Our standard terms of service
The attorney-client relationship works best when fees and payment terms are clearly stated and understood. Hence, these terms and conditions define some of the important aspects of our relationship. We will assume, when receiving instructions from you, that you have read and understood these terms and agree to be bound by them. All professional work carried out by us will be in accordance with these terms and conditions.
1. We rely on clients to give us timely, complete and accurate information and instructions. Patent Offices often impose time limits, and rights may be lost, or additional expense incurred, if such time limits are not met. We accept no liability if you do not provide clear and complete instructions early enough for us to act within official time limits. We will normally tell you about time limits and of the actions or instructions that are required, but we do not undertake to provide reminders.
2. Please notify us promptly of any change of personnel or address or of any change of ownership of rights. Many such changes have to be officially registered. Please remember that the obtaining of patents, registered trade marks and registered designs can take several years.
3. All oral instructions must be confirmed in writing.
4. It is the firm’s policy to work with each client with a view to holding down the cost of the services we provide.
5. Our fees for services are influenced by a number of factors, including the time spent, the level of expertise and skill demanded, the size and difficulty of the task undertaken, and the time limitations imposed by the client or by circumstances.
6. Each fee earner is assigned an hourly rate which reflects that person’s experience, qualifications and area of expertise. Hourly rates are adjusted from time to time and may change during the course of our representation.
7. If requested we will give estimates of future costs. These will be given in good faith based on knowledge existing at the time, but they are not binding, as costs may be affected by matters beyond our control, and the amount of work involved often cannot be accurately forecast.
8. All actions and attention provided by us are chargeable. These include telephone calls, reminders and reporting on communications which we may receive as your attorney.
9. Our invoices represent time already incurred and fees disbursed. Our payment terms are 30 days net from date of invoice, failing which we reserve the right to exercise Point 12 below
10. Unless some other arrangement is agreed in advance by a partner and confirmed in writing, the party who gives us instructions will be regarded as responsible for paying us, even if such instructions are given on behalf of a third party.
11. Any dispute that a client may have on the content of an invoice should be raised within 14 days of its receipt. If no disputes are raised the invoice will be deemed to have been accepted.
12. We reserve the right to charge interest at 3% over Barclays Bank base rate in respect of invoices which remain unpaid for more than 30 days.
13. We may require payments on account, particularly for large items, such as official fees and expenses to be incurred in connection with foreign filings and actions. Rights may be lost if the sum requested is not cleared to our bank account in time for the necessary action to be taken.
14. If payment is not made in due time we reserve the right to suspend further work: rights may be lost if this happens.
15. Our files may be destroyed when no longer current. Please therefore tell us if you require the return of any papers or other materials supplied to us. We reserve the right to retain any papers and materials until all payments due to us have been made. Our own files remain our property. If work is transferred from us to another representative, the files remain with us; access to them will be provided subject to a charge for the work involved.
16. Baron Warren Redfern and its professional staff are regulated by the Intellectual Property Regulation Board (IPReg) and bound by the rules of conduct for patent attorneys, trademark attorneys and other regulated persons. These rules require us to use our best endeavours in representing the interests of our clients, and in particular to keep confidential any information with which you provide us and to avoid conflicts of interest.
17. If you have any complaint about the service you have received from us, this must first be addressed to a partner and we will seek to settle the issue with you through an internal complaints procedure. If after that you remain dissatisfied you should contact the Intellectual Property Regulation Board at firstname.lastname@example.org and if you are still not satisfied you may take your complaint to the Legal Services Ombudsman.
18. No material change to the above terms is valid unless agreed in writing by a partner.