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Legal Profession Act - The Law Society of British Columbia

Legal Profession Act - The Law Society of British Columbia

LEGAL PROFESSION ACTPART

LEGAL PROFESSION ACTPART 8 – LAWYERS’ FEESDefinitions and interpretation64 (1) In this Part:“agreement” means a written contract respecting the fees, charges and disbursementsto be paid to a lawyer or law firm for services provided or to be provided andincludes a contingent fee agreement;“bill” means a lawyer’s written statement of fees, charges and disbursements;“charges” includes taxes on fees and disbursements and interest on fees anddisbursements;“contingent fee agreement” means an agreement that provides that payment to thelawyer for services provided depends, at least in part, on the happening of anevent;“court” means the Supreme Court;“person charged” includes a person who has agreed to pay for legal services,whether or not the services were provided on the person’s behalf;“registrar” means the registrar of the court.(2) Unless otherwise ordered by the court, this Part, except sections 65, 66 (1), 68, 77,78 and 79 (1), (2), (3), (6) and (7), does not apply to a class proceeding within themeaning of the Class Proceedings Act.(3) This Part applies to a lawyer’s bill or agreement even though the lawyer hasceased to be a member of the society, if the lawyer was a member when the legalservices were provided.[2012-16-41]Agreement for legal services65 (1) A lawyer or law firm may enter into an agreement with any other person, requiringpayment for services provided or to be provided by the lawyer or law firm.(2) Subsection (1) applies despite any law or usage to the contrary.(3) A provision in an agreement that the lawyer is not liable for negligence, or that thelawyer is relieved from responsibility to which the lawyer would otherwise besubject as a lawyer, is void.(4) An agreement under this section may be signed on behalf of a lawyer or law firmby an authorized agent who is a practising lawyer.Contingent fee agreement66 (1) Section 65 applies to contingent fee agreements.42 [12/2012]

PART 8 – LAWYERS’ FEES(2) The benchers may make rules respecting contingent fee agreements, including, butnot limited to, rules that do any of the following:(a) limit the amount that lawyers or law firms may charge for services providedunder contingent fee agreements;(b) regulate the form and content of contingent fee agreements;(c) set conditions to be met by lawyers and law firms making contingent feeagreements.(3) Rules under subsection (2) apply only to contingent fee agreements made after therules come into force and, if those rules are amended, the amendments apply onlyto contingent fee agreements made after the amendments come into force.(4) A contingent fee agreement that exceeds the limits established by the rules is voidunless approved by the court under subsection (6).(5) If a contingent fee agreement is void under subsection (4), the lawyer may chargethe fees that could have been charged had there been no contingent fee agreement,but only if the event that would have allowed payment under the void agreementoccurs.(6) A lawyer may apply to the court for approval of a fee higher than the rule permits,only(a) before entering into a contingent fee agreement, and(b) after serving the client with at least 5 days’ written notice.(7) The court may approve an application under subsection (6) if(a) the lawyer and the client agree on the amount of the lawyer’s proposed fee,and(b) the court is satisfied that the proposed fee is reasonable.(8) The following rules apply to an application under subsection (6) to preservesolicitor client privilege:(a) the hearing must be held in private;(b) the style of proceeding must not disclose the identity of the lawyer or theclient;(c) if the lawyer or the client requests that the court records relating to theapplication be kept confidential,(i) the records must be kept confidential, and(ii) no person other than the lawyer or the client or a person authorized byeither of them may search the records unless the court otherwiseorders.(9) Despite subsection (8), reasons for judgment relating to an application undersubsection (6) may be published if the names of the lawyer and client are notdisclosed and any information that may identify the lawyer or the client is notdisclosed.[2010-6-69; 2012-16-42][03/2013] 43

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