How Much Should A Solicitor Cost?

Written by Mathew McCorry

If you read my property blog now, that’ll be the end of it. I will not look for you, I will not pursue you. But if you don’t, I will look for you, I will find you and I will make you read it.

There's a few situations in life where you may need a solicitor, and the costs vary dependent on the length of time it takes to carry out the work, the experience of the solicitor, and the area in the UK you reside.

The main types of legal services solicitors help with are:

  • Conveyancing
  • Divorce
  • Wills and trusts
  • Lasting power of attorney
  • Business law
  • Personal injury claims/litigation

In this blog we cover some of these in more detail, including the average costs involved in the UK.

man writing on a form with a fountain pen

Conveyancing

When you buy or sell a property, you'll need a solicitor to carry out the conveyancing on your behalf. When you buy and sell at the same time, you'll have to pay a fee for both. If you're buying, you'll also be paying for local searches.

The way that conveyancing fees are charged can vary. Often they are fixed, but sometimes they may be dependent on the value of the property involved. It's always best to check with your solicitor to double check how they charge you. If your property is of higher value, a fixed fee will work best for you, but if it's of lower value you could find that a tiered fee is better for you.

In the UK, below are average conveyancing costs if you were buying or selling a property worth £350,000.

Buying

  • Conveyancing fee: £1,100
  • Local searches: £300
  • Total: £1,400

Selling

  • Conveyancing fee: £660
  • Local searches: N/A
  • Total: £660

Buying & Selling

Buying and selling at the same time would be the total of the buying and selling fees, as they are charged separately. So here you would be looking at a total of £2,060.

Wills and trusts

Wills aren't the brightest subject, but they are important. Fortunately, they don't actually cost that much, but the charge does depend on how complicated the will is:

  • Simple will: £150 - £200
  • Complex will (for example if you're divorced or have children from different partners): £150 - £300
  • Specialist will (for example those which include tax planning, assets overseas or trusts): £500+

A trust is most often used to leave an inheritance. A solicitor can set these up for you and the charge usually varies from £500 for a simple one, up to about £800.

Divorce

In a divorce, there are two parties. The petitioner is the person seeking the divorce, and the respondent is the other partner. If both parties agree to the divorce, the legal fees are lower as the process is more simple.

If you're the petitioner seeking the divorce, bear in mind that you'll be liable for the divorce centre's fee as well as your own legal costs.

If the divorce is contested in court, costs can rise substantially and solicitors will start charging by the hour. This cost on average in the UK for a solicitor of over 8 years of experience is £210 per hour.

However, if the divorce is uncontested, this is what you can expect to pay:

Petitioner

  • Solicitor's fee: £450 - £950
  • Divorce centre fee: £550
  • Total: £1,000 - £1,500

Respondent

  • Solicitor's fee: £240 - £600
  • Divorce centre fee: N/A
  • Total: £240 - £600

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