John qualified as a Solicitor in February 2010 after graduating from University of Wolverhampton in 2004 and did his Legal Professional Course at College of Law (now University of Law, in London. He completed his training contract at Montas Solicitors in Thornton Heath, London and worked at different firms before moving to Stella Maris Solicitors LLP in 2014 where he is now the Managing partner.
John also completed stage 1 of Higher Rights of Audience course in Criminal Advocacy in 2011.
- Taking initial instructions, reviewing documents and advising on merits and compensation (this is likely to change throughout a case)
- Taking of witness statements, dealing with disclosure of documents and evidence to support claim
- Complying with court orders, case management hearings and directions from the court
- Preparing bundles for trials including skeleton argument trial
This covers cost for offences such as; drink driving offence, guilty plea, etc.
- Considering evidence
- Taking your instructions
- Providing advice on likely sentence
- Attendance and representation at a single hearing at the Magistrates Court
- Instruction of any expert witnesses
- Taking statements from any witnesses
- Advice and assistance in relation to a special reasons hearing
- Advice or assistance in relation to any appeal
A typical fee of £1500 (No VAT; based on an hourly rate of £217) is charged for:
- Representation at court upon guilty plea with sentence at a single hearing
- Representation at court upon guilty plea with sentence at a separate hearing
- Not guilty plea and half day trial
- Not guilty plea and full day trial
- An additional day or part day of trial
- Exceptional hardship argument to avoid disqualification
Disbursements are expenses associated with your case that must be paid to third parties, including court costs, counsel’s fees, fees for medical or other experts in preparing reports and carrying out your instructions and any other actions made on your behalf for the advancement of your case. To make the procedure go more smoothly, we take care of paying the disbursements on your behalf.
There will be occasions when Experts are instructed to write report in a complex crime case, there will be VAT charge on their fees, usually 20%
Disbursements are a common part of legal cases, therefore it's critical to clarify how they work and why we bill for them. A "disbursement" is an expense made that is required to advance the matter on which you gave us your instructions.
We make an effort to notify you in advance of the disbursement expenses you can anticipate paying and the justification for them. If there are any modifications, we inform you and describe why they are required.
You will be charged for any expenses at cost; we do not add any further costs to them. Disbursements are often non-refundable to our client once we have already made the payment to the third party.
The majority of payments are made initially from our office bank account, and we later ask you to reimburse us. Sometimes, such as when it comes to court expenses, we ask that you pay a disbursement to us in advance of it being paid.
In our interim and final invoices, or in the final completion statement, we give you an account of the disbursement payments.
Sometimes, disbursements end up costing less or more than expected. If you paid us in advance for the disbursement, we will reimburse you as part of our final invoicing, or if they ended up costing more, we will ask for a balancing payment.
If you have any questions, do not hesitate to get in touch with the solicitor listed in your client care letter who is operating on your behalf; at Stella Maris Solicitors LLP this will be John Komolafe. We will always be upfront with you about the disbursements and charges wepay on your behalf.
- Meet with your solicitor to provide instructions on what happened.
- We will consider initial disclosure, and any other evidence and provide advice.
- Arranging to take any witness statements if necessary (this will have an additional cost. Forexample: 1 hour of work is £217).
- We will explain the court procedure to you so you know what to expect on the day of your hearing, and the sentencing options available to the court.
- We will conduct any further preparatory work, obtain further instructions from you if necessary and answer any follow up queries you have.
- We cannot provide a timescale of when your hearing will take place, as this depends on the court listing for that day.
- We will attend court on the day and meet with you before going before the court.
How long we anticipate being at court for is subject to change (e.g., half-day or a full day).