Terms Of Business

Terms and Conditions

Everys Solicitors is a trading name of Everys Solicitors LLP which is a Limited Liability Partnership registered at Companies House (no. OC407264) and is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (no. 655338). Registered Office: 46 New Street, Honiton, Devon EX14 1BY.

The term “Partner” is used to refer to a Member or to an employee with equivalent standing. A list of Members and their professional qualifications can be found at everys.co.uk and at our offices in, Exeter, Exmouth, Honiton, Seaton, Sidmouth, Taunton, Tiverton and Crewkerne.

Please read the following Terms and Conditions which will apply to all work carried out for you on the file(s) referred to on the Authority to Act which accompanies this document.


Our normal office hours are 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday with some offices operating from 8.30am or closing at 5.30pm. We may be able to arrange appointments outside these hours in cases of emergency. We are closed on all bank holidays.


We will:

  • Treat you fairly and with respect.
  • Communicate with you in plain language.
  • Review your matter regularly.
  • Advise you of any changes in the law that affect your matter.
  • Advise you of any reasonably foreseeable circumstances and risks that could affect the outcome of your matter.
  • We will deal with your enquiries promptly – we aim to return your telephone calls within two working days where possible.


You will:

  • Provide us with clear, timely and accurate instructions.
  • Provide all documentation and information that we reasonably request in a timely manner.
  • Safeguard any documents that may be required for your matter, including documents that you may have to disclose to another party.
  • Pay all bills promptly upon receipt, so as to ensure that we are able to continue working for you without interruption and so that you do not incur interest charges.
  • Notify us of any changes to your information and anything that may affect your case.


We will:

  • Update you by telephone or in writing with progress on your matter regularly or as agreed with the person in charge.
  • Explain to you by telephone, email or in writing the legal work required as your matter progresses.
  • Update you on the likely timescales for each stage of this matter and any important changes in those estimates. 
  • Whenever there is a material change in circumstances associated with your matter, we will update you on whether the likely outcomes still justify the likely costs and risks.
  • Update you on the cost of your matter at the intervals set out in our letter confirming your instructions. If appropriate, we will continue to review whether there are alternative methods by which your matter can be funded.


We will usually communicate with you by letter, telephone, or email. If you wish to meet with the person with conduct of your matter, please telephone the office to make an appointment. You will find their telephone number, office and email address at the top of the letter accompanying these Terms and Conditions.

Whilst we take every reasonable precaution, email, as with other systems of communication, cannot be guaranteed to be secure. Although we maintain sophisticated virus detection systems, we cannot guarantee against viruses and so any attachment received by you from us should be scanned with up-to-date virus detection software of your own. We will not be responsible for any loss or damage caused to a client’s computer, other hardware or software, resulting from a transmission sent by us.

We cannot absolutely guarantee the security of information communicated by email or mobile phone. Unless we hear from you to the contrary, we will assume that you consent for us to use these methods of communication.

It remains your responsibility to ensure the security of any documentation that you send to us by post. Until we receive such documentation in our offices, we accept no responsibility for its loss or destruction. You may wish, when sending us confidential documents or ones which provide personal data, to send them via registered post or courier at your expense.

We use a secure, private, third-party UK cloud service provider to back up all data.


Solicitors are under a professional and legal obligation to keep client information confidential. We will not pass any personal data to a third party without your express written authority unless it is necessary for the conduct of your case (for example to instruct Counsel or a mortgage provider). However, the obligation to keep client information confidential is subject to statutory exceptions. We are also required by law in certain child protection cases to report any concerns we have to the authorities.

If you are purchasing a property or business with the aid of mortgage finance, then it is usual that we will be instructed to act on behalf of the mortgage company as well as on your behalf. In such cases we are under a duty to report to the mortgage company any specific requirements that they may have together with anything which comes to our attention during the course of the transaction which may affect the mortgage company’s valuation or decision to lend. Accordingly, by signing and returning the Authority to Act you are confirming that we may report any such details to the mortgage company.

Recent legislation on money laundering and terrorist financing has placed solicitors under a legal duty in certain circumstances to disclose information to the National Crime Agency. Where a solicitor knows or suspects that a transaction on behalf of a client involves money laundering, the solicitor may be required to make a money laundering disclosure. If this happens, we will not be able to inform you that a disclosure has been made or of the reasons for it because the law prohibits “tipping-off”. Where the law permits us, we will tell you about any potential money laundering problem and explain what action we may need to take.


Sometimes we ask other companies or people to undertake work on our files, such as photocopying, typing or posting correspondence to ensure that it is carried out promptly and in the most cost-efficient manner. We will always seek a confidentiality agreement with these outsourced providers. If you do not want your file to be outsourced, please confirm this in writing to the person with conduct of your matter.


External firms or organisations such as the Law Society may conduct audit or quality checks on our practice from time to time. They may wish to audit or undertake quality checks on your file and related papers for this purpose. It is a specific requirement imposed by us that these external firms or organisations fully maintain confidentiality in relation to any files and papers which are audited or quality checked. Your files may also be reviewed in a due diligence exercise relating to the sale or transfer of all or part of our business, the acquisition of another business by us or the acquisition of new business.

If you do not wish your file to be disclosed to external auditors, please confirm this in writing to the person with conduct of your matter.


Everys Solicitors LLP is registered as a data controller with the Information Commissioner’s Office which is the regulator for data protection and we have nominated Phil Stocker as the firm’s representative.

Using Your Personal Information

Personal Information that you supply to us may be used in a number of ways, for example:

  • Advising and acting on your behalf.
  • Promotion of our services.
  • Maintaining our accounts and records.
  • Supporting, training and managing our staff.
  • Complying with our professional, legal and regulatory obligations.

We may, if relevant to your instructions, share your information with, amongst others; barristers, medical experts, private investigators, healthcare professionals, social and welfare organisations, courts and tribunals, government departments and agencies, and financial advisors. Generally, this information is shared in order to assist with your instructions, although we may also share it with professional bodies that audit or regulate this firm or where it is necessary to do so by law.

We rely upon our legitimate interest as your legal advisors to process the data that we hold about you and provide you with details of our other services, which may be of benefit to you. We will not write to you with details of any third-party services nor will we pass your details onto anyone outside of Everys Solicitors LLP without your consent save for where we outsource work (see section 7). 

For further information on how your information is used, how we keep your information and your rights to access the information we hold, please see our privacy notice at everys.co.uk

Updating Your Data

You are responsible for notifying us of any changes to your data, such as a change of your address or email details etc. You should notify the person dealing with your matter immediately should there be any change to the data we collect about you listed in the above section. 

We may, from time to time, send you information that we think might be of interest to you. If you do not wish to receive that information, please notify Victoria Muse-Jones in writing or by email victoria.muse-jones@everys.co.uk.


We are committed to promoting equality and diversity in all our dealings with clients, third-parties and employees. Please contact us if you would like a copy of our equality and diversity policy. 


We are required by law to obtain satisfactory evidence of identity of all our clients and sometimes those related to them before we can undertake any work. Our leaflet “Proof of Identity” explains this requirement in more detail. A copy will be provided to you at the commencement of the matter. We reserve the right to refuse to act for you if we are not satisfied as to your identity.

Everys Solicitors LLP will undertake electronic identity and/or anti-money laundering verification checks on all individuals and companies that the firm represents, together with such other related parties to whom the firm is required to pay monies. We will not do this where the related party is represented by another recognised professional body subject to the Money Laundering Regulations. This service, for which there will be an administrative charge of £24.00 (£20.00 + VAT) per check, is utilised to verify the ID documentation provided, personal identification, and address. This is not a credit check and will only leave a ‘soft-footprint’ on an individual or company’s credit file with a Credit Reference Agency.


The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) is US legislation designed to ensure that US citizens disclose their worldwide income to the US tax authority. The FATCA regime requires certain financial institutions to identify and report (to HMRC) payments made to a specified US person, or a non-US entity with one or more persons with control who are specified US persons.

In certain limited circumstances in order to comply with the law we may have to share some of your information, including your FATCA status and, if applicable, your Global Intermediary Identification Number (GIIN), with financial institutions. It may also be necessary in limited circumstances for us to report payments to HMRC which we will explain further should the need arise.


We will store deeds and documents on your behalf without charge unless we consider it unnecessary, inappropriate, or excessive in quantity. We will give you reasonable notice if we require you to remove your deeds and/or documents or if we plan to introduce a charge for their storage.


We regularly review the period for which we keep files and working papers relating to completed matters (which, with the exception of most minor cases, will never be for less than six years from completion of the case). Please ask the person with conduct of your matter if you wish to know the relevant timescale applicable to your file. After expiry of the appropriate period, we will usually destroy your file. Many of our files are held electronically and we will not, as a matter of course, retain paper files.

If we take your file out of storage, in relation to continuing or new instructions to act for you, we will not normally charge for the retrieval. However, we do charge you for retrieving and copying papers that are requested, and for reading, correspondence, or other work necessary to comply with your instructions in relation to the retrieved papers.

If you do not wish your file to be destroyed after the appropriate period, please confirm this in writing to the person with conduct of your matter.

Should you require us to obtain the whole or part of a file that we have placed in storage and upon which we are not required to carry out further work we will, at our absolute discretion, charge a reasonable fee for retrieval, copying and delivery of your documents.


Everys Solicitors LLP is committed to providing high quality legal advice and client care. If for any reason you are unhappy about any aspect of the service you have received or about the bill, you should first raise the problem with the person with conduct of your matter or their supervisor. You will find their contact details in our initial letter to you.

If you feel that the problem has not been resolved satisfactorily you should complain to our Professional Support lawyer, Stephen Clegg, who may be contacted as follows:

Email: stephen.clegg@everys.co.uk

Telephone: 01404 540958

Post: The Laurels, 46 New Street, Honiton, Devon, EX14 1BY

Your complaint will be investigated, at no cost to you, in accordance with Everys Solicitors LLP’s Complaints Procedure, a copy of which will be provided to you upon request.

If you are not satisfied with our handling of your complaint, or if we have not resolved your complaint to your satisfaction within 8 weeks of its being made to us (and in certain circumstances earlier at the discretion of the Ombudsman), you can ask the Legal Ombudsman to consider your complaint. The Legal Ombudsman can be contacted at: PO Box 6167, Slough, SL1 0EH; Tel – 0300 555 0333. E-mail; enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk. The web address is www.legalombudsman.org.uk. Normally, you will need to bring a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within six months of receiving a final written response from us about your complaint, and within one year of the act or omission about which you are complaining (or if later, within one year of when you should reasonably have been aware that you had cause for complaint).

Alternative complaints bodies such as ProMediate exist which are competent to deal with complaints about legal services should both you and this firm wish to use such a scheme. At present we do not agree to use ProMediate or any other such body.

The Legal Ombudsman deals with complaints by private individuals, small organisations (businesses, charities and clubs with an annual income of less than £1 million), trustees of a trust with assets of less than £1 million and personal representatives or beneficiaries of a deceased person’s estate. This means that some clients may not have the right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman and you should refer to them for clarification where appropriate. Even if you are not entitled to make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman it does not prevent you making a complaint directly to us about the service you have received or the bill.


You may end your instructions to us in writing at any time, but we are entitled to keep all your papers and documents while there is still money owed to us for fees and expenses. We can only stop acting for you with good reason and we must give you reasonable notice of our intention to do so. If you, or we, decide that we should stop acting for you, you are liable for our charges up until that point. These are calculated by reference to our initial letter to you that accompanies these Terms and Conditions.

Where you are an individual, not acting for a trade, under The Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) regulations 2013 and where this is deemed to be a distance selling contract, you may have the right to withdraw without charge within 14 days of the retainer being entered into. If you cancel within that period, we will reimburse all payments made by you promptly. Unless you gave consent for us to start work within that period, in which case, you will be charged for the work undertaken within that period. 

If you would like us to start acting on your behalf straight away, then please sign the Authority to Act and return it to us. This will waive your right to the 14 day cooling off period. You will still be entitled to cancel the contract with us, but you will be charged for the work that we have already done.


We are not authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority in relation to either consumer credit or investment advice services. If, while acting for you, you need advice on investments, we may refer you to someone who is authorised to provide the necessary advice.

We may, however, provide certain limited consumer credit services where these are incidental to, or limited investment advice services where these are closely linked to the professional services we provide. This is because we are members of the Law Society of England and Wales, which is a designated professional body for the purposes of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. The Solicitors Regulation Authority is the independent regulatory arm of the Law Society. The Legal Ombudsman deals with complaints against lawyers. If you are unhappy with any consumer credit services you receive from us, you should raise your concerns with the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) or Legal Ombudsman.


We are not authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). However, we are included in the FCA Exempt Professional Firms Register so that we can carry on insurance distribution activity. This work, including arrangements for complaints, is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. The register can be accessed via the Financial Conduct Authority website (https://register.fca.org.uk/)

We cannot advise you on investments other than in limited circumstances that are linked with the work on which we are instructed. We may recommend you to third parties who can provide investment advice but we are not liable for, nor do we warrant any advice they may give. 

Where insurance distribution activity is part of the legal work that we carry out for you, we are supervised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, and this includes arrangements for complaints or redress if something goes wrong.


When calculating our costs in respect of the work we do for you the underlying principle is that the charges should be fair and reasonable, taking into account:

  • The work done.
  • Its importance to you.
  • The value of the property or assets dealt with.
  • The urgency and/or complexity of the matter.
  • The time spent.

We will confirm by email or letter the method by which our costs will be calculated for your matter.

In most cases we will ask you to pay a sum of money at the outset of the matter on account of our costs and/or the expenses to be incurred. If we do not ask you to place us in funds to cover payments made on your behalf at the outset of the matter, we may ask you to reimburse us as the expense is incurred.

If any payment is not received following a reasonable request made, we are entitled to terminate our retainer/contract with you or, suspend any further work until such time as payment has been made.

Should you decide to instruct another firm for whatever reason, then we reserve the right to invoice you for all unbilled work. If you have instructed us on a fixed fee basis, then we reserve the right to invoice you for a proportion of the work we have done on your behalf. This may be up to and including the full fixed fee.

Limited Companies and LLP’s – When we accept instructions from a corporate entity, we will require a personal guarantee from the appropriate director/shareholder, which will make them personally liable for our fees and expenses.

20. VAT

Where applicable, VAT at the prevailing rate (currently 20%) will be added to the amount of our charges. Our VAT number is 430 8255 13.


If we have not agreed a fixed fee with you at the outset, we will give you an estimate or guide in advance. An estimate or guide is not to be regarded as fixed or binding, these are subject to review. If it is not possible to tell what the overall cost will be at the outset, we will provide you with as much information as we can together with regular updates as the work progresses. You may ask us, at any time, to let you know the amount of costs and other expenses incurred to a given date, and also to give you the best forecast we can of the further costs that will be incurred. We will agree with you at the outset of the matter how often we will send you an account. We can also agree with you a ceiling figure and/or review dates.


Our policy is to only accept payment in cash up to £250.00. If you circumvent this policy by depositing cash direct with our bank, we reserve the right to charge for any additional checks we deem necessary regarding the source of the funds. Where we have to pay money to you it will be paid by cheque or bank transfer. Payments by bank transfer or which involve a conversion into foreign exchange will incur a fee, details of which are available on request.

Please be aware that we do not notify changes to important business information, such as bank account details, by email and neither will we accept any bank account details received via email.


We hold all client money in HSBC Bank PLC which is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). We are not liable for any losses you suffer as a result of any such banking institution being unable to repay depositors in full. You may, however, be protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

The FSCS is the UK’s statutory fund of last resort for customers of banking institutions. The FSCS can pay compensation up to £85,000 if a banking institution is unable, or likely to be unable, to pay claims against it.

The FSCS (including the temporary high balance scheme) will apply to qualifying balances held in our client account. In the unlikely event of a deposit-taking institution failure, we will presume (unless we hear from you in writing to the contrary) we have your consent to disclose necessary client details to the FSCS.


You are liable to pay the legal costs and expenses as set out in our letter confirming your instructions and all bills should be paid in full by you upon delivery unless we have agreed with you otherwise in writing. If all or any part of our bill remains unpaid after 30 days we may charge interest on the outstanding balance, including other expenses. Interest will be charged at the statutory rate applicable to judgment debts (currently 8%) plus 2% unless otherwise agreed with you. This rate changes from time to time.

Our bill may be paid by cheque made payable to Everys or by bank transfer. You may also pay by debit or any credit card (with the exception of American Express) by telephoning our Accounts department on 01404 540990.

We may cease acting for you if an interim bill remains unpaid after 14 days or if our reasonable request for a payment on account of costs is not met.

You have the right to challenge or complain about our bill. Please see section 15 above for details of how to complain about our bill.

If there is any aspect of our bill with which you disagree, in the first instance please discuss your concerns with the person with conduct of your matter.

If your concerns cannot be resolved to your satisfaction, you have the right to challenge our bill by applying to the court to assess the bill under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974. The usual time limit for making such an application is one month from the date of delivery of the bill. If the application is made after one month but before twelve months from delivery of the bill, the court’s permission is required for the bill to be assessed.

Unless there are special circumstances, the court will not usually order a bill to be assessed after 12 months from delivery of the bill, where a judgment has been obtained for the recovery of the costs covered by the bill or the bill has been paid, even if this is within 12 months.

We can keep all your papers and documents while there is still money owed to us for fees and expenses.

Even if a third party has agreed, or been ordered to pay, the fees and other expenses incurred on your behalf you will remain personally liable should that third party not pay when the money is due.


Any money received on your behalf will be held in our client account. Where we consider it fair and reasonable to do so, we will pay you a sum in lieu of interest on money held in our client account. The rate of interest may change from time to time but is unlikely to be as high as interest obtainable had you held and invested the money yourself. To cover our administration costs no payment in lieu of interest will be made to you if the amount of interest received by us is £50 or less (except in some circumstances where, for example, substantial sums of money are held for lengthy periods of time).

A copy of the firm’s Interest Policy can be provided upon request. Please ask the person with conduct of your matter should you require a copy.


If the matter does not proceed (whether we are working on a fixed fee or not) we will submit a bill for the work done up to that point in the matter or transaction. The bill will be such sum as is reasonable having regard to the amount of work done, and it will include other expenses we have paid or agreed to pay on your behalf, plus VAT where applicable. 


If we hold money on your behalf, we will usually deduct any outstanding fees and other expenses from such sum before making payment to you. We are also entitled to retain all papers and documents while there is still money owed to us for fees and expenses, this is called a lien.


Your relationship is solely with Everys Solicitors LLP, and Everys Solicitors LLP has sole legal liability for the work done for you and for any act or omission in the course of that work.  No representative, member, officer, employee, agent or consultant of Everys Solicitors LLP will have any personal legal liability for any loss or claim in respect of that work. In particular, the fact that an individual signs in their own name any letter, email or other document in the course of carrying out that work does not mean that they are assuming any personal legal liability. You agree that you will not bring any claim against any representative, member, officer, agent, employee or consultant of Everys Solicitors LLP in respect of or in connection with services provided to you. In this regard, each and every representative, member, officer, employee, agent or consultant shall be entitled to the benefit of these provisions under the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999.

We have professional indemnity insurance giving cover for claims against the firm. Details of this insurance, including contact details of our insurer and the territorial coverage of the policy, can be inspected at our office or made available on request.

Our liability for any negligence or breach of contract arising from your matter or transaction, including interest, legal costs and expenses, is limited to the amount for which we are required to be insured (except where such limitation is excluded by law) by the Solicitors’ Regulation Authority. The current limit which is so required is £3,000,000 per claim. If you are in any doubt as to whether such a limit is sufficient to cover your potential losses from any negligence or breach of contract on the part of Everys Solicitors LLP or its agents you should contact the person in charge of your matter immediately to discuss it with you. Agreeing a higher limit on our liability may result in us seeking an increase in our charges for handling your matter.

We will not be liable for any consequential, special, indirect or exemplary damages, costs or losses or any damages, costs or losses attributable to lost profit or opportunity. Neither will we be held liable for any costs or losses attributable to fraud perpetrated by any person whether a party to this transaction or otherwise. We can only limit our liability to the extent the law allows. In particular, we cannot and do not limit our liability for personal injury or death caused by negligence.

Details of our Public Liability Insurance provider are displayed at each of our offices or are available on request.


Everys Solicitors LLP assume legal responsibility to you for all the work carried out on your behalf by partners and employees of Everys Solicitors LLP.

Everys Solicitors LLP carry out Anti Money Laundering checks in line with our legal and regulatory requirements. We will carry out source of funds, source of wealth and beneficial owner checks as per our obligations. We have an obligation to report any suspicious activity, you will agree to reimburse any costs that we reasonably incur in complying with our disclosure requirements.

Everys Solicitors LLP will not be liable for any loss or damage arising out of any failures caused by the firm’s compliance with any statutory or regulatory requirements.


All solicitors have a professional duty to uphold the rule of law and the proper administration of justice. If your matter involves court proceedings we must comply with our duties to the court, even where this conflicts with our obligations to you.

This means that we must not:

  • Attempt to deceive, or knowingly or recklessly mislead the court.
  • Be complicit in another person deceiving or misleading the court.
  • Place ourselves in contempt of court.
  • Make or offer payments to witnesses who depend on their evidence or the outcome of the case.
  • We must also comply with court orders that put obligations on us and ensure that evidence relating to sensitive issues is not misused.


Unless otherwise agreed, these Terms and Conditions will apply to all future instructions you give us on this or any other matter.


By signing this agreement, you are agreeing that any reference to Everys Solicitors LLP is to include their successors in title and (to the extent permitted) their assignees, and you are agreeing to your matter or matters, together with all your liabilities, documentation, data, or other items in the possession of Everys Solicitors LLP, being transferred to any such successor or assignee. This will make no difference to the way in which your matter is dealt with by us and we will continue to be regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and all rights and benefits set out above will still apply. 


Everys Solicitors LLP is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors’ Regulation Authority (SRA), The Cube, 199, Wharfside Street, Birmingham, B1 1RN. This means that we are governed by professional Standards and Regulations which can be accessed through the SRA’s website www.sra.org.uk or by contacting the SRA on 0370 606 2555. 


Any dispute or legal issue arising from our Terms and Conditions will be determined by the law of England and Wales. This applies even if you or your business (or any part of it) are resident, domiciled or otherwise situated in a country other than England and Wales, or the case concerns persons, organisations or property situated outside the jurisdiction of England and Wales, or where we take any steps on your behalf, or incur any liability or expense, outside the jurisdiction of the Courts of England and Wales. Both parties agree to submit to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the Courts of England and Wales.