
    • Fee for registering the Ranking Agreement - £80 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
    • Fee for registering the Minute of Agreement - £20  (paid to Registers of Scotland)

 

We may also charge a fee of £252 inclusive of VAT for submitting an Offer at a closing date which is payable even if the Offer is not successful.

Outlays are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as Registers of Scotland and Search Companies. We handle the payment of the outlays on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

* This is calculated on the basis that you do not qualify for any reliefs.

Note: This fixed price will only cover the services mentioned.  If additional costs arise, we will discuss this with you at the earliest opportunity and we will advise you of any increase in price that may arise.

If your sale or purchase is at a Price that is higher or lower than £150,000 the costs will differ from those detailed above.

 

Discharge of mortgage security over a residential property

Following repayment of your mortgage in full, we can arrange for the security granted in favour of the lender to be discharged from your title.

We would charge £270 inclusive of VAT and there is a fee for registering the discharge with Registers of Scotland of £80.

 

Re-mortgage of a residential property

Our fees cover all work we required to complete a re-mortgage of your property including carrying out anti-money laundering checks, examining title, examining searches, preparing a new security and discharge of your old security, repaying your old mortgage, and dealing with Registers of Scotland for the registration of the security and discharge.

The fee for this work may be £840 inclusive of VAT.   

The outlays could include:

  • Property Search fees £115 (paid to Search Company)
  • Fee for registering Discharge £80 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
  • Fee for registering Sew security £80 (paid to Registers of Scotland
  • Fee for registering advance notice of Security £20 (paid to Registers of Scotland)
  • Electronic money transfer fee £30 inclusive of VAT

 

Wills

Simple Wills

Single Will (for the estate of one person)                                    £228 inclusive of VAT

Mirror Will (identical wills drafted for two persons)                      £330 inclusive of VAT

If you are married, in a civil partnership of cohabiting, a Mirror Will may only be appropriate where neither you nor your partner has children from a separate relationship. Where this is the case, we will be happy to meet with you and discuss the options based on your circumstances.

Complex Wills

For example, those with guardianship clauses or requiring specific and more detailed consideration and advice on legacies or limiting the inheritance of, or disinheriting, beneficiaries. Our fee for preparing complex Wills will be quoted on a case by case basis.

Our prices above include:

  • taking your instructions,
  • providing advice as appropriate to your requirements
  • providing advice on legal rights
  • preparing a draft will for you to review,
  • making changes following review,
  • complete execution of the will,
  • storage of original will in our secure storage facility and
  • providing you with a copy of your will.

Our fixed price will not include:

  • work associated with lifetime trusts such as drafting trust deeds,
  • advice and work associated with bankrupt or otherwise vulnerable beneficiaries,
  • advice on inheritance tax,
  • preparing the transfer of heritable property (buildings and land) into a trust.

Note:   This fixed price will only cover the services mentioned. Your case may require additional work that is not included. We will discuss this with you at our first meeting. If additional costs arise due to matters related to your own personal circumstances, we will discuss this with you at the earliest opportunity and we will advise you of any increase in price that may arise.

 

Power of Attorney

Single Power of Attorney (for one person)                         £342 inclusive of VAT

Mirror Powers of Attorney (identical documents drafted for two persons) £564 inclusive of VAT

There is also a registration fee of £81 for each Power of Attorney payable to the Office of the Public Guardian.

Our prices above include:

  • taking your instructions,
  • providing advice as appropriate to your requirements
  • preparing a draft Power of Attorney for you to review,
  • making changes following review,
  • complete execution of the Power of Attorney,
  • attending to registration with the Office of the Public Guardian,
  • storage of original Power of Attorney in our secure storage facility, and
  • providing you with a copy of your registered Power of Attorney.

Our prices above do not include:

  • Any outlays associated with obtaining a medical opinion on your mental capacity if required

 

 

Court and other Tribunals

Unfortunately, because of the nature of this sort of work it is often impossible to give a fixed estimate of cost. This is because at the beginning of a case we will not know how the case might develop, nor what procedure may be required to bring it to a conclusion. Some cases resolve early in the process, but others may require to proceed to evidence or even appeal.

Accordingly, unless we agree otherwise, we undertake court cases on an hourly rate basis. Our hourly rate for Court work is £240 per hour, including VAT.

You may in addition incur outlays. These may include:

  • Fees due to the Court for lodging necessary papers at various stages of the case
  • Fees due to Expert Witnesses for the provision of reports in your case
  • Fees due to an Advocate (a Scottish Barrister) if instructed to provide an opinion or representation in your case
  • Fees and/or expenses due to Witnesses cited to attend court on your behalf
  • Fees due to Sheriff Officers for service of papers on other parties
  •   

Although a fixed fee generally cannot be given, our general advice to clients raising or defending a Civil Court action in the Sheriff Court is that their legal costs to bring matters to a conclusion can easily amount to between £10,000 and £20,000. More complex cases can incur higher costs.

We will generally ask for a payment to account at the commencement of Court work to cover the initial fees and outlays. We may also require additional payments to account to cover anticipated expenditure during the case. These may include payments to account for the cost of Expert reports, Advocates if instructed, and the attendance of witnesses and short-hand writers. 

We also reserve the right to render interim fee notes during the currency of the case.

If Your Case is Successful

The successful party in a Court action will generally be awarded Judicial Expenses by the Court. This means that the other party or parties are ordered to pay a sum to you in relation to your legal costs.

Judicial expenses are generally not calculated on the same basis as your actual legal costs however. Generally a full recovery of these will not be made. As a rough rule of thumb you might expect to recover around 70% of your actual costs.

Judicial Expenses can be subject to a process known as taxation, where the paying party has an opportunity to have the account scrutinised by an Auditor of Court.

If Your Case is Unsuccessful

It is important that you are aware that if you are unsuccessful in a Court action you are at risk of having an award of expenses made against you by the Court.

As mentioned in the section above, these are generally calculated on a different basis to the actual Legal fees an outlays incurred, but can still amount to a substantial sum which again cannot be very accurately estimated at the commencement of a case.

 

Personal Injury Cases

We can offer a “no win no fee” arrangement for certain personal injury cases. We may also undertake certain of these cases on a Legal Aid basis. Information about Legal Aid is given below.

We will assess these options at our initial meeting and advise you of the position.

 

Divorce – simplified procedure divorce / dissolution of civil partnership.

A simplified divorce procedure may be appropriate only where there are no outstanding financial matters to resolve between the parties and there are no children of the marriage or civil partnership under 16 years of age.

Initial meeting

We will first have a free half hour meeting with you to consider and discuss if the simplified procedure is appropriate for your case. This may require us to gather information so we can be sure that the simplified procedure is appropriate.

 At this meeting we will:

  • Take your instructions and providing advice on the simplified divorce procedure
  • Collect information from you about your position, your finances and family circumstances
  • Assess if simplified procedure is appropriate in your case and advise you on next steps

Where the simplified procedure divorce / dissolution of civil partnership is appropriate

If the simplified procedure is appropriate, then our fixed fee for completing a simplified divorce or dissolution of a civil partnership will be:

  • £240 inclusive of VAT at 20%. This excludes outlays (fees which may need to be paid to third parties).

The outlays will include:

  • Court fees: These increase annually. The current fee is £128
  • Service fees: There may be additional fees for service by sheriff officer, if service by recorded delivery has not been possible.

Our fixed price includes:

  • completing the application to the court and arranging for you to sign it
  • notarising the application to court
  • lodging application and any supporting documents with the court  

The above fixed price includes VAT charged at 20%

Note:   This fixed price will only cover the services mentioned. Your case may require additional work that is not included. We will discuss this with you at our initial meeting. If additional costs arise due to unforeseen circumstances, we will discuss this with you at the earliest opportunity and we will advise you of any increase in price that may arise.

 

Separation Agreements

Unfortunately, because of the nature of this sort of work it is often impossible to give a fixed estimate of cost.

Our hourly rate for work of this nature is the same as for general Court work - £240 per hour inclusive of VAT. As a general indication the costs of negotiating, drafting, revising and executing such an agreement might be in the range of £960 to £1,800.

There will in addition be outlays, which will vary from case to case, but will include your share of the registration costs of the agreement. Your share of these will generally be £22.

 

Cohabitation Agreements

Unfortunately, because of the nature of this sort of work it is often impossible to give a fixed estimate of cost.

Our hourly rate for work of this nature is the same as for general Court work - £240 per hour inclusive of VAT. As a general indication the costs of negotiating, drafting, revising and executing such an agreement might be in the range of £960 to £1,800.

 

Employment Tribunals

Our hourly rate for work of this nature is the same as for general Court work, £240 per hour, inclusive of VAT. For this type of case however where possible we will provide you with a figure for our capped fees for each stage of the process.

These will vary depending on the complexity of your case. Factors which could impact on the complexity of the case include:

  • Number of witnesses 
  • Allegations of discrimination or whistleblowing
  • Any delay in the case proceeding to a final hearing
  • Failure to agree issues

By way of example, a typical set of capped fees for a case of standard complexity would be as follows:

  1. All work up to and including the lodging of Employment Tribunal Application or Response, including dealing with ACAS early conciliation - £480 inclusive of VAT.
  2. All work thereafter prior to the first day of the Tribunal hearing - £840 inclusive of VAT
  3. Each day at Employment Tribunal hearing - £960 inclusive of VAT

The price excludes outlays. These are costs that may need to be paid to third parties. These may include:

  • Counsel’s fees – if a decision is made to instruct Counsel to deal with any part of your case
  • Expert witness fees

 

Employment Settlement Agreements

Where an employee is offered a settlement agreement by their employer, the agreement will generally offer a payment towards that employee’s legal fees.

Where our work consists only of considering and advising on the terms of the agreement, we will generally restrict our fees to the legal fee payment offered in the agreement.

Where more general advice is required as to the circumstances surrounding the settlement agreement and the sums offered to the employee in settlement, our general hourly court rate of £240 per hour inclusive of Vat will be charged.

 

Guardianships

Where a Guardianship application includes a request for welfare powers (such as the power to decide where the Adult is to live, or in relation to medical treatment) then Legal Aid is essentially automatically available, and we will generally undertake this sort of case on a Legally Aided basis. The section below on Legal Aid provides further information. It should be noted that Legal Aid will not cover the costs of a Bond of Caution in relation to the Adult’s estate should this be ordered by the Court.

Where Welfare Orders are not sought, we undertake Guardianship applications on an hourly rate basis. Our hourly rate for this work is £240 per hour including VAT.

There will in addition be outlays incurred in the Application. These may include:

  • Fees due to the Court for lodging the Guardianship Application (currently £132)
  • Fees due to medical experts for the provision of reports in support of the application
  • Fee for registration of the Guardianship Order with the Office of the Public Guardian
  • A premium for a Bond of Caution in relation to the Adult’s estate

On a successful guardianship application, the Court may agree to order that the fees and outlays associated with the application be recovered from the Adult’s estate.

 

Legal Aid Work

As above undertake certain Guardianship applications, certain Employment Tribunals, and some types of personal injury action on a Legal Aid basis subject to your eligibility for Legal Aid.   We do not undertake any other types of Court work on a Legal Aid basis.

We also reserve the right not to agree to undertake a case on a Legal Aid basis if we do not consider it appropriate. We would assess your eligibility for Legal Aid at our initial meeting and will also consider whether the nature of the case is such that we are able to deal with it for you on this basis.

If proceeding under Legal Aid generally your legal costs and any outlays will be met by the Legal Aid Board at first instance (although the prior approval of the Legal Aid Board may be required for certain costs).  Depending on your income and capital, you may be assessed as requiring to pay a contribution to the cost however.

If you are successful in your case then any sums or property awarded to you and recovered (including any expenses recovered from the other side) or certain sums or property preserved may be taken towards the Legal Aid fees and these might be deducted before any funds due to you are paid. You may also be repaid any contribution you have made.

In addition to meeting your own Solicitor’s costs and outlays, the granting of Legal Aid might provide you with a certain measure of protection against any award of expenses which might be made against you in the Court action.  In some cases it is possible under the Legal Aid rules to apply to the Court for those expenses to be reduced, and in appropriate cases the reduction can be to nil. 

 

Executry

Our fees for executry work are charged at an hourly rate of £234 inclusive of VAT. The work that is required for an executry varies depending on the particular circumstances of the estate and it is therefore difficult for us to give a “fixed fee” quote at the outset. Our fee is assessed by an independent Law Accountant or Auditor of Court.

The administration of an executry will include the following key stages, although these are provided for illustrative purposes only. Not all stages will be required and this will depend on the particular circumstances. Some cases may require more stage, and this will increase the price.

  • Initial meeting with the Executor;
  • Reviewing your documentation;
  • Providing advice on legal position;
  • Arranging for the appointment of Executor Dative if required;
  • Determining the extent of and quantifying the estate;
  • Informing the Beneficiaries of their entitlement in the estate;
  • Dealing with the Legal Rights of any children and/or spouse;
  • Cancelling any Power of Attorney or Guardianship Order;
  • Arranging the valuation of assets such as property and shareholdings;
  • Arranging for the preparation and submission of any outstanding self assessment tax returns to the date of death;
  • Preparing the forms that are required to apply for Confirmation for signing;
  • Obtaining a Bond of Caution if required;
  • Preparing the Inheritance Tax account for signing and calculating the inheritance tax that is due by the estate if required;
  • Arranging the payment of any inheritance tax if due;
  • Submitting the forms to HMRC and the Court in order to obtain Confirmation of Executors;
  • Preparing the forms that are required to uplift or transfer assets and arranging signing;
  • Dealing with the ingathering or transfer of assets;
  • Dealing with the transfer of title to any property including drafting Disposition or docket link in title, drafting registration forms, obtaining Plans Report if required and obtaining Legal Report and submitting application to register title;
  • Calculating any income tax that falls due for the period of administration and arranging payment to HMRC;
  • Reviewing the overall tax position of the estate;
  • Preparing the executry account;
  • Arranging for our fee to be assessed by an independent Law Accountant or Auditor of Court;
  • Finalising the executry account and sending to the Executor for approval;
  • Sending the executry account to the Beneficiaries for approval;
  • Distributing the estate in accordance with the terms of the Will or intestate law of succession;

The outlays that will be incurred during the administration of the executry will vary and are largely dependant on the value of the estate and the types of assets that comprise the estate.

Potential outlays will be:

  • Court fee for application of appointment as Executor Dative if required - £19;
  • Cost of obtaining any death or other certificates if required - £15 each;
  • Registration fee for Will if required - £20;
  • Fee for Bond of Caution if required - varies;
  • Surveyor fee for valuation of any property if required - varies;
  • Share registrar fee for valuation of any shareholdings if required – minimum of £30;
  • Cost of valuation of any other assets if required - varies;
  • Court fee for application for Confirmation of Executors – minimum of £266;
  • Inheritance tax that is due by the estate if applicable;
  • Income tax that is due by the estate if applicable;
  • Capital Gains tax that is due by the estate if applicable;
  • Cost of registering title deed in favour of the Beneficiary if required;
  • Cost of obtaining replacement share certificates if required;
  • Accountant fee for preparation of tax returns if required;
  • Law accountant fee for assessing legal fee;
  • Bank transfer charges –£30 inclusive of VAT per transfer
HSPC